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Post Holiday greens - Artisans Bay Magazine - Winter 2013
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Post Holiday greens - Artisans Bay Magazine - Winter 2013

If you’re like me at this time of year, your thoughts turn to spring and the longing for sunshine and warm weather.  We go from visions of sugar plums, to anticipating the intoxicating smells of fresh greenery, spring flowers, and... paint! 

Spring is the season when we all start thinking about new projects, but as any seasoned gardener or renovator knows, the time to start planning your spring project is now.  Maybe it’s finally time to give the kitchen a facelift, update the bathroom, create a walk-in closet or a basement family room.  If you already have some idea of what you want to do, start contacting contractors, trades, or professionals.  This is the time to get quotes, contracts, bookings and ordering materials.  If you wait until you are ready to start tearing down the walls,  your spring project may just become a fall or winter one! 

Ask friends, neighbors, and relatives for recommendations and referrals for contractors they have been happy with – not everyone is equally proficient at every type of job, and the old adage, “you get what you pay for”, as i have found over the years, is usually fairly accurate.  

The lowest price is not necessarily the most important feature of a quote.  There is also considerable value in having a job done in the timeframe predicted, and for the amount specified.  I have also found that certain contractors will work to your schedule, i.e., not paint your kitchen while you try to make dinner, or start hammering something before you’ve had your coffee.  

Keeping a tidy worksite, consistent hours, and care and concern for your home such as taping off areas being worked on (avoiding collateral damage and mess) are also highly valued traits of residential contracting.  Before you hire a contractor, make sure to ask about these kinds of things, and anything else that might be important to you, such as insurance, qualifications, and accreditation.  Any professional tradesperson that does work on your home is now also required to have a valid BCIN (Building Code Identification Number) under most circumstances.  

If you are doing your own remodelling or renovation and  need inspiration, consider visiting some of the upcoming homeshows in the area.  The Quinte Home Builder’s Association puts on the fabulous “Quinte Home and Renovation” show the first weekend in April this year, at the new Quinte Sports and Wellness Centre.  Check out their website at  http://quintehomebuilders.com for current information and a list of member businesses and contractors. 

Two weeks later, on the weekend of April  19 – 21, you’ll find the Quinte West Home show, at Duncan McDonald Memorial Community Gardens in Trenton.  Have a look at their website for further details:  http://quintewesthomeshow.com If you need help in planning, pricing, or managing your project, contact a professional.  There are many decorators, designers, architects and project managers in the area that would be happy to assist you in realizing the home of your dreams. 

You can find them in the yellow pages, the above-mentioned websites, at professional websites such as ARIDO (Association of Registered Interior Designers of Ontario), IDO or IDC, or just by googling the type of pro you need along with your location. 

Pick up a copy of the latest decorating magazines, or surf the web.  Get inspired by fresh colour schemes, innovations in building or products, or some of the great interiors you’ll find.  Some websites such as IKEA, Home Depot, and Hunter Douglas have design centres where you can “try on” colours, styles, and window treatments. 

Dream it, plan it, then make it happen!

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