Fall Home Maintenance Tasks

deck cleaningIn the coastal NC region, fall means the beach crowds are thinning out, the night air has a little crisp to it, and the days are getting shorter and a lot less humid! Yes, fall is a great time of year for our little corner of NC and it’s also a great time to give your home an autumn checkup. We understand that taking good care of a home is a year-round job, but there are certain projects and small tasks that every property owner should do in the fall to prepare for the winter ahead. To help you get started, we’ve compiled a short list of fall home maintenance tasks we recommend.

1. Clean those gutters!

Gutters and downspouts can get clogged and cruddy pretty quick around here. With the abundance of pine trees, oak leaves, and birds looking for a place to nest, homeowners in the Wilmington area should take special care to ensure their gutters are cleared of debris. We know most people don’t enjoy cleaning out gutters, but this simple home maintenance task doesn’t take a whole lot of effort and can save you from bigger, more expensive repair costs in the future. If the thought of cleaning gutters makes you cringe, or if you simply don’t have the time, Colour Solutions can help! We offer gutter cleaning as one of our many home maintenance services[Read more…]

Popular Cabinetry Trends

glass front cabinetsYour home’s cabinets don’t have to be dull. Then again, they don’t have to be so attention-grabbing that they overpower the room. Finding that happy medium while showing off your personal style is what it’s all about. Not sure which style is “yours?” Take a look at some of the latest cabinetry design trends and see if one (or a combination of several) speaks to the home designer in you!

Light, Bright & Simple

Smooth, solid surfaces, white paint and simple fixtures are all the rage right now. If you like a look that is classic yet modern, this is the style for you. Also, if your room is small, choosing a white or off-white paint color will make the space look bigger and brighter.

Long & Tall

Another way to maximize space in compact kitchen is to install cabinets that are taller, reaching up to the ceiling. Not only will this provide more storage space, it helps create the illusion of higher ceilings and a bigger room.

Au Natural

Not everyone is a big fan of the natural look of wood, but it’s definitely making a comeback these days. If you go this route, choose a stain that brings out the natural grain patterns. And if you’re new to cabinet staining, don’t hesitate to contact a pro.

Elegant & Embellished

Another big trend we’re seeing nowadays is implementing furniture-like accents to cabinetry. Adding a matching moulding to the tops of cabinets is a great way to complement a kitchen or bathroom that has crown moulding already in place. Adding other embellishments such as undercounter corbels, decorative feet, columns or rosettes will give your cabinetry a distinct look.

Glass-Front

Got a collection of dishes, linens, knick-knacks or books that you really hate to hide behind a closed cabinet? Glass-front cabinetry is the answer. This design style allows you to proudly display your items while still keeping them protected. The see-through feature also helps the room appear less “closed-off,” and may even make your space look larger.

For more ideas on giving your room a cabinet makeover, talk to the pros at Colour Solutions – a team of friendly, experienced home improvement experts serving Wilmington, NC and the surrounding area. Just call (910) 686-3067 for a free consultation.

Simple Solutions to Give an Old Home a New Look

“An almost new look to an almost 30 year old house; repair work and painting was exceptional. All workers had great work skills.” – Peggy Needham

This testimonial from Peggy perfectly explains what a few simple tasks can do to transform an old home. With just minor repairs and a few fresh coats of paint, a home that’s decades old can have a totally updated look. We did it for Peggy’s house and we can do it for yours, too!

yellow houseInterior & Exterior Painting

You might be thinking that your home is so outdated that a few simple projects just won’t make a difference. You’d be surprised at the impact just a fresh coat of paint can make. Our experienced and professional team of residential painters can work with you to find a color that will complement your home’s features and we’re always ready to discuss your budget ahead of time so there won’t be any unpleasant surprises when you get your bill. We specialize in both interior and exterior home painting, so when you work with Colour Solutions you know you’re working with professionals.

Want to see some of our work? Check out our online gallery here.

Faux Finishes

In addition to painting, Colour Solutions is proud to offer faux finishing services to give your home a truly customized look. There are a wide variety of finishes to choose from, each with distinct textures and colors. Many clients choose faux finishes because they feel it allows them to make their home’s interior “stand out” and it gives them the chance to really personalize their favorite rooms.

Minor Repairs

Does your drywall have a few dings? Could the carpentry on your deck railing use some TLC? Colour Solutions can help boost your home’s interior or exterior look by completing simple repairs, as well as performing routine home maintenance tasks like cleaning out the gutters.

Ugly wallpaper? Call us!

Although wallpaper seems to be making a bit of a comeback these days, there are a lot of homeowners who feel stuck with the dates designs of decades past. But if the thought of removing wallpaper on your own gives you an instant headache, call Colour Solutions! We can remove your wallpaper in a professional, safe and efficient manner – and, of course, we can happily provide ideas for paint or finishes to take its place.
As you can see, you don’t need to spend thousands of dollars on a remodeling project to give your home a makeover. These simple and budget-friendly ideas can breathe new life into your home while adding to its market value. Homeowners who are getting ready to sell can especially benefit from these basic projects, as they can improve resale value, boost curb appeal, and hopefully help your home sell faster!

Call Colour Solutions today at 910-686-3067 for more information or to schedule a consultation. We can’t wait to hear from you!

