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5 Essential Elements of a Chef’s Kitchen Renovation

Just because you don’t have your own restaurant, doesn’t mean you can’t feel proud about being the master chef at home. If the kitchen is where you find joy, then why not bring some more love into this space by creating your own chef’s kitchen right at home? You may never get the chance to show off your culinary delights in a five-start Michelin, but really, who cares when you get to be the head chef for your family and friends? If cooking is where your heart lies, then making the effort and investment to create a chef’s kitchen is well worth it.

When you’re ready to spice up your kitchen, make sure to add these 5 essential elements of a chef’s kitchen into your renovation project.


Ample Amount Of Room

If you ever peak back behind the scenes at a restaurant, often you can see chefs fluttering around the kitchen in an almost orchestrated rhythm. So the first necessary element for a proper kitchen is to have ample amount of room for both you and anyone involved to move around in. Having an open floor layout is essential. If you have partition walls separating your kitchen from your guests in a neighbouring room, think about how you can eliminate them in your design and add in an island instead to place your culinary skills on display as you interact with your loved ones.


Gas Cook Range

For any chef – whether at home or in a restaurant, the stove is often where most of the magic happens. So, naturally, you need it to excel in performance with this appliance. When taking on your chef’s kitchen renovation, don’t skip out of the appliances that matter. Having a gas cook range that operates with a high British thermal unit (that’s above the average 7,000 Btu) provides larger, hotter flames, with a grill to go alongside it.


Large Sink And Extendable Faucet

With the amount of pots and pans getting used up on a regular basis, having at least two large basin sinks is extremely helpful. You can add these features to the island, or simply add them into your current layout. Just be sure to add in an extendable faucet that can allow you to reach the hose into areas easily.


Sufficient Storage To Organize Your Equipment

For a chef, the knives, spatulas, spoons, flambé torch and all of the other gadgets and gizmos that get used on a regular basis are your essential tools. And keeping them organized and stored away properly and conveniently is essential. Keeping the kitchen organized with a flow that makes sense to you is all about adding in those necessary pull-out drawers, Lazy Susan’s and other organizers to keep your tools stored away properly. Keep this in mind during the renovation to incorporate enough cabinetry and units to make your kitchen work for your culinary rhythm.


Finishing Touches

If the kitchen is where you truly feel at home, then make it truly your own by adding in those finishing touches that you love. Install elegant pot lights along the ceiling, place your favourite copper pots on display, add in that luxurious granite countertop you’ve been dreaming of working on.  Make it yours!

Get creative and use these other key elements to help make your dream chef kitchen a reality that you can enjoy everyday at home.

5 Downsides of a DIY Remodel

Thinking of taking on a DIY remodel? Well, you might want to think again before jumping into that. As great as those Youtube videos may seem, the reality is that DIY projects can be much more of a hassle and simply not worth the amount of time and aggravation it can end up requiring. When it comes to home projects like a bathroom upgrade or remodelling the interior, it’s always best to leave it to the professionals.

Following DIY instructions to take on something that you may not be equipped for – such as plumbing, demolishing, or rebuilding – can be dangerous and can end up costing you much more in the long run if something goes wrong.

So if you’re teetering on that DIY debate, consider the 5 downsides of a DIY remodel first.


Calculating The Real Cost

With the amount of DIY videos that are fluttering around online, it’s hard not to get caught up in that DIY fever. And one of the main motivating reasons why many homeowners take on these home projects is to save some of their hard earned money. But the reality is that it’s often not as much of a frugal path as they were hoping for.

There are many projects that can cost much more in reality, and the fact is that many experienced, reputable contractors have connections to suppliers that offer discounts to keep costs lower. Plus, when you begin to factor in the amount of time you’ll have to spend in between your full-time job, the question should always be, is it really, really worth it?

Take the time to analyze these factors and determine if the time, effort, and supplies really outweigh the benefits of hiring a professional contractor who can get the job done for you.


Safety First

Safety should always be an important priority to consider. Do you have the necessary skills to take on this DIY remodel project? Can you safely take care of the plumbing or electrical wiring for those necessary features? It’s important to recognize when something is out of your repertoire of skills and when certain tasks should only be dealt with by a trained and license professional.


Can You Handle The Mess?

