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Old tools on a wooden table

Let’s face it. There is glut of information on the web about renovating your home. However, a lot of this information is either too general to be useful, contradictory in nature, or just plain doesn’t apply to us fine folk in the City of Edmonton and surrounding cities. So let’s take a look at some of the more common myth or misconceptions, shed some light on them, and offer a few ideas that might take the confusion out of your renovation project.

“Reclaimed” is the new black

Before I delve into discussing reclaimed lumber and other such products, let me be clear that I am not against recycling or being eco-friendly. On a job, in fact, reusing some products makes me especially happy…I don’t have to haul it away and pay to put it in a landfill. The time and money saved can be well worth it. However…

Sometimes it doesn’t make sense to reuse products. Things such as toilets and taps generally wear out over time and can cause a lot of damage if they leak. Reused framing lumber is hard and brittle to work with often adding a lot of time to putting it to good use (I built a shed with reclaimed 2×4 material and the wood would often split when I try to drive a nail into it).  Other products simply have a shelf life and once that “best before” date is reached, it’s sometimes better to just move on.

The best product to reclaim….baseboard. Generally, most trim work can be salvaged quite easily and made to look like new with a splash of paint.

Glass block everywhere

I’ve read at least a dozen articles that have said that glass block is the new trend. I would like to know where these people live because I don’t see glass block anywhere. Okay, so, maybe I saw it once at this one house we were renovating….but we were told to remove it and replace it with something else.

The truth is, glass block looks nice when it’s first installed. Then it looks terrible because it needs to be cleaned all the time. And, if you have glass block installed in wet areas, quite often the surfaces and joints look scummy.

Sure, glass block allows for a lot more light into an area, but you know what else adds more light into an area? Light. As in more/better light fixtures.

Granite counter tops are the bomb!

There was a period of time when granite was considered the Ferrari of counter tops. There was nothing quite like having a big chuck of stone on top your kitchen cabinets….that is until you set your wine glass on the counter and it left a permanent red ring on it.

Granite needs maintenance, granite needs attention, granite needs love…granite is just plain needy. Sure, granite looks beautiful, but so do quartz and Corean…two products which are both solid surface, yet require little maintenance. And hey, if you don’t have the big budget for a counter top, laminate has come a long way. With almost endless patterns and colors, you can’t go wrong with laminate.