Monthly Archives: August 2012

Consider Semi-Custom Cabinets for Your Kitchen Remodel

custom kitchen cabinets

Portland Remodel works with the best cabinet makers in the Portland metro area.


Of all the home improvement projects you can take on, a kitchen remodel can improve your home’s value the most. In fact, according to the National Association of Realtors, in 2010 a kitchen remodeling project yielded a 69 percent return on investment – one of the highest among all remodeling projects. However, many homeowners assume they can only achieve the richness they desire by installing custom cabinets. This simply isn’t the case.


Semi-custom cabinets can add significantly more perceived value than base-model cabinets, yet are more cost effective than custom cabinetry. Additionally, semi-custom cabinets provide many stylistic options in wood, door design and color.


When you combine custom doors and other accents with stock cabinets, not only are you saving money on the cabinets, but you are also able to set aside a greater portion of your overall kitchen remodel budget for other features – such as upgraded countertops or appliances. And if you are thinking about resale value, the money you invest into the kitchen can increase its appraised value and add more appeal for potential buyers.


Semi-custom cabinets have greater size choices and features than base-model cabinets, giving you more floor plan and storage options. These cabinets can be specifically designed to hold spices, large pots and lids, and even your heavy KitchenAid® mixer. Let’s face it: increasing the storage and work efficiency of your kitchen adds to your enjoyment of it.

You can also expect the quality of the materials and workmanship in semi-custom cabinets to be higher, too. Base-level cabinets are often manufactured with particleboard for the cabinets and shelves, and coated with laminate or thermofoil – both of which wear away quickly. Particleboard as a building material also absorbs humidity and moisture, a real detriment in a kitchen where the humidity is higher and spills are frequent. Particleboard also sags under heavy loads, which means you have to watch how much weight each shelf holds. Most semi-custom cabinets use veneer-covered plywood as the construction material, a far stronger and more resilient type of shelving.

A kitchen remodel is a commitment of time and money. Your cabinets are both functional and decorative, and when you’re considering upgrading this well-used room, choosing value-driven products that last, and bring efficiency and beauty to your home is always a good move

Our specialty at Portland Remodel is Kitchens. We consider it the ‘heart’ of your home.  We are experts at making your kitchen remodel a great experience.
Contact us at 503.244.3525 or


Add Interest with These Bathroom Flooring Choices

Bathroom remodels

When it comes to flooring choices these days, you have hundreds of choices – carpet, tile, wood, laminate, linoleum and stone … just to name a few. And when it comes to installing a new floor in your bathroom, you may have an idea or two of the options you want to investigate further to see which will work best for your home.

But picking out the right flooring option for your bathroom is more than liking a sample you saw at the home improvement store. You’ll want to consider the entire picture: the wall color, the bathroom fixtures, and the natural and artificial lighting.

One of the more popular flooring choices for the bathroom is ceramic tile. Not only is it durable, it is also easy to maintain and keep clean. It comes in a variety of shapes, sizes and colors, and is much less slippery than traditional high-gloss tile.

Before you decide, however, consider these interesting flooring choices – which may (or may not) work for your bathroom.

Marble Tile
Marble has always been an elegant choice for bathroom floors. For starters, marble is extremely versatile, and it also works well on walls and countertops. Like ceramic tile, marble is available in many shapes and sizes, so you can create an interesting “art” focal point on the floor.

Glass Tile
Glass tile is quickly becoming a popular choice for bathroom floors. It comes in all shapes, sizes and colors – in either high-gloss or a more matted finish. And some tiles are made from recycled material, making them one of the more environmentally friendly options.

Many people do not think of wood as a viable option for a bathroom, but it can be. Hardwood floors have always been one of the most popular choices for new flooring, and the bathroom is a great place to install them, providing you are willing to put in a little more work into taking proper care of them. They can easily be restored and refinished, increasing the practicality and longevity.

Modular Carpeting
If you are looking for a soft, plush option, then this is the way to go. These carpets are specifically designed to prevent the growth of bacteria and mold when they become wet, and are relatively cheap to install.