Professional, experienced contractors not only have the skills to take on necessary projects safely, but they also know how to manoeuvre themselves, labourers, and supplies in such a way that won’t leave a massive mess for you to deal with. Containing any mess is often a part of the job. So if you can’t handle the idea of living with a mess to deal with after struggling through your DIY, then it’s worth your time to opt out of taking it upon yourself to do.


Staying Within Your Budget

Staying within your budget can also become extremely challenging when you’re unsure of where and what the best strategy is for obtaining the necessary supplies. A contractor can recommend materials and supplies that can achieve your vision, while maintaining your set budget.


Finding The Time

Ask yourself if you really have the time to spare? Remember, any project usually takes more time than initially thought – especially when you take it upon yourself to do. If you barely have the time to spare for yourself, then finding time for your DIY remodel can lead to a lot of stress and aggravation.

As tempting as a DIY project may seem, in the end, many homeowners realize that it really isn’t worth the time, aggravation and energy it requires. Save yourself the headache and call the professionals at RenosGroup.

Planning an Eco-Friendly Kitchen Renovation

Wondering how you can make your kitchen more eco-friendly? Well, there are plenty of ways – from big changes and additions to simple ones like using non-toxic paint on the walls, minimizing wasteful products, and encourage recycling and composting. But those are just the tip of the iceberg. For more ideas when planning out an eco-friendly kitchen, read on.


Install Natural Flooring

Starting from the ground up, consider the type of flooring that will be installed. There are plenty of natural options like hard wood, or linoleum that don’t contain the toxins that are found in many other manufactured materials. But one option that is gaining popularity is cork.

This is a very sustainable material and is of course, non-toxic. It’s a better eco-friendly option in comparison to other natural woods such as oak since cork trees regenerate every nine years as oppose to oak trees (among others) that can take over 30 years. That’s a big difference!

So when considering what floor to place down, give some serious thought to cork, which is available at roughly the same price as other wood flooring.


Upgrade to Energy Efficient Appliances

Between the amount of appliances that get used in the kitchen, this is where a great deal of energy can be wasted, which adds more stress to our environment. If you’re considering an upgrade, make sure to look for that Energy Star label that will tell you it’s energy efficient. And if your budget can’t stretch as far to replace all of your appliances, then just consider some of the ones that are major energy hogs like the fridge, oven and dishwasher. These three are generally the most wasteful and expensive, so by upgrading you can save money too.


Use a Water-Saving Faucet

Wasting water is something we are all guilty of. But there are ways to help combat our bad habits. For example, installing a water-saving faucet is a really helpful addition to any eco-friendly kitchen plan. With a flow rate around 2.2 gallons per minute, it helps you conserve water without even thinking about it.


Refinish & Refurbish Rather Than Replace

Think your cupboards look dated? Well instead of ripping them down and adding that to a landfill, consider saving time and money by giving them a facelift. As more homeowners are looking for ways to cut down on costs, refurbishing older items to look better than new, is more popular than ever. Give them a good sanding and get creative with your (non-toxic) paint.

When you’re ready to get on board with an eco-friendly kitchen design, take note of these key areas that can transform your kitchen into something beautiful for both you and the environment.

Mobility Renovations: Do You Have a Safe Entryway?

Having an entryway that enables you to exit and enter the home quickly is not only important for safety reasons, but it’s also an important matter to address for the sake of efficiency, independence and dignity for those living with mobility limitations. Thankfully, there are many alterations – from big ones to minor ones – that can make your entranceway a breeze to get through for anyone using mobility devices such as a wheelchair or walker.

If you’re wondering whether you have a safe entryway, here are some factors to consider to help assess it and to give you ideas on how it could be improved for efficiency and safety.


Have a Clear Pathway

Before installing any additions to assist in entering and exiting, you should first take a look at the walkway leading up to your entryway. This should be cleared from any obstacles, such as overgrown hedges and garden debris. If there is any patio stones that are weathered and buckling or loose, these should be addressed and replaced first.


Light It Up

Having proper lighting is also crucial to avoid injury and make it easy to get to and from your home. Light features should be installed to illuminate any walkway or paths that provide access to your home. You can install a motion light that will kick on once someone approaches the entryway to ensure the door handle and lock is clearly visible at all times.


