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To Wallpaper or Not to Wallpaper

To Wallpaper or Not to Wallpaper

You’ve probably noticed the wallpaper craze is still strong. If you’re on the fence about wallpaper, you are not alone. Today, we have a lot more application options than in the past, making wallpaper a more accessible choice. Let’s explore some pros and cons of wallpaper to help you make your decision.

Benefits of Wallpaper

  1. Texture and Pattern: Wallpaper is a great way to add texture and/or pattern to your walls. If you want an intricate design or something elaborate, hand painting may be a little too lofty of a project. Wallpaper patterns will be error free and can come in endless design options to suit your style.
  2. Cover Flaws: Flaws such as small surface cracks, dings and dents from toys or pets, and even colored-on walls from kids can be covered easily with wallpaper.
  3. Durability: A high-quality wallpaper can last well over a decade and stays nice and vibrant over the years. It’s important to invest in a nicer wallpaper if you want it to last for many years. Trendy, peel-and-stick wallpaper can be a great option if you want to swap it out in a few years.
  4. Options: Today’s wallpaper trends range from sleek and subdued to bold and dramatic. But in addition to design options is application options. There are some peel-and-stick varieties that are easily removable, making this type of wallpaper a good choice for renters. Do a little research before you buy to ensure you’re getting the type of wallpaper you want for your project.

Negatives of Wallpaper

  1. Tricky Removal: For durable, classic wallpaper, removal can be pretty difficult. Vinyl or laminate-coated wallpaper can be especially tough because it’s designed to repel water. Traditional paste wallpaper is also tricky to remove, so if you go this route, know it’s a long-term solution.
  2. Humidity: Wallpaper doesn’t love humidity, so if you’re installing it in a bathroom with an awesome shower that tempts your family to stand in there for hours a day, make sure you know what you’re getting into. Too much humidity can cause it to peel.
  3. Repairs: When paint peels or chips, you can easily sand and repaint that area with the exact same color, but with wallpaper, repairs are much trickier. Modern wallpaper doesn’t tend to rip or peel like older wallpaper did, but it’s still something to consider if you want to invest in a wallpaper project.
  4. Looks Dated Faster: Because certain wallpapers can be tricky to remove, some owners tend to leave it up for longer than they initially planned. If you’ve installed a very trendy wallpaper today, it’s probably going to be out of style within 10 years. Paint is generally easier to cover up and redo. Often, if you’re going for a bold trend, you may want to choose an easy peel-and-stick option rather than a long-lasting option.

With all home design decisions, you will be faced with pros and cons. We may be a design, build, and remodel company, but we’ve seen a lot of décor fails and successes and can provide advice from our experts.

Is It a Good Year to Build?

Is It a Good Year to Build?

The housing market has been intense for quite a while now, and shifts are happening almost on the daily. You may be wondering if it is a good time to build right now, and you’re likely hearing all sorts of answers from different professionals in different fields. Of course, the best time to build is really a personal decision and is dependent on your situation regardless of what’s going on in the market. Still, many of us have questions about what the market will do and it’s comforting to know whether you’ll be stuck in a bad situation or not.

Cost Considerations

It’s true that building prices have increased recently. The National Association of Homebuilders (NAHB) reported that costs increased by about 19% over the past year and increased over 35% since that start of the pandemic. Those numbers are certainly scary to see, but we are already seeing a slowdown and expect these numbers to calm throughout the remainder of the year. Lumber costs overall have been a major concern for all builders but they’re less than last year at this time. We do expect lumber prices to remain above pre-pandemic levels, however.

Housing Market Predictions

The housing crash of 2008 traumatized many of us, but a crash like that is not at all predicted. Reasons for that crash do not apply to today’s market and lending standards are much stronger. The market may be softening with the quick rise of interest rates, but we shouldn’t see a foreclosure crisis or a steep drop in home values. If you want to build a custom home today and your top concern is the future of the housing market, it may be a good idea to reach out to a highly experienced real estate agent or home appraiser to get their feedback.

