Two Renovations in One – Bathroom and Kitchen Countertops

When planning a home improvement project, many homeowners put the kitchen and master bathroom as their high priorities for their financial and emotional investment. When considering upgrading the countertops in a home, there are many options for using the same material in both rooms. This fact helps to unify the design in home d├ęcor and can offer cost savings for buying materials in bulk.

In order for a kitchen countertop to also work in the bathroom, there are two necessary qualities. Any materials will have to be water resistant and sanitary to deal with germs from food preparation and from the bathroom, all the while being able to handle high amounts of moisture.

Let’s take a look at some of the options that will perform double duty in both rooms.

Naturally Water Resistant

Some countertop materials are naturally water resistant and anti-microbial at the same time, fitting both of our criteria perfectly. In addition, these qualities also help repel stains and increase the lifetime by preventing damage that can be caused by water seepage.

Quartz is often considered the standard for naturally water resistant construction. It is non-porous and scratch resistant, able to repel water without a sealant layer or coating. Quartz also provides a large degree of flexibility in the choice of color, grain, and style to fit both classic and contemporary looks. Solid Surface counters are another man made material which is non-porous and manufacturing with acrylics for aesthetic appeal.

Silestone is a particular type of engineered material that is a green product. The use of recycled materials and environmentally responsible quartz mining procedures allows Silestone to be certified as a green product. The finished product also produces zero emissions of solvents as it sets.

Overall, these materials are so effective at repelling water and preventing the growth of bacteria, germs, molds, and viruses, that they are used in many hospitals and commercial kitchens.

Other Design Choices

While not every product can be naturally protected from water and germs, many countertops can be treated with coatings and sealant to prevent water seepage through porous materials and at joints and connections. This option requires extra care and maintenance in both preventing scratches that can compromise the protective layer and the periodic application of sealant over the years.

With a well maintained sealant, granite can be used as a countertop material in both the kitchen and the bathroom. Granite is a premium choice due to its modern and elegant feel. Marble can also be used in both rooms, but extra care must be taken since it is porous and susceptible to etching without its protective layer. Limestone, not normally recommended for kitchen countertops, can be utilized with the same maintenance precautions.

The large range of choices for a home renovation allows homeowners to match practicality with design appeal, no matter which room is being upgraded.

Flooring Installation is the Centerpiece to Design Around

Flooring installation can create a new atmosphere and bring new vitality to a room. Whether it’s a lustrous natural wood floor, porcelain tile, marble flooring, or even linoleum flooring, a new floor is definitely a room transforming thing that can be the foundation of a good home remodeling design and can be just the thing to put that hard-to-decorate room in order.

With all the many kinds of floor refinishing and the many types of materials to choose from, practically anything is possible. For the living room for instance you can have hardwood floors, ceramic tile flooring, marble flooring, laminate tile, carpets, and travertine to mention just a few. This is also true for kitchen flooring and bathroom flooring where the options are just as varied. However, as floor refinishing is not only a matter of fashion but also of function not all types of flooring installation are appropriate for every area of the house. For the bath for example you would want to choose the most durable materials such as ceramic tile flooring, marble flooring and travertine, where as any kind of hardwood floors are out of the question. This endless variety can make purchasing a new floor a complex and confusing process.

When choosing your flooring installation the first step is to decide on the general category of your choice. If your passion is hardwood floors there are many standard and exotic woods to fit your personal tastes and design – from pine flooring, which is perfect for that “cabin-in-the-woods” look, to oak flooring that can be stained light, dark, and anything in between and is also easy to design around since there is no shortage of oak furniture. cherry flooring, walnut flooring, maple flooring are also a great choice to go with as is bamboo flooring, which is favored and highly recommended by environmentalists due to its positive environmental profile. Tiles can also be a great choice for practically everywhere in the house with a huge variety of colors sizes and patterns for porcelain tile, ceramic tile flooring, travertine and marble flooring, to mention just a few.

Bottom line, since for many interior designers the floor is the centerpiece to design around, and it is something you don’t often remodel, think it through with a professional and check what can work best for the kitchen flooring, the bathroom flooring and other areas of the house. Look at all the hardwood floors available or laminate flooring which simulates wood and can be a nice alternative. Compare between real tile and laminate tile which is also amazingly effective at imitating ceramic tile, stone, travertine, marble tile, and other materials. And lastly, for best results with your home remodeling and flooring installation project, remember to find the right floor refinishing and Installation Company.

Granite and Marble – Certain Stone Materials Not Recommended For Kitchens, But the Rest of the Home

There are a wide variety of natural stone which are used in homes. Not all stones, such as marble, will be as durable and stain resistant as granite would be and therefore is not best suited for high traffic areas like the kitchen. Soapstone, onyx and limestone are also available for home remodels. However, due to the composition and softer nature of these stones in relation to granite, are better suited to bathroom vanities, fireplace surrounds and lower traffic areas. With these differences from one natural stone to another each require specific treatments for proper maintenance and in order to maintain the natural beauty for generations to come.

One commonality among all natural stone is that, despite some being heat resistant and stain resistant, the finish may not be indestructible. While heat and liquids may not be able to penetrate into a specific type of stone, the finish can be dulled with certain liquids. If liquids containing higher levels of acidity, such as lemon juice or vinegar, are left to sit without wiping them up, the finish of any stone may dull or develop haziness. For this reason, spills should be cleaned up immediately.

Heat is the second potential problem with many natural stone countertops. Placing a hot sauce pan or griddle directly on the stone surface may cause the finish to become other than desirable. Trivets and pot holders are useful for setting pots or pans on in order to preserve the beauty of the home owner’s investment.

Beginning with granite, some fabricators will recommend sealing the granite every 3 to 5 years or so. Some fabricators will state that it is not necessary. Both statements can be correct. Even within the granite family can there be different densities from another type of granite. The individual fabricator will be able to inform the customer which treatment is best for the specific type of granite.

Every other type of natural stone will need to be treated and sealed in some form or another. Different stone materials can require different sealers. Again, deferring to the fabricator’s recommendations for treating the countertop is the wisest course of action. Failure to do so can result in a poor performance and even damage the countertop.

Some stone countertops, such as soapstone and marble, are a perfect material to use to obtain that “old world” look. The natural veining appears to soften the look of the stone. Soapstone will naturally turn from a lighter color to a darker one due to oxidation when cut. Although these two stones are softer than granite and usually not used in high traffic areas, if the overall goal is to produce an “old world” feel, then it can be acceptable. The home owner should just be aware that soapstone and marble are more likely to chip or cut than granite. For this reason, these two stones are common for use in bathrooms or as fireplace surrounds and mantel pieces.

Other stones which can be utilized in bathrooms and even offices are onyx, limestone and travertine. Stone such as these are not as heavily used as granite or marble due to the softness of the stone. Although able to produce vivid depths of color and richness, these stones are best suited for low traffic areas and accent throughout the home.