Low Riser, Long-Tread Steps

If you or a family member relies on a walker or crutch, then drastic improvements like installing a ramp might not be necessary. Instead, having low rising steps with long treads can help. These steps provide enough room to accommodate the size of a walker or similar equipment and don’t require taking such a big step up or down. This is a good option when a ramp is impractical but your current steps are too steep and cumbersome.


Ramps and Vertical Porch Lifts

If you do require accessibility for a wheelchair, scooter or a similar device then a ramp or vertical porch lift can be necessary. Ramps can be customized to your home and entryway, plus, you can have a “suitcase” ramp installed, which can fold up and be carried by handles. Porch lifts can bypass the hassle altogether by carrying a person on their device to the doorway level.

In order to determine whether your entry way is safe, take a few moments to assess the layout and functionality of it. Simple things like lighting or loose patio stones can create potential safety hazards, whereas upgrading steps or installing a ramp could make exiting and entering much easier and safer.

For any mobility renovations, RenosGroup.ca can help. Contact us today to get started with your home projects.

Designing an Office Space That Works

Today, we’re seeing the traditional office concept give way to layouts and designs that reinforce and reflect core values of your business and get the most out of the space you have. But what might work for one space might not for another. So how do you design an office space that works for your business in your home?

Read on to learn more about some key elements to consider.


Available Space

One of the biggest challenges when it comes to office space design is how to get the most out of the space you have. When considering how to utilize the space available, keep in mind privacy, sound, and work flow needs. For instance, creating an open design in any space can be effective when your company works in teams and meetings will take place there.  On the other hand, if you work with clients on the phone or through video conferencing, a closed design room is better where you can get the privacy you need.


Windows and Lighting

This is a very important factor of any design – especially workplace environments. Lighting – both natural and artificial – can have a major impact on the wellness and productivity as many studies have shown. Maximizing natural light as much as possible and illuminating darkened areas with full-spectrum bulbs that simulate daylight can help.


Functional Meeting Rooms

Of course, every office needs an area to facilitate face-to-face meetings. Consider the size of your team in relation to the table, seating and overall room. Also, consider if you want to host clients in this space, training sessions, or even events. Adjustments and alterations should be made if a space is confined and tight.


Flexible Storage Spaces

When space is an issue if you don’t have a good storage layout you can end up working in a chaotic mess. Creative storage can help you get the most out of your office space and keep you organized and looking professional. Try wall storage, display shelves, and vertical storage. If you are using an old bedroom space for your office consider turning the closet into a shelving system to optimize space.

Designing an office space doesn’t have to be challenging, there are so many ways you can achieve an engaging work environment while optimizing on space. When designing an office space that works for your business need, talk to RenosGroup.ca. As a leading home renovation company in Ottawa, we can help you achieve the design you want with the space you have.

6 Bathroom Design Trends That Have People Talking

Considering how often the bathroom gets used each day, you want it to look good. And having old and out-dated fixtures can be uninspiring and down right depressing to look at. If you’re sick of your dated bathroom and ready to make some changes, take note of these six bathroom trends that have people talking!


French Door Shower

We all love the look of French doors – they’re delicate, sleek and classy – so why not incorporate them into your shower design? The combination of those windowed frames and glass really heighten the chicness in any setting. It creates a great statement piece while still serving the same purpose by keeping water contained. So you can say good-bye to that old shower curtain and hello to doors you can stare at all day!


Round Vanity Mirrors

Adding a round vanity to your bathroom and ditching the old rectangular look is a quick and inexpensive way to change up the décor and boost the appeal of your bathroom space.


Vessel Sink

In case you haven’t noticed, vessel sinks are one of the main bathroom design features that homeowners can’t get enough of today. It’s eye-catching and modern with a distinct touch of old-world charm. It’s the perfect addition that provides that modern and slightly vintage flare.


In-Shower Plants

Ever think about hanging a plant of two in the shower? Aside from it being a convenient place to water, hanging plants adds a natural punch of colour, while also purifying the air and encouraging those blissful relaxation vibes when you’re soaking in the tub.


Playful Tile

More homeowners are getting creative with their bathroom tiles. Today you’ll find everything from black and white retro tile decking the floors, to playful, colourful designs like vintage blue countertops. This is a popular way to add some flare and colour to your bathroom design that’s different, bold and beautiful.