Land Availability

The availability of buildable land for individual custom homes has been tricky to find, but not impossible. Working with a real estate agent to get the right property is key in today’s market, however, sometimes a custom builder will have access to various parcels that you can consider. Some people have purchased their land already and are waiting for prices to lower to get started on their build. If that is you, now is the time to start the process. Prices are cooling and access to supplies is getting better.

Building Today is a Good Idea

What we’re seeing now is that even though prices are higher than our pre-pandemic days, they are mellowing out. It’s not likely, however, that building prices will drop, so if you’ve been putting off that build, it’s a good time to consider it now. Experts don’t predict that building will be less expensive in the future and it’s unlikely you’ll be stuck in a home that’s worth less than you paid for it. The 2008 days should only be a memory, not something that is likely to happen again. If you’re ready to get that dream home on its way, Topp Remodeling and Construction is ready to help you make that a reality.

Build an Energy Efficient Home

Build an Energy Efficient Home

There are a lot of considerations when building a custom home—floor plan, color schemes, kitchen gadgets, basement bars, and energy efficiency. Before you dive into the extensive design build process, research the many energy efficiency upgrades and options to determine what would work for your needs. Over time, you will save money with an energy efficient home and it’s great for the planet.

Address the Entire House

When you’re building a home to your specifications, it’s fairly easy to make switches from a traditional item to a more modern, efficient one. You can tackle the entire home with this approach to provide the best benefit. Windows, doors, and skylights are important factors to energy consumption and with small switches in these products, you’ll save a lot of money on energy bills over the life of owning the home. Water heaters are another great item to upgrade, as well as your HVAC system. An efficient system will make your living situation more comfortable, and these devices and appliances will likely last longer, too. You can also upgrade your insulation (especially on exterior walls) and sealing materials to make sure the cool air is being kept inside in the summer and the hot air is effectively keeping your family warm in the winter. Your lighting choices, appliances, and home electronics are all important when factoring in the efficiency of a home. With a little planning and research, you can build an amazing home with an efficient design.

Go A Step Further

An ultra-efficient home will utilize additional state-of-the-art energy saving products such as solar electricity and solar or geothermal water heating. You can work with your designer to create a way to take advantage of the surrounding environment by implementing energy-efficient landscaping or to place windows in your home in particular locations to optimize energy efficiency. You can choose recycled products, organically grown and ethically sourced materials, and so on throughout the home.

Consider implementing advanced house framing which improves efficiency in wood-framed houses while also reducing the use of lumber and waste in the construction of the home. Cool roofs are also popular in the category of efficiency because they use highly reflective material. These roofs reflect more light and absorb less heat than the average roof, keeping homes cool in the hot summer months.

If you’re remodeling or redesigning a current space, you still have many options for these upgrades. First, assess your home’s energy score (which is a national rating system, developed by the US Department of Energy) to find out a list of improvement and potential savings via certain upgrades. This score reflects the efficiency in the homes based on structure, heating and cooling systems, and hot water systems.

If lessening your footprint is your goal, there are great ways to make this happen during the build of your dream home. Consider energy efficiency in your project, and make sure you’re working with a trusted company like Topp Remodeling & Construction that will work with your design goals and interests.

Considerations when Leasing a Tenant Space

Considerations when Leasing a Tenant Space

Commercial leases have their own unique circumstances. A good lease allows for some amount of flexibility in the leased space to change as your company grows and shifts. When you don’t own your office space, you can feel limited with what you can do. Even with seemingly simple projects, there needs to be a high level of planning involved to make sure you’re keeping within your lease agreement. Whether your space is in a heritage building with old-style charm and lots of regulations or a brand-new building with an open plan and a blank slate, you can make the space functional for your business with the right help.

