Sep

25

Bump Out Creates the Space We Wanted

To follow up on last month’s blog on our master bathroom remodel, the project was completed about four years ago.

Here’s the thing – it feels like we just remodeled it, that’s how new it still feels to us. I guess we picked the right tile, colors, fixtures, lighting and overall design, because (with the risk of sounding corny here!) I honestly feel like I am looking at a photo posted on Houzz every time I walk into our bath and walk in closet.

I mentioned the closet as a bump out addition to our bath project, but didn’t give details in last month’s blog about WHY we bumped it out and made our house bigger. We wanted too much, as our “wish list” included a glass surround walk in shower and a bigger closet. While Callen’s designers are fantastic, one thing they can’t create out of thin air is space.

The solution – a bump out suggested by Callen’s design team, an outside the box idea that I at first wasn’t too sure about. Am I glad I listened to Callen the experts! It was the only solution, as we achieved almost three additional feet of spaced, a window facing south that we never had and that much coveted glass shower that we all want. The outside of our home also looks bigger and better balanced.

But back to what I left off at in August – how to put the “WOW” in your home. This bathroom is now efficient, beautiful, and that WOW factor was added to the interior and exterior of our home.

As we’ve advanced as homeowners, we’ve learned that every home needs some pop, something that you should enjoy. Realtors often say sellers remodel to help sell their house, but then say “we wish we would have done this years ago, so we could have enjoyed it.” Don’t make that mistake. It’s your house and you live there. Be sure to make it what you want and enjoy it!

Paul Kronforst, WISN-AM 1130

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Aug

28

Master Bath Renovation Improves Home’s Interior and Exterior

Master Bath Renovation Improves Home’s Interior and ExteriorAs I said at the outset of the blogs I am writing on behalf of Callen, I started with current projects and I’m going back in time with the projects we have completed with the company. More than four years ago, our master bathroom was in dire need of a makeover. We had a pink toilet and whirlpool with all brass fixtures, a closet that extended off of the bathtub, and a very small shower. We weren’t sure what to do, we just knew we wanted an update with the possibility of a bigger closet.

This is where the Callen designers shine. We were asked to think outside the box and consider extending the bathroom about three feet, which is no small task. By adding a window and gable, our home was literally pushed out three feet. This new space accommodated the walk-in closet we wanted.

Master Bath Renovation Improves Home’s Interior and ExteriorTo this day, we look at the bathroom like it is still brand new. We not only get the daily enjoyment of the Kohler whirlpool, the glass surround shower, the double vanity, flat screen TV, and the huge closet (which has a view), but the renovation added tremendous value to our home. If it wasn’t for our designer making that suggestion, we still only have the same small space without the dramatic change provided by the new gable and window. The exterior now looks complete and more balanced.

Another item on our wish list for the space were heated floors, but we were concerned about the cost. However, the installation of electric mats that are much more cost-effective allowed this wish to become a reality. We now have a heated floor in both the bathroom and the closet so the tile is warm during our Wisconsin winters (which in my opinion is about six months out of the year!).

We use the heated floors all the time and with the dual thermostats, we can make the floor and the air above it as warm as we desire. Keep in mind that heat rises, so heated floors heat the entire room, which you feel when walking in.

Paul Kronforst Master Bath Renovation Improves Home’s Interior and ExteriorI will discuss more details regarding this extensive bathroom remodeling project in future blogs, but for now, be sure to look at the accompanying photos. Notice the tile work in the glass shower, the walls, and the floors. The large walk-in closet that we absolutely love. The double vanity sinks. And yes, we use that flat screen TV in the bathroom. It is great for taking a soak and watching football on a cool fall afternoon!

Until next month, when we talk more about how Callen has put the “WOW” in home remodeling at our house.

– Paul Kronforst

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Jul

31

Window Project Enhances Look and Improves Comfort

So, you saw photos of the latest window installed by Callen at our home in Cedarburg. It has the “WOW” factor that Callen refers to when talking about the remodeling jobs it completes.