Rustic Vintage Vanities

The interior design world just can’t get enough of rustic vintage wood. And now, you can find it creeping into bathroom designs as well. We can’t get enough of this look – slightly refurbished rustic vanities that show that stressed wood, with classic drawer handles to finish them off perfectly. Together with a vessel sink and vintage faucets, you’ll be finding a lot more reasons to hang out in your bathroom.

If you’re tired of staring at your dated bathroom design several times a day, then it’s time for an upgrade. Use these stunning design trends to help get you inspired, and when you’re ready to get started, call RenosGroup.ca to help make your vision a reality.

Sink or Swim: New Life for Your Kitchen Sink After the Reno

Taking on a kitchen reno and wondering what to do with your old sink? Upgrading and remodelling doesn’t necessarily mean those old fixtures should be tossed away. You can consider placing it online to sell or even donating it to be reused for someone else to enjoy. If there’s still life left in your old sink, here are some options for you to consider for your kitchen sink after the reno.


Repurpose the Sink

When you’re in the full throttle of a renovation project, there’s often little time to really think about how to repurpose old fixtures like the sink. But once the dust has settled, you can begin to brainstorm how you can reuse them. Whether it’s your laundry room, the bathroom, or even outside, consider all of your options for where that sink might come in handy around your home.


Sell Your Sink to Budget-Friendly Homeowners

Selling your sink is another viable option to consider. Many homeowners these days place any and everything up for sale on online sites such as Craigslist or even in local online groups for their individual neighbourhoods. You can gain a little extra cash while giving some budget-friendly homeowners a great deal.


Donate Your Sink

We all know that owning a home these days often comes with a tighter budget. So why not help out some fellow homeowners who can’t afford to stretch out their budget by donating your old kitchen sink? You can ask around through family and friends first to see if anyone is in need. Failing that, there are plenty of options, such as Habitat for Humanity, Goodwill, or any other suitable charity that you prefer. If you’re unsure which ones will take the sink, you can simply call them up and ask. You’d be surprised just what type of items charities are glad to accept.


Call Up a Scrap Metal Collector to Recycle It

Finally, if you found little success in repurposing, selling or donating, then recycling it is a final option that helps you get it out of the house and keeps it out of a landfill site. There are many eager scrap metal collectors that are more than willing to collect your old steel sink.

So when you’re unsure about what to do with your old kitchen sink after a reno, don’t throw it away for garbage. Consider each of these options that can allow it to be put to good use instead.

Senior Accessibility: A Guide to the Ontario Renovates Program

Is your home in need of some repairs or modifications for improved accessibility? Well if you’re a senior or a person with disabilities living in Ontario, you could be eligible for funding offered by Ottawa’s Housing Services branch. Here is a guide to the Ontario Renovates Program to help you learn how you could potentially have your home repairs covered.


What is the Ontario Renovates Program?

This program was created under the City Housing Services branch to provide limited funding to low-income seniors and persons with disabilities to assist with home repairs.


What Type of Repairs Does This Include?

The Ontario Renovates Program only provides funding for repairs and modifications that are necessary for improving accessibility for seniors and persons with disabilities who are living within their own home. This aims to provide necessary support to assist with independent living.


What are the Eligibility Requirements?

To be eligible to receive funding through this program, low-income seniors must be 65 years of age or older. It also pertains to persons with disabilities, along with families who have a member of their home who meets the criteria of being 65 or older, and or with a disability of some sort. There is a maximum annual gross annual income which varies depending on the number of residents. For instance a single-person household may have a maximum gross annual income of $36,075, while a two-person household may have a combined gross annual income up to $44,160 to qualify for the program.


What are the Eligibility Requirements of the Property?

To be eligible for the program, your property must be your sole and primary residence located in the City of Ottawa. It must also be valued at or under $376,300 as determined by the province and verified by the owner’s most recent property tax assessment.


What Type of Repairs Can Be Included?

The purpose of this program is to provide funding to assist in making the home a safer place for seniors and persons with disabilities to live independently. Some of the potential repairs that are allowed include:

  • Doors and windows
  • Repairs to foundation, roofs, walls, floors, and ceilings
  • Plumbing, septic, electrical, and heating systems
  • Fire safety features
  • Installing handrails and ramps
  • Chair and bathlifts
  • Height-adjusted countertops

There are many other items that qualify under the program. You can check out more details here.


What About Funding?

Funding is delivered in the form of a forgivable loan. The funding may also be provided in the form of a grant for eligible applicants up to a maximum amount of $18,500. There are certain stipulations when it comes to the details of the scope of funding, which can also be found here.