If you’re planning to tackle some tenant improvements, make sure you get approval before signing the lease. If you’re already in a lease, contact your management company and make sure you get approval in writing. Be clear about the condition of the building and your space, what type of improvements you want to do, and how much control you have over the improvements. Sometimes the management company will pay for certain improvements that upgrade the space overall, especially if the upgrades raise the value of the property, so don’t be afraid to ask. You need to be upfront about timeframes and the process of the project from the preparation stage all the way to the cleanup. Consider the term of your lease as well. If you’re committed to a 20-year lease, for example, you’ll probably want the ability to make further renovations as your company goes through changes over the years. Get these conditions in writing and make sure you have allowances for possible future work.

Upgrade Ideas

There are few fairly simple fixes you can start with to make the space feel more in tune with your business. Upgrading the doors and entrance areas is a great place to start. Another big impact that’s often overlooked is the lighting. The lighting of the space can completely affect the feel in your office environment. Lighting can also be a safety feature after hours, and you can set up timers to keep the lights on while your staff is away. Painting is one of the first things people go to for upgrades, and it’s not a bad idea. The colors within your office can help create the mood you want throughout the whole space.

A big gamechanger is creating multi-use spaces or dividing up a floor plan to create some privacy while also keeping an open and inviting work area. Floating walls or large sliding floor-to-ceiling doors are good options to achieve this. Don’t forget updating the furnishing and fixtures throughout the space.

There are so many options for upgrading a leased space, and with the right planner and team of professionals, you can transform almost any space to fit your needs. At Topp Remodeling and Construction, we have an expert team that is proficient in turning unusable spaces into a truly functional working area. Bring your ideas to us today.

Renovation Trends this Summer

Home renovating was big business last year, and this year it’s expected to continue to rise. Renovating your home is a personal choice, and any changes you make should cater to you and your family’s needs first. Don’t renovate solely to help sell your home in the future; however, do keep that in mind as you start large, expensive projects. If you opt for DIY projects, make sure you do your research first and that you have the right tools and skills to finish your project professionally. With a well-designed approach, you can jump on the trendy wagon while also feeling confident that your investment won’t go out of style quickly. Here are some current hot trends that you may want to consider trying this year:

Colored kitchen cabinets – White cabinets have been popular for a long time, and they’re still classic. But bold colors in the kitchen are taking charge. Painting cabinets is not a massive undertaking, although it does require some skill and patience. Be brave and go for intense shades like greens, corals/pinks, and even black.

Converting spare rooms into offices – Many of us are working from home at least part of the time still. Even if you are back in the office, chances are you’ll get a lot more flexibility with your telecommuting situation. If you have a spare room that isn’t used much, consider making it an awesome office to make your working-from-home days more enjoyable. Don’t have a complete room to make the full switch? A multifunctional space can be easily created to meet all your demands.

Wallpaper – You’ve probably seen the bold print floral wallpaper somewhere, and it’s a hot item. Wallpaper is great way to bring in a personal touch in a brave way because it’s fairly easy to switch it out when you’re done with it. Right now, it’s big and colorful patterns that are in the spotlight and interior designers are loving it.

Install glass walls – Separating large, open spaces can be tricky, but with custom glass walls you can break up some of that space while still maintaining that airy and open feel. If you’re not ready for this leap inside, try out large windows, maybe even floor to ceiling, looking into the backyard that open all the way to bring the outside in.

Larger master bathrooms – Many homeowners are opening up their master bathroom space. Add elements like a double sink, a walk-in shower, better storage and shelving, heated floors, and touchless faucets. Our time cooped up through the pandemic taught many of us that we want to feel pampered while at home and an amazing master bathroom is a great way to make that happen.

Create a backyard oasis – This year, enjoy being in your own backyard with upgrades like an outdoor pergola, a fire pit area, or an outdoor kitchen with a nice grill or smoker. With a quality outdoor heater, you can keep the party going all year round.

We love to see people truly enjoy their homes every day, and we can make that happen for you. For quality renovation and remodeling services, trust in us today.

