The Most Wonderful Time of Year to Plan a Remodeling Project

The Most Wonderful Time of Year to Plan a Remodeling Project

The holidays, the time of year we are supposed to enjoy with family, relax, and not be stressed out. This month, I’m going to give some personal remodeling advice that I hope helps alleviate some stress and give you something to ponder with regard to your next remodeling project.

The common thought is to wait to until after the holidays are done to begin thinking about remodeling the house. Now I know what a lot of you are thinking – we start the holidays way too early. If you’ve been to stores, you have seen holiday lights up since before Halloween. Is this early? Perhaps. My point is, at the mention of “the holidays,” many of you reading this begin to stress out. The last thing on your mind is likely your next remodeling project.

Here’s my advice – start thinking and planning for remodeling your home now. It takes your mind in another direction, and don’t worry, there will still be plenty of time to trim the tree and bake cookies. Giving your brain something else to work on is a healthy and positive move, in my opinion.

Also, designers need time to well, design. There is a great deal of communication and planning required for kitchen, bathroom, and lower level remodeling projects that you can do even before the Callen crew would show up at your house to begin that exciting project.

The sooner your start the planning, the sooner the project will be done. You get a jump-start on others and will likely be done before the first robin arrives in spring.

Exterior projects are the same. Callen can and will install windows, doors, siding, and roofing in winter!

So, go ahead and start the holidays – hang the lights, decorate your house, shop for gifts, and bake cookies. But don’t forget to start thinking, planning, and meeting with a designer at Callen to start your remodeling project. It may just take some of the stress out of the most wonderful time of year!

Happy Holidays (yes, a bit early) to everyone!

Paul Kronforst



Home Renovation Trends for 2017 and Beyond

No matter how much you love your home’s current layout, there will always be new design ideas and trends to tickle your fancy. Just remember to choose trends with staying power that will truly enhance the beauty and personality of your home. As we near the end of 2016 and look forward to the new year, consider these popular home renovation trends when planning your next project, brought to you courtesy of Callen Construction, the leading remodeling company in Milwaukee.

Home Renovation Trends for 2017 and BeyondCozy Fireplaces

The homey warmth of a fireplace is always in style. Whether you want to save energy with a wood-burning fireplace or prefer to avoid the mess and hassle of wood by using gas, the fireplace and surrounding mantel will quickly become the focal point of your room. Fireplace surrounds made of stone or stone accents can be rustic or elegant, depending on the rest of your decor. Group furniture around it during fall and winter months for the perfect gathering place to relax, unwind, and count your blessings.

Cool Colors

Combinations of blues and greys continue to gain in popularity for paint colors and home accessories. Shades of blue with grey undertones give a calming aura to your home, while deeper blues and blue with green undertones add a bold, yet still sophisticated, feel. And if you’re looking for a little elegance, a neutral grey color scheme paired with warm colors and rich wood accents is the way to go.

Marvelous Marble

If you love the timeless look of marble but can’t afford a large-scale renovation, try bringing its classic coolness to a smaller space: the bathroom. Accent the room with a marble backsplash, or go bigger with marble flooring. Even small home accessories made from marble will add elegance.

Trust the Experts at Callen

If you would like to incorporate any of these trends into your bathroom or kitchen remodeling in Brookfield, contact Callen today at 414-765-2585. We look forward to getting your home renovation underway.



Pick the Perfect Paint

By Doreen Schofield

Giving a room a fresh paint job is a great way to start clean and give the room a whole new theme and feel, according to Doreen Schofield, a designer with Callen. Doreen explains how to choose the perfect paint color to give it a brand new vibe, as well as when you’re planning an extensive interior remodel.

“Color accounts for 60 percent of our response to an object or place, so it’s important to pick a color that will set the mood for the room,” said Doreen.

When it comes to bedrooms, blue is a favorite choice because it is calming and a logical choice for slumber-inducing relaxation. Soft, cool colors and neutrals create a quieter feeling while stronger colors are more for drama.

“The dining room is another story. Warmer, contrasting, and somewhat brighter colors add to a sociable atmosphere while deeper blue-greens will give it a more formal ambiance.”

Doreen also mentioned the importance of lighting. “Natural daylight shows the truest color, incandescent lighting brings out warm tones, and fluorescent lighting casts a sharp blue tone.” While keeping this in mind, a strong color may be too bright and overpowering when used on all of your walls or walls next to large windows. Strong colors will be more effective when used on an accent wall with indirect light.

“Consider choosing a color for one room and painting the adjacent space two shades lighter or darker using tones from the same color chip.” Doreen explained this creates a smooth, seamless transition between the spaces.