How to Apply for the Ontario Renovates Program

To apply for the funding program, head to the City of Ottawa website to access instructions, details, a checklist and the application form.

The duration of the program runs until March 31st, 2018 or until the funds have been fully spent. So if you think you qualify for the Ontario Renovates Program, be sure to check out their website for all of the details so you can apply before it’s too late. Applications will be accepted until March 31, 2018, or until allocated funds run out.  

Adding a Half Bath to Your Home

Planning to add a half bath to your home? It’s an excellent way to increase the value of your home and to add more convenience for your family and guests. If you’re ready to get started, here’s everything you need to consider when adding the perfect half bath to your home.



There are lots of potential areas in your home that can make for a perfect half bath. If you have a stairway with unused space underneath, a large garage, or spare closet space, these areas can make for good potential locations.



Once you have some potential options in mind, consider how much space you need. When adding a half bath, it doesn’t need to be large, just enough space for a toilet, sink, mirror, and vanity. You also want to make sure people can move around in the area without feeling claustrophobic, and a smart design can make this happen.



For your half bath to work you need it to be close enough to plumbing connections that are already in place. Otherwise, you will be spending money expanding your indoor plumbing and pipes, costing you more than you might have bargained for. An ideal plumbing scenario is run piping from the nearby laundry room or kitchen.



You may also require ventilation in your half bath to control odours, improve air quality, and reduce the risk of growing mildew or mold. Consider adding a window or an exhaust fan to the space. You don’t have to get fancy, but there are lots of different designs when it comes to fans, so shop around for the best prices.



Lighting is of course, a necessity but can also be a great way to add some style and design touches to the room. You can add dimmer switches, elegant lighting fixtures, or battery-operated candles to jazz up the space.



The half bath is often the only room guests see besides your entertaining spaces. So why not decorate to impress? Skip the basics and add marble sinks, potted plants, wood accents, and other luxury décor items.


Sound Insulation

Adding sound insulation is a must when it comes to half baths that are located near living rooms spaces or areas where people gather. So, during the installation project, add some sound absorbing materials to the walls, pipes, and drains.

A half bath can be an easy project if you have the right plan and contractor for the job. Before you start your new project, talk to RenosGroup.ca – we can help you with everything you need to get the perfect half bath for your budget and home design.

2017’s Hottest Basement Trends

Basement renos and remodelling have grown in popularity over the past few years as homeowners become more inclined to make use of that entire square footage. Whether it’s an entertainment hub for the family, a place for the kids to hang out, or your own special spot to have the friends over for cocktails, here are some of 2017’s hottest basement renovation trends that are leading the way this year.


Open Concept

Think the open concept has passed? Think again! When it comes to basement floor plans, the open concept is a keeper. Tearing down those dividing walls and taking advantage of the expansive space is not only beneficial from a design standpoint, but also for promoting air flow and allowing as much natural light to filter in from the windows.


An Integral Part of the Home

In the past, the basement was often a forgotten space. It was commonly used for storage, setting up an extra spot for extended family to stay during the holidays, or an unfinished den where your teenage kids would retreat to with their friends in tow. Well, not anymore.

Now, we’re seeing an increasing trend where homeowners are honing in on that once forgotten space. It’s now being transformed into an integral part of the home and an extension of the upstairs living space. So naturally, you will find just as much attention to detail, design, and décor throughout the basement layout as you would in the main living room.


Home Theatre & Media Room

Some homeowners are even taking full advantage of the basement space by cranking up the luxury factor and adding in elements they can really indulge in like an enclosed home theatre and a media room. This is where the serious media enthusiast can get pampered.


The Basement Bar & Sports Center

Imagine having your own personal sports bar, right in your own home! If you’re bored with the idea of creating another bedroom or zone for the kids, why not make it your own space to kick back and relax with your friends while you take in all the sports action? You can create the ultimate sports lounge with a customized bar, paired with some exceptionally comfy seating, a widescreen to blow your mind, and even a few entertainment pieces like a pool table.

If you can dream it, you can create it – and that goes for your basement. If you’re bored with the idea of wasting it on storage or another bedroom that you simply don’t need, claim that space and transform it into something you truly want. When you’re ready, contact RenosGroup.ca to help make your vision a reality.