Avoid these Remodeling Mistakes

Avoid these Remodeling Mistakes

Remodeling your home is an exciting venture, but it can also be stressful. Since we’ve remodeled lots of home throughout the Wasatch Front, we thought we’d share some “what not to dos” with you:

Don’t Set Unrealistic Budgets

It’s easy to get caught up in the best of the best, but when it comes to your project, it’s important to keep a budget that won’t cause stress in the long run. If you spend way more than you want, even if the project turns out fantastic, you will likely feel resentful toward the new space. You don’t want to be stuck paying more for a project because of unrealistic expectations. Come up with a budget from the beginning planning stages and stay close to you, but allow an certain amount of wiggle room that won’t break the bank.

Stick with the Current Architectural Style

We can do a lot here at Topp Remodeling and Construction, but you’ll want to still try and match the current architectural style to keep everything cohesive. If you want a modern look but you’re in an older home, take some time to think out the design so that the remodeling doesn’t clash with your current structure or style.

Don’t Sacrifice Function for Appearance

Naturally you’ll want your remodel project to look good, but don’t make changes solely for looks if it makes the function of the space worse. Even if a space looks great, if it doesn’t function well for you, you will come to not enjoy it. Instead think of function first—how do you need to use the space and what your lifestyle is like, then make it look gorgeous after fitting those needs. With Topp Remodeling and Construction, we can help you meet your functional and aesthetic needs.

Don’t be Too Trendy

It’s a great idea to keep up with trends, but don’t fall prey to trendy looks that don’t serve your needs well. If you remodel just to fit a trend and it doesn’t work for your lifestyle, you’ll end up wanting to remodel again sooner than would otherwise be needed. Keep up on trends, but it’s a good idea to keep some traditional aspects to major projects to prevent the desire of doing it again.

Don’t buy Décor or Furniture Without a Design Plan

If you’re embarking on a major remodeling project, hold off on buying the décor or furniture for your new space until you know how the finished project will be. Make sure you have a good design plan before investing money on the goods you want to add to it when it’s completed. Map it out and take some time making sure the items will look good and will fit in the space.

Be Sure to Get a Permit for Your Project

Many projects will require a permit to complete. If you need one, don’t proceed without getting it. You don’t want to waste money on fines or create stress without getting your project approved first.

Topp Remodeling and Construction is aware of the many needs during a remodeling project. We’re here to guide you through the process, so don’t hesitate to bring your questions or concerns to us.

Kitchen Design Ideas for 2022

Kitchen Design Ideas for 2022

Updating your kitchen is one of the best ways to add value to your home. With so many options, it can be hard to settle on a final design and plan. Trends come and go, but it’s still possible to be current with popular styles and remain timeless at the same time. Here are some ideas to get you started.

Multi-purpose Kitchens

Today, we’re managing a lot more from home. Many of us have started remotely at least part of the time. This has required us to adapt our home environment to also be conducive to a work atmosphere, which can be tricky. Kitchen design approaches are helpful when focus is on a multi-use function. Features such as adding tech capabilities with wiring, charging stations, and screens or a nook for a small area to take zoom meetings in a quiet and clean spot. Larger countertop space is a good idea if you need an occasional makeshift desk.

Another hot item right now for people working from home is to add a built-in coffee station. By creating a functional area for your coffee fix in the morning, it saves you time and money to brew that liquid gold at home. Add an appliance garage to the space and tuck away all your plug-in, bulky appliances here, too for a clean and organized setup. When you’re working at home or helping kids with remote school, a well-designed kitchen is a must to keep frustration levels low.

Pantries and Storage

Butler pantries used to be reserved for storing fine china and extra serving ware. Today, they are a lot more functional. It’s common to add a sink and workspace in these areas to keep messes out of the gathering areas of your kitchen. Many move their microwave into the butler pantry, or even better, put a second one in there out of sight. If you have the space, build this area in between the kitchen and dining room makes entertaining a breeze.

Maximize storage with cabinetry up to the ceiling. Creative cabinetry is a big hit, so don’t be afraid to be brave. Mix large drawers with big cabinets and don’t forget to go bold with the hardware. Hide away a pantry with cabinetry so everything looks seamless.