Callen Bog - Paul Kronforst July 2017 073117 IMG_4822Well, the project is now all done! This was a BIG window that required new insulation all around it. Callen not only showed me the old rotted wood, but explained what they planned to do after the window was in. Yes, those details like caulking, sealing it up, and cleaning the job site so everything looks perfect.

I don’t have much time for household jobs, as cutting the grass and general maintenance inside and outside is about all I want and have time to do. I despise painting, and do it only when absolutely necessary.

I know some homeowners want to paint to save a bit of money. Great, if that’s your thing. This job required scaffolding and a VERY large ladder. The inside trim was entirely replaced and required priming, a coat of paint… and lots of work up high on that ladder (Did I mention that I’m also terrified of heights). I told Callen I would prefer not to paint and have them do it. They said they have their own painting crews (avoiding subcontractors) and these skilled painters did what they do best – paint!

Callen Bog - Paul Kronforst July 2017 073117 IMG_4844I could not be happier with how it matched our existing white trim and how clean and precise the painting was. Callen really does it all… I didn’t have to lift a finger, except to take the pictures when it was finished!

This window has been in for a few weeks and the air conditioner is on this summer in the Kronforst household, but it is not kicking in as much. It is also much cooler, with less humidity in the house. I am convinced the previous large window was the culprit. As I explained in my blog last month, when the seals on that window became ineffective (it was the biggest piece of glass in our home), we were in trouble.

I cannot wait to discuss our master bath (featuring a large glass walk-in shower) and bump out walk-in closet project done a few years ago for the next blog, complete with before and after photos. This renovation added so much to our entire home’s “WOW” factor and value.

Until then, check out Callen’s website with a gallery of photos or its Facebook page, which is loaded with terrific information (and more photos).

Paul Kronforst, WISN-AM 1130

Callen Bog - Paul Kronforst July 2017 073117 IMG_4856

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Jun

26

New Window – WOW!

In my first two blogs, I explained I was starting with the most current remodeling projects that Callen completed on our home and work backwards. The timing was perfect, because we just finished the biggest window installation that I’ve ever been through.

 

In the pictures accompanying this blog, you can clearly see a large platform lift was needed to not only remove the old rotted wood window, but also install the new Infinity from Marvin Fiberglass Replacement Window we chose. There was also an urgency to the project, as my wife and I were leaving the country for a couple weeks and we wanted the installation completed before we left.

Then the rain came, which delayed the install. Callen, which excels in communication, worked around all of those obstacles and got everything done and finished on time before we left, so we could rest at ease.

The old window had a broken seal, you could visibly see fog and condensation, and it was just hideous. We even had some rain coming in on the north side of our house due to this rotted window and broken seal. The Callen crew leader, Robert, brought my phone up on the lift and took photos of the cavity so I could see the rotted window and what the inside of the wall looked like. The new window went in with ease, and they finished off the wood trim inside. They fixed everything!

In my previous blogs, I stated this was the final window to be installed by Callen, as over the years, we did three or four each year. Now we are completely sealed with new Infinity from Marvin Fiberglass Replacement Windows.

Here’s an interesting point, which I didn’t think about before we left for vacation – we returned home to 90° temperatures in early June. The air conditioning is not going on nearly as often, and my house is to the point where my kids noticed the rooms are chilly! So I turned the thermostat up a couple degrees. Obviously, we’re saving money and the air conditioner is running more efficiently.

As you can see, it looks much better as well, with the grids on the inside of the glass giving a cleaner, more streamlined appearance. This window was so large that I probably didn’t realize how much heat we lost in winter and of course I have a tight and very cool home for these warm summer days! The best part is the curb appeal. This window is now our WOW factor!

Next month’s blog will talk about little details, like painting the inside trim. I don’t like ladders (or painting), so I have the experts at Callen care for those things. Talk to you soon.

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