Kitchen updates

The tiling in the room looks very institutional especially where it is tiled around the tiny window without any window casing. Why is the backsplash tile so thick that they had to use those heavy edge tiles? The grout lines are so heavy and pronounced. The layout is not bad, and not worth changing but getting rid of the bad tile job would go a long way to improving the room.
While I see a lot of that type of tile countertops on TV in old and new houses, in this area they are not considered to be "in", in fact would devaluate a house. Either solid granite, a sythetic such as Corian, or at the cheapest, colourcore laminate would look better (in order of preference).
Subject: How to upgrade fairly new kitchen? Date: November 21, 2005 12:46 AM
I have a fairly new tract house that I'd upgrade the kitchen on and I need tips on the best things to do so it looks less generic cookie-cutter and helps resale down the road.
Check out the current pics.
http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d163/rexpix/Kitchen/f85668f3.jpg
http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d163/rexpix/Kitchen/e819233c.jpg
http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d163/rexpix/Kitchen/e8c359f5.jpg
http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d163/rexpix/Kitchen/eae6076e.jpg
http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d163/rexpix/Kitchen/62722d7a.jpg
http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d163/rexpix/Kitchen/d694ee5d.jpg
I'd like to upgrade the counters. They are tile, but not a high grade of tile. Don't know if it's worth tearing out the tile counters and replacing them with granite slab or granite tiles. Maybe just replacing the plain tile backsplashes with something more interesting? I definitely want to replace the existing sink and faucet with better quality replacements and replace the vinyl floor with either hardwood or tile to match the rest of the house. Can the current sink be removed without major damage to the counters?
http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d163/rexpix/Kitchen/62722d7a.jpg Is there anything that can be done with the cabinets to give a more upscale look other than tearing them out and replacing them? Restaining or painting or adding door handles? I'm replacing the dishwasher because I don't like the performance. Stainless steel seems to be the current fad, but then I'd need to get a new range, microwave hood and refrigerator to match and the current appliances are still pretty new.
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Sorry, this should have been a reply to another post.

replacing
upscale
painting
new
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I don't think the tile all *that* bad, but, OK, I agree it's not great.
Now, if I wanted to inexpensively update the kitchen for my own use for a couple of years then resale, I would consider a decent laminate (they do stand up, they're on the same expense level as the vinyl tile floor) as I think it would look nice and be very functional. Curious - what would be done them about the backsplash? Repair the wall, paint, and install something just by the stove?
Banty
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I plan to replace the tile in the entry with a better grade of tile (maybe stone) and extend it so it connects to the kitchen and then replace the linoleum in the kitchen with the same tile.
http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d163/rexpix/Kitchen/0b53a653.jpg
http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d163/rexpix/Kitchen/81f9021d.jpg
If I replace the tile counters with granite slab, I would probably replace the all the existing tile backsplashes with smaller glass or stone tile backsplashes in the same areas.
Here a granite similar to what one of the choices I'm considering
http://www.garywfuller.net/gallery_3/gallery_3-Images/1.jpg . Would a lighter granite be better with the white appliances?
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If you plan to do that amount of work, you might as well fix up the kitchen the way you like.

Nice.
I'd say that would go better with SS or black appliances (I went with black for my kitchen remod). Nice.
If you keep the white appliances (but now I think you're talking about the kitchen you really want - so change them and go with SS or black if you like...) I'd go with something like this (which a diner local to me has, looks sharp): http://barefootcounter.com/Granite/1655/index.html
But that's just me.. some lady on Usenet who happens to be redoing her kitchen too.
Cheers, Banty
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Rex says...>>

I'm not dead set on having that color granite, it's just one of several choices available. I'll more likely keep looking for a better granite color to coordinate with the existing white appliances and oak cabinets than replace all the appliances just so they go with the new granite. I might replace the tile master bath vanity top with granite slab and get two undermount sinks because there are giant lips on the existing top mounted sinks making it annoying to wipe anything into the sink. I assume it will be much cheaper to do the vanity top at the same time the kitchen counters are done. On the other hand, then it might not match the beige tiled shower and it is getting into to much money to replace the shower enclosure too. Maybe I should replace the tile vanitytop with either marble or Corian with built-in sinks?
I'll want to do a mini remodel of the entire place. Replacing the builder-installed carpeting and linoleum with new tile and carpeting and repainting walls. The place now has all off-white walls and "Light Medium Neutral with Dark Speckles" colored carpeting. After this replacement, the carpeting might not be replaced again before selling, so I will likely stay with something that will be appealing to a wide variety of tastes. What I see people doing with paints is having earthtone walls with lighter-colored ceilings and white baseboards, white doors, white window and door surrounds and white crown moldings as accents. I will probably also have a more interesting color painted accent wall in the master bedroom and the living room and then repaint those two walls again to match the rest of the place at resale time. Since the entire place is 2 b/2ba and only about 1000 sq feet with small rooms, I might as well get nice quality stuff since the quantities of materials I'll need to buy will not be large. Labor will be the same regardless, so the total differences in cost between cheap quality and better quality carpets, paints and tiles should not be huge. I'll go look at some model homes for ideas and maybe get a designer consultant to help pick out the best combinations of colors.
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"Rex"> wrote

I've seen this product installed recently www.zodiaq.com and it looks stunning, may use it in my next home (presently in the design stages). If you scratch granite it is difficult to impossible to repair, it can also be chipped or broken with a cast iron skillet. Solid surface can be repaired rather easily, scratches, burns, melts, dents, etc. I have Staron www.staron.com in my present home and like it. The thing is, none of the manufacturers of these products, granite, solid surface, whatever, will tell you the problems with their products. I on the otherhand, design homes for a living and have spoken to hundreds of clients over the years about their counters and the overwhelming majority favor a form of solid surface. The exception to this is the very expensive homes where costs and maintenance aren't an issue, the owners just get the stuff fixed no matter the costs.
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Laminate is not a good idea in wet areas, ie., kitchens and bathrooms.
as I think it would

When you remove tile from drywall quite a bit of damage occurs to the surface. A lot of finish mud, and sanding, will be required to make it look right.
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