Color, color, color

The all-white kitchen, although still lovely, is not the top trend right now. Create visual appeal by mixing colors and materials, such as bold dark cabinets—even black—with wood grains and soft muted tones, then top it off with mixed metals such as brass and nickel. If you currently have a beautiful white kitchen, throw in some splashes of intense colors here and there to keep the timeless look while bringing in the current vibe.

The finishing touches on your kitchen will pull everything together. Sconce lighting is popular around ranges, bringing in metallic elements adds a touch of modernism to the space, and even built-in pet beds for your furry loved one can looks amazing in kitchens.

With Topp Remodeling and Construction, the world is your oyster, but don’t get overwhelmed. We can help you with design ideas to ensure you get the kitchen of your dreams.

Your Specifics for Your Office Space

Your Specifics for Your Office Space

Your workspace impacts productivity and workflow, therefore affecting your bottom line. It also impacts the impression your customers will have of your business. Your space needs to function for your unique business and be welcoming to customers and employees. One-size-fits-all is not true for workplace spatial design. With a customized approach, all your specifications and needs are considered, creating a space that truly works for you. With residential builds, there can be a flexibility factored in, but with commercial build-outs, there are some aspects that cannot, and should not, be flexible. At Topp Construction, we understand those needs and ensure we stay on track so your business will stay running optimally.

Consider This

  1. Timelines: Whether you are expanding or remodeling, the timeline of the project is of upmost importance. Every day that your space needs to be closed is lost revenue. When bidding a project, your builder needs to be upfront about their timelines and make sure your deadlines will be accurately met.
  2. Return on Investment: With the right layout and build design, your workspace can be a haven for productive employees. Happier employees result in greater success, bringing in more money to the business. Additionally, an energy efficient setup will also save you money on your monthly power bills.
  3. Customization: Because each business is different, the ability to customize your space is a top priority. The right builder will address your unique needs and strive to deliver the best outcome for your business. Bring all your ideas to our professional team, and with our experience and knowledge, your office space dream can become a reality.
  4. Don’t Forget the Small Spaces: Often, there are spaces that are easily forgotten during a planning stage just to bring frustration when the job is completed. Consider the smaller spaces that you can get creative with to help your employees out. Think about if you want a larger break room so people can decompress throughout the day from time to time, or maybe you’d rather have a huge space that’s hidden for storing supplies or products. If you have awards or certain items to display, a focal point area can be a cool touch.
  5. Your Workplace Culture: The focus for your space shouldn’t just be structure and function. It also needs to fit your culture and business identity. Your workplace culture is commonly connected to your employees’ happiness while at work. A survey conducted by Deloitte Development showed that 88 percent of employees consider workplace culture an important component of the business’ success.
  6. Wiring Needs: In our tech-heavy age, wiring for all your electronics is important. A knowledgeable company can help you design the space for maximum efficiency when it comes to ethernet/wi-fi, lighting, power strips, printer setup, server rooms, workstations, and more.

It may seem stressful to think about a build-out, but don’t let that keep you from expanding your booming business. If you need a better design for your space or more of it, give Topp Remodeling & Construction a call. We’ll see your job from the beginning planning stages all the way to the end.

Why Curb Appeal Matters

Why Curb Appeal Matters

Don’t judge a book by its cover, right? As true as this is in the literary world, it’s a little different in the world of home ownership. The curb appeal of your home is what sets your initial expectations for the feel of the inside. Of course, you can have a beautiful interior and an exterior that needs some work, but to feel the best about your investment, it’s wise to put some time and money into the outside areas of your home too. It feels great to enter your neighborhood and see a lovely property in front of you instead of immediately coming up with to-do lists as you pull into the driveway. Often, curb appeal becomes a priority to homeowners once they’re trying to sell their home. But curb appeal is important for your needs, too, not just for prospective buyers. Whether you’re selling or staying put, the outside of your home makes a difference.