Home Maintenance You Probably Overlooked

The Back Garden

Summer is here! Don’t neglect those outbuildings and garden structures.

Did you ever stop to think that a property is judged by all of the structures on the premises? Even though the house and its landscaping may be HGTV worthy, the smaller outbuildings and garden structures should never be ignored.

Otherwise, run down, broken or dirty gazebos, benches, pergolas, fences, garden sheds and outdoor showers can cast big ugly shadows on a home’s reputation. The same goes for fences and pool surroundings.

Fortunately, when you contact Colour Solutions, you’ll reach the one-stop-shopping solution for such matters! Not only are we an experienced team of professional painters and stainers, we  also pressure wash and make small repairs.

We have discovered that some homeowners choose to ignore their outbuildings, such as pump houses and garden sheds. The school of thought is something like, “They’re doing their job, no need to draw attention to them.” Guess what? A good cleaning and a fresh coat of paint can transform these minor little buildings into a focal point! Not to mention, a bit of maintenance will extend the life of just about anything.

 

Need a little inspiration?

Give us a call at 910-686-3067, or check out these ideas:

Gazebos

Garden Sheds

Outdoor Showers

Tips for Maintaining Your Stained Deck

deck cleaningDid you know that a deck is considered a valuable investment for your home? According to Remodeling magazine, a deck can offer a return on investment of roughly 87 percent of the original cost. And like any investment, it pays to protect it.

Having your outdoor wood deck stained not only increases its aesthetic value, it helps protect it from the elements and prevent damage. However, a coat of stain isn’t the only thing you need to keep your deck in great shape. Regular maintenance and cleaning are essential to extending the life of your deck.

Here are a few tips for making sure you get the most out of your stained deck.

1. Keep it clean!

A deck that doesn’t get a good wash now and then can be subject to mildew, mold, and even rot. Your deck’s stain can do a lot of good by preventing much of these issues, but without yearly cleaning, debris can build up and wear the stain down, eventually causing unattractive spots and worse yet, costly wood rot. You can remove debris between deck boards by using a long comb or putty knife. Attach one of these items to the end of a long pole, PVC pipe or broom handle to go easy on your knees and back.

After you clear out the debris, make sure you give your deck a thorough sweeping. Finally, choose a cleaning solution that is appropriate for your deck’s material. It’s also a good idea to clean the deck on a mild weather day. Extreme heat can cause the cleaning material to evaporate more quickly. Last, but not least, rinse the deck thoroughly by running a hose across the deck several times.

You can also schedule a pressure washing service to come out and remove any mildew that may have built up over time. Professional pressure washers will know the right solution and pressure levels to use to get your deck clean without damaging the stain.

2. Perform a deck check-up.

In addition to keeping your deck looking great, it’s important to give it a once-over from time to time to make sure the structure is still holding up. Grab a flashlight and look underneath the deck to inspect the ledger. The ledger is the part that connects the deck to the home. A weak or damaged ledger can cause the deck to collapse. The ledger should be attached with lag screws, not just exterior nails. Also make sure the flashing (the material that covers the top of the ledger) is free from rust, holes or other signs of wear and tear. While you’re under there, you might as well check the rest of the hardware and ensure everything is attached properly and no screws/nails are rusted or missing.

After inspecting the deck underneath, check the railings and steps to make sure there aren’t any loose boards or missing hardware. Don’t be afraid to give the railings a good shake to test them. Also look for cracks that may have developed around the fasteners over time. If you find any, you can seal the crack with an exterior-grade adhesive after removing the fastener. To add a new fastener, drill a new pilot hole and add a new galvanized deck screw.

Check for signs of rot by gently probing areas with a flat head screwdriver. If you’re able to push the screwdriver more than a quarter of an inch into the wood, you likely have rot in that area.

3.  Call a professional.

It never hurts to have your deck professionally inspected once every couple of years. And if any of the tasks above sound too complicated or time consuming, hiring a pro can be a great way to save you from the headaches of doing everything yourself. At Colour Solutions, we offer a wide variety of home improvement services, including deck staining and refinishing as well as some light carpentry. Call 910-686-3067 today to set up a consultation.

Time to Seal the Deck!

Pressure Washing & Low Pressure Washing

Your deck just called and said, “What are they waiting for? Summer and prime deck season are practically here!”

There’s no question that sealing a deck falls under the category of “big jobs.” That’s why you should leave it to the experts at Colour Solutions.

We have learned that in order to ensure the best protection for your deck, annual maintenance is key.

Here in southeastern NC, decks can take a beating from all that heavy rain, frozen precipitation and brutal ultraviolet rays. Unless the decking timbers are sealed each year, rapid deterioration is a danger.

If you’ve been told that a good way to judge if  your deck is due for a sealant is to see if water droplets bead up, sorry not true! Although some products contain paraffin wax,  which does lend to beading, others such as oil-based sealers do not. The best policy is to just take care of this task annually, either each spring or at least by early summer.

A bonus that comes when you use our team to seal your deck is that we’re also professional pressure washers! (say that 3 times fast) We use low-pressure  powerwashers that  will not damage the wood surface of the decking timbers.

New Deck

If you’ve just built a home that has a nice new deck, we suggest having it professionally sealed four weeks or more