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Articles filed under Home Improvement

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  • Time for dreams to grow May 18, 2014 1:01 AM
    Twenty-four years ago I moved in as a happy family with husband and kids with dreams of building a deck, doing some nice landscaping and being able to have family and friends over and entertain during the warm months out back. Well, things did not go as planned.

  • Restore yard to former beauty May 18, 2014 1:01 AM
    Twenty-five years ago when we bought this home, my husband promised me a new deck if I settled for a house that was in less than mint condition. Well still no deck, not even an improved patio. Same cracks, same wooden flower beds, same area under the eaves where nothing seems to grow.

  • Pie-shaped yard a challenge May 15, 2014 1:01 AM
    We have a small pie-shaped backyard that has been a huge challenge to work with. Now that the kids have all grown up and begun to move on, I would love to have a new backyard to entertain the adults in the neighborhood, or in which to just relax on a quiet summer evening.

  • Updates badly needed May 15, 2014 1:01 AM
    Seven years ago we bought a townhouse and planned to live in for three to five years, then buy bigger home and start family. Two years later, market tanked, housing values tanked and we were stuck! It took us eight years to save enough to buy a bigger home!

  • Yard, deck not welcoming May 15, 2014 1:01 AM
    When we moved to our house 15 years ago, we were excited about our large deck and backyard and looked forward to spending our summers entertaining. This was especially true as we met all our neighbors and settled into the community.

  • Gardening allows for more healthy food choices May 15, 2014 7:01 AM
    Homeowners are increasingly choosing to plant, carefully water and eventually harvest their own food to put on their tables. Garden centers around the area are responding to this interest by offering more and more vegetable plants and fruit plants, shrubs and trees, as well as organic seeds and other supplies to facilitate this movement.

  • Small-kitchen measures and countermeasures May 3, 2014 1:01 AM
    Designer Iantha Carley, who has participated in three DC Design Houses and whose aesthetic is known for its use of unexpected patterns, textures and colors, was the guest recently on The Washington Post staff writer Jura Koncius’ Home Front online chat.

  • High-profile modern kitchens benefit from innovative ways to renovate May 8, 2014 12:11 PM
    As recently as 50 years ago, kitchens in the United States were primarily thought of as efficient, closed-off and back-of-house spaces solely focused on food preparation and dish washing. These days, kitchens are often a highly visible component of open-house plan concepts, places where guests are entertained and kids do their homework.

  • Chicago winters wreak havoc on roofs Apr 26, 2014 5:45 AM
    We have just experienced one of the most brutal winters in decades. Heavy snow and subzero temperatures have taken a toll on the roofs of our homes. Finally, spring has arrived! Now is the time to inspect your home’s roof and gutters.

  • Update your living space with a small balcony makeover Apr 25, 2014 5:45 AM
    If your apartment or condo has a small terrace, the warm weather of spring and summer should ignite you to make the most of that great spot for entertaining (even if you just have space for two!)

  • Aging gracefully in your home Apr 23, 2014 5:45 AM
    Despite their active lifestyle, when the McSweenys built their Edgewater, Md., house in 2013, they asked their architect to incorporate “aging-in-place” features — including an elevator, wide doorways to accommodate a wheelchair and a flat, no-step entryway — into the design.

  • Lucky homeowners get landscaping makeovers Apr 19, 2014 6:00 AM
    Last summer six readers were chosen as winners in our “Get Your Summer On” outdoor makeover contest. Now, you can see the results of their winnings, with the prizes from the contest sponsors in place in their yards.

  • How to add an extra room Apr 19, 2014 1:01 AM
    Q. I need some additional living space for my family and for an apartment in which my parents will live someday. I was thinking of adding a room above my two-car garage. Is this a feasible project, and how should I design it?

  • How to organize a bulk-item storage area Apr 13, 2014 12:01 AM
    When you shop at discount warehouse stores such as Costco and Sam’s Club, you likely come home with enormous products — 24-count paper towel packs, laundry detergent jugs larger than your smallest child and cases of canned goods — and all of these oversized items need to be stored somewhere in your home.

  • Dining room table should reflect homeowner’s lifestyle Apr 13, 2014 5:30 AM
    Dining rooms are stellar rooms for drama. Just think of the exquisite scenes set in “Downton Abbey’s” dining rooms. Whether you love intimate dinners or enjoy large dinner parties, there are certain considerations. Whatever your scenario, the decor of your dining room is as important as the food that is served there.

  • Flooring trends, like popular decor, are always evolving Apr 11, 2014 6:07 AM
    Though not always top of mind when designing or renovating, there is no question that the single biggest visual element in a home is the floor. Flooring sets the mood of a room and ties a space together. For this reason, putting your floor to work as a warm visual element is paramount.

  • Des Plaines launches home improvement contest Apr 10, 2014 4:55 PM
    Des Plaines Mayor Matt Bogusz launched a community beautification contest this week aimed at recognizing homeowners who take pride in their properties. “I’m trying to find a way to develop a public-private partnership to celebrate homeowners who take great pride in their homes, but also inspire and make it a little bit easier to check a few more things off their list this year,” Bogusz said.

  • Kitchen renovation adds space, improves traffic flow Mar 31, 2014 2:01 AM
    Maureen Willenborg of Arlington Heights badly wanted to revamp her old kitchen. Tired of trying to squeeze into the snug space, she was ready to make a change.

  • Home improvement tips learned the hard way Mar 26, 2014 5:30 AM
    ‘Tis the season for home improvement projects, and weekend warriors will soon be visiting home supply retailers to buy everything from paint to plywood. There are many advantages to making home improvements on your own, including the opportunity to test your mettle at projects big and small.

  • Sealing a driveway will extend its life Mar 25, 2014 5:45 AM
    Installing an asphalt or a concrete driveway can be an expensive undertaking. To preserve the fresh, new look of the driveway, have the driveway sealed and then routinely seal it to keep it looking pristine.

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