Deter Burglars with a Well-maintained Home

This may sound strange, but a home that shows off a well-maintained exterior and landscape actually can help prevent criminals from making your home their target. Maintaining a nice exterior shows burglars that you care enough about your property to take measures to protect it. You don’t necessarily need an expensive security system to ward off would-be burglars (although they do help!), just a little TLC can go a long way. Keep up to date on maintenance items with stucco, siding, windows, roofs, and more, and keep the outdoor space tidy. Consider clearing clutter or tall bushes and trees from access points to your home to limit hiding spots or unwanted entries while not being seen.

Additions and Remodeling

Rarely is it a good idea to take on large projects such as remodeling or additions yourself. For maximum curb appeal with added value, be sure to hire a high-quality, professional service to take care of these needs. Whether you want to add on a large amount of space or to remodel exterior features for a new porch area, no job is too small or too big for Topp Construction. When you’re adding onto a home, it’s important to ensure every connection is flawless and matches the rest of the home. It’s easy to see when corners don’t meet up correctly or stucco isn’t finished perfectly. Think of an addition as an upgrade to your whole home rather than simply adding space.

For many older homes, an update to the front of your home can be fairly simple. From extending porches to replacing siding with a more modern look, cosmetic options for the exterior of the home can make a big difference. Like additions, cosmetic updates should not be taken lightly. Small projects can quickly turn into big problems when not executed well.

To improve your curb appeal, start with minor fixes like repairing paint chips, trimming branches and maintaining a healthy landscape, cleaning exterior items such as windows and siding, and making sure the lighting outside your home matches and is functioning. For all your home remodeling needs, Topp Construction has you covered.

Open vs Closed Floor Plans

Open vs Closed Floor Plans

Building or remodeling a home is exciting. Be prepared for this new venture with a solid idea of the goals for your home. Be practical about how you live your life and create a space that works for your needs. Your home needs to function efficiently, but it also needs to feel comfortable and cozy to you, and that may look different to other people. Allow a good amount of time to think about the layout and floor plan of your space and how it will fit your unique lifestyle.

Open Floor Plans

Open floor plans have been popular for a while here in Utah. We love our family gatherings, and the kitchen always seems to be the landing spot whenever the kids are home or friends come over for a drink. Open floor plans have a lot of positives: they have great traffic flow with no walls or doors impeding movement, they share light from other rooms and can bring in elements of other areas of the home, they allow for easy visibility of the kids playing in the great room, and they offer a great deal of flexibility with the many multifunctional options the area can create. For many social people, open floor plans are a real winner. Before you jump on that open floor plan, there are some considerations to pay attention to. Open floor plans can be noisy with a large space for voices to carry. They also require a bit more daily maintenance because there’s no way to close that door on the messy adjoining space. Your design choices may need to be a bit more streamlined where several spaces will be visible at one time. With any design, there are pros and cons. Your lifestyle will determine if an open floor plan is for you.

Closed Floor Plans

Closed floor plans were very common in the 70s and they’re making a bit of a comeback. Benefits of a more closed floor plan include enhanced privacy and quiet spaces. Many families enjoy having separate spaces for separate activities, especially if children have vastly different hobbies or if your family has different work or school schedules. As we’ve been home a bit more during covid, we’re coming to value our privacy a bit more, creating a need to close up some of those otherwise open spaces. Closed floor plans are also easier to contain messes—when someone drops by unannounced, it’s a lot easier to stash the laundry out of site for a few minutes. Closed floor plans are also great for creating specialized spaces such a music rooms, libraries, or home offices. These floor plans can feel intimate and cozy. However, these homes can also feel tight or crowded for some people and they may not offer as much natural light as an open plan.

Before you jump on the trendy open great room/kitchen combo floor plan, make sure the openness is what you and your family really enjoy. Likewise, before you decide on full privacy, make sure you consider your entertaining needs and designing style. At Topp Construction, we build custom homes for any lifestyle and can bring whatever elements you desire into your dream home.