Add Character and Make Your House a Home
If you’re like me and purchased a home built in the early 80’s, you might find yourself with a pretty basic house. While I do love my home, by no means is it a custom home because there’s a bunch more just like it in my neighborhood. It was a good deal, though, and came with a pool – which no one uses anymore except for me. Having said that, the house was a little lacking on details.
I couldn’t make changes right away, and that’s just how it goes sometimes, but over time I’ve made changes in flooring, painted the kitchen cabinets, and purchased different furniture. Recently I made two changes that brought an unexpected transformation of time and place to my home and I wanted to share them with you.
The first change was bricking one wall in the master bedroom. It’s like I’m in a New Orleans hotel room. The product I used is called Brickweb and the brick is real, but only 1 inch trimmed fronts, then placed on webbing, much like tile for back splash, but larger. I chose an exterior wall with double French doors, measuring approximately 14 feet by 10 feet, for two reasons: cheaper and more realistic. The total cost was $1,400 but the effect is incalculable. (Fancy word, huh?) The labor and supplies were equally split cost wise, so if you or anyone in your family has a wet saw, this would make for a great weekend project, and you’d save $700!
The second recommendation I have for adding character to your home is the lighting. I cannot say enough about this. A new light is the fastest and cheapest remodel you will ever do. And if your better half knows a thing or two about electricity, you’ll save even more. Over time I have replaced almost every light fixture in my home, including the ceiling fans. But it was my most recent lighting update that made a difference so profound, it was almost spiritual. I hung a chandelier in my laundry room.
About six months ago I was watching an episode of House Hunters on HGTV (when am I not). A couple was moving to a new city in the south, had a great budget for the area, and were kind of picky. It never fails when watching this show to determine if the people are glass-half-full or if they’re glass-half-empty types by their remarks.
So the couple is touring a beautiful home when they check out the laundry room and the laundry room happens to have a chandelier hanging from the center small room. Nothing too gaudy or too modern, just a simple crystal chandelier (if there is such a thing). So the couple and realtor burst into laughter, saying, “What kind of person puts a chandelier in their laundry room?” I actually spoke to the television and said, “A person who wants to do their laundry in style.”
I finally got around to picking out a flush mount for $137 including installation and hung it in my laundry room. Now I’m one of those kind of people! Good deals are out there on lighting, but it’s best to go to a store, see the lighting in person, and then find the best price on the internet with free shipping and returns.
One last tip, if you do need to hire an electrician, make a list of other things you want done. Perhaps your kitchen lights need a dimmer or a ceiling fan in the den is squeaking. Use this time effectively because you are paying it whether it takes him 45 minutes or 1 hour.