Interior Design Paint ColorsOne way to decide on a paint color is to find inspiration around you and build off key elements in your house. A painting, rug, or piece of furniture may inspire the theme for the entire room. Once you decide on a color scheme that reflects your mood, start small by experimenting in a bathroom or in a hallway to see if the paint captures the look you were going for.

“Remember, think of the vibe you want your room to hold, take lighting into account, and always fall back to the trusty color wheel for making complementary and color cohesive choices.”

Callen’s design specialists can assist you in selecting the best colors for your renovated space. Call Callen, the leading remodeling company in Brookfield, for inspiration on how to get started.



Tips to Stay Organized During a Remodeling Project

No doubt about it, remodeling is disruptive to your house, your family, your personal routine, and even your pets. But with some planning, it is possible to survive major renovations without excessive stress.

Callen offers some tips to minimize the inconvenience. First, and very important, have a designated place to keep the paperwork relevant to the remodel – quotes, invoices, receipts, contact information, contracts, and the like. While some correspondence will be done electronically, you will still have hard copies of items that you will want to access. When it comes to email, create a separate sent and received folder designated specifically for remodeling correspondence.

Stay Organized During A RemodelStaging your temporary kitchen

If you plan to stay in your home during a kitchen remodel, set up a temporary kitchen elsewhere – living room, dining room, spare bedroom, even the basement, with your microwave, electric frying pan, slow cooker, and toaster oven. You may be getting a new fridge with your project, so have your old one relocated to the garage or within another area of the house if you have room for it.

Stay organized when packing goods from the cabinets and pantry. When storing items you won’t need during the remodel, label the storage boxes specifically with what is inside them. Avoid the word miscellaneous. It will be much more pleasant when you are putting things back after the project is finished.

Prepare as many meals in advance as possible, freezing them in individual portions for easy-to-fix dinners. Keep a stash of granola bars, fruit, peanut butter, and crackers for easy snacking.

Plastic and paper rule as dishwashing will be a challenge. Pots and pans will most likely be washed in the bathtub or laundry tub. Be prepared with a dishpan, dish drainer, and lots of cloths for washing and wiping.

There may be times when water and electric will be shut off. Your project manager should alert you to those so you can make alternate plans, staying with relatives, arranging a sleep-over for your children with their friends, or booking a motel.

Bathroom strategies

Remodeling a bathroom may pose no extra inconveniences if you have a second full bath or at least a powder room. But if it’s your only facility, you need to plan in advance.

If your home has only one toilet, arrange with your project manager to take out and reset the toilet on a daily basis. However, there will be at least several days when you won’t be able to access the toilet at all, such as when flooring is installed.

Your contractor may also be able to arrange a temporary shower and toilet in the basement. But this may not be possible in every situation and you should inquire in advance.

If you had been thinking of joining a gym or health club, this might be the time to do it to get some time away from your house. Take advantage of showers, toilets, and play areas for the children while you work out.

Keep children and pets safe

If children are in the home while the workers are there, they no doubt will be fascinated by what is going on. But a work zone is hazardous and you will need to make sure they know their boundaries and stay clear of the project. Plus, distraction and interruptions to tradesmen on the job will prolong its completion date.

All the noise and strangers in the home can be very stressful to your pet. Have a place in the home where it can be contained away from the project. Have soothing music playing or the television on to help mask noises, and make sure the pet gets exercised more than normal to expend pent-up energy.

Remodeling may involve sprays, fumes, paints, and other toxic or irritating substances that could harm your children and pets. Have your project manager alert you when this may occur and insist on proper, even excessive ventilation. While this work is going on, it’s best to get everyone out of the house for the day.

Even though there will be plastic sheeting between the work area and the rest of the home, fine dust particles will still filter out. It’s advisable to remove or cover electronic equipment, fine furniture, or other valuables.

There will be many deliveries during the project. Let your project manager know where the staging area will be; inside the garage is a good choice. Keep your driveway clear of your own vehicles to facilitate delivery and parking of construction vehicles. If your community doesn’t allow on-street parking, visit the police department to get a variance for temporary parking.

Knowing what will occur and when, and planning in advance for disruptions, will help keep your family’s routine as normal as possible under the circumstances. The key to any successful remodel is extensive communication with your contractor and project manager. Planning to the most infinite detail, selecting and making product and material purchases well in advance, and having a start and completion date as well as a production schedule, are important elements that will ensure a predictable remodeling process that provides you and your family the home you desire.

Callen’s design specialists can assist you throughout the remodeling process. Call Callen, the leading remodeling company in Brookfield, to get the process started.