Bamboo and Cork
These flooring choices are great alternatives for “green-conscious” homeowners. When removed from their habitat, these materials are able to replenish themselves in just a few years. Additionally both bamboo and cork are naturally resistant to bacteria, mold and mildew.

No matter what option you decide upon, there are endless possibilities and choices to make your bathroom have the look and feel that you’ve been looking for.
At Portland Remodel we work with top designers at several show rooms that can help pick what’s right for your new bathroom and your budget. 503.244.3525

6 Ways to Turn Your Outdoor Kitchen into a Masterpiece

Outdoor Kitchens in the Northwest

Portland Remodel builds outdoor Kitchen in the Portland Metro Area

Outdoor kitchens are fast becoming the must-have feature for your home, especially for people who love to entertain. But what does it take to turn any-ol’ outdoor kitchen into a fabulous masterpiece? Here are a few ideas:

Pizza Oven – Custom-built pizza ovens are becoming more readily available to the cook-out enthusiasts. Many of these are gorgeous – some even come direct from Italy – and they make amazing outdoor focal-points. Don’t be surprised when your neighbors peer over the backyard fence begging for an invitation. (And you can throw away that pizza delivery number as well!)

Dining Space – What is an outdoor kitchen without an outdoor dining room? Set the mood. Hang a chandelier that is filled with real candles and surround it with some comfortable dining chairs that encourage people to linger.

Herb Garden – Every gourmet cook knows an herb garden in close proximity to his or her outdoor kitchen is a must. Nothing beats cooking with fresh herbs within seconds of picking them. Choose a good spot according to the herb’s growing needs. If you don’t have a garden spot in the ground, plant your herbs in interesting containers, which make for unique decorations, too.

Wine Bar – When you see modern kitchen designs today in glossy magazines, you often see a wine bar included. You can also incorporate a wine bar into an outdoor kitchen, with a few adjustments for the weather, of course. When the conversation is flowing, you don’t want to stop it with a trip inside for another bottle of wine. Keep it handy right there in your backyard kitchen.

Meat Smoker – Not just for southern barbecues anymore, a smoker, either built-in or portable, is another fabulous over-the-top feature in an outdoor kitchen. You’ll find plenty of recipes to smoke your own foods in the comfort of your own backyard.

Built-In Wok – If you like to stir-fry in a wok, you know how much heat and steam, and sometimes smoke, they can cause. Moving this method of cooking outside is a great way to enjoy your wok-cooked meals without smoking-up the inside of your home. And there’s nothing like serving up perfectly seasoned veggies and seafood under the stars.

If cooking and entertaining in your backyard are things you do often, with the addition of these amenities, not only will you “wow” your friends and neighbors, but you will also create lasting memories from the enjoyment you gain from the space.

Let Portland Remodel help you design an outdoor living space that you can use year round.

An Overview of Home Security Systems

Home Security Systems

Home burglaries are on the rise. Just watch your local evening news to see that crimes are happening every day. In fact, in the U.S. every 20 seconds someone discovers that a stranger has invaded their home.

Unfortunately, no one is exempt from a home break-in – not even in the best neighborhoods. From everyday citizens to celebrities, senators and even police officers, a home is burglarized without consideration for who lives in it. If the homeowner is lucky, the only things the thieves take are personal possessions. Those can be replaced. Once someone has stolen your peace of mind, however, it’s much harder to get back.

Home security systems can make sure that your security needs are taken care of, but before you begin, make sure you know which system you want.

For starters, be aware that most security companies require a signed contract – which includes a monthly monitoring fee. You’ll want to read the contract carefully to see what you’re committing to.

Also keep in mind that not all systems are built alike. You can find some home security systems that will encompass all of the entry points in your home (windows, doors, basement, etc.) and you can find others that will cover only a few entry points – making you choose which ones are covered. Before thinking this is a bad option, think of it from this example. Say you have a three-story home. Odds are you won’t need the third floor windows to be wired into the security system – unless there is a way for an intruder to gain easy access to a third floor window (such as a fire escape).

With home security systems, you’ll get a main control panel and perhaps additional keypads to place at different entry points (depending on your specific plan). The type of monthly monitoring package you get depends on whether you go with one where your home is observed 24/7 or whether you elect a less expensive service.

Further, before you decide to install a motion detection system, you’ll need to take into account your family’s activities. For instance, if you have someone who gets up to go to work in the middle of the night and doesn’t get to the alarm control in time, it could wake the entire house. Or if you have college students or young adults living at home who come and go at all hours, a motion sensor system might not be your best choice.

How much does it cost? The two main costs to consider are installation and monitoring. Home security systems are going to cost you based on the level of protection you buy. If you buy a plan that monitors the outside of your home as well as the inside, you can expect to pay anywhere from $400 on up for installation, plus a monthly fee.

If you are considering investing in a home security system, just remember to review all the options – and not be scared into buying more than you need. Sometimes the best deterrent for random neighborhood break-ins is having a basic security system and posting the security logo out front.

Portland Remodel partners with the best companies to help you design and figure out your home security needs. Call us today. 503.244.3525

Portland Remodel Home Owner Tips

refurbished furnitureRecycle Your Furniture to Create a New Look

Creating a new look for your home can be expensive unless you use a few money-saving tricks. Many people believe that they must purchase complete new furniture in order to redecorate, and this simply isn’t the case. Professional decorators and remodelers know that you can get a totally new look by recycling your old furniture. Don’t know where to start? Here are a few ways to turn your furniture into a treasured new look:

Refurbish Your Dining Set
Matching dining room furniture can make a room look boring, stuffy and outdated, but breaking up the set can make a big impact – and give your space a refreshing new look. Keep the dining table, and add mismatched chairs to create a more casual, eclectic feel. The dining chairs can then be repurposed throughout your home – in the hall, family room, or even in a bedroom.

Paint or Refinish
If your old furniture is still in relatively good condition, you can paint or refinish it. Give dull furniture a new look by using some high-gloss paint in a bright color. A pop of color will give your room a focal point as well as providing a conversation piece for your guests. This is a cheap and easy method that breathes new life into old furnishings.

Recover Soft Furnishings
Recovering old sofas or chairs is another way to update timeworn pieces. With a few yards of fabric, you could turn that dated-green sofa into a beautiful modern showpiece. No one will ever guess your “new” piece used to look like Granny’s old couch! Bold colors and prints will give you the most impact, but you may also want to consider a more neutral look – depending on the space and natural light available in the room.

Whatever way you choose to recycle your old furniture, remember to have fun. For the price of a little paint or fabric, you can have a whole new room. So don’t even think about throwing out that old table. With a little imagination, those once-tired pieces can quickly become your new favorites.

Portland Remodel works alongside some great decorators in the Portland Metro area. We can help you find the perfect fit for your remodeling project and your budget.


Kitchen Remodeling: Getting the Kitchen You Want

"kithen remodels"Kitchen Remodeling is a specialty at Portland Remodel.

When it comes to home improvement, one of the best bangs for your buck is a kitchen remodel. Whether you are looking to remodel your entire kitchen or just give it a face-lift, upgrading your kitchen is one of the most noticeable – and pleasurable – changes you can make to your home.

Before you get started with your kitchen-remodeling project, though, it is important to do your research. A kitchen has many “layers” to it – full of features and functions. You can become easily overwhelmed with the vast array of choices, so do not rush into any spur-of-the-moment purchases or decisions. This is not a room to “piece together” without the full vision in place.

A kitchen remodel can involve everything from tearing down walls to simply painting cabinets and adding new hardware. Before you begin, you must determine your goals and your budget. Once you have your budget in place, you should review your goals for the space. What are you trying to accomplish? Do you want more countertop space, more storage or simply a new look (or all three)?
Another way to approach it is by asking, “If I could wave a magic wand, what three things would I change instantly?”

Once you know your goals for the space, it is time to begin your research for the changes you want to make in your kitchen. Start with your top priority and determine the cost. Deduct that cost from your budget and continue onward in order of importance. You may find yourself making adjustments and changes as you move through this process, in order to get the kitchen you want.

Before making any final purchases, you should also consider the cost, quality, functionality and durability of your items. Make sure that all items function well together and that, when installed, they will add value to your home – and years of enjoyment to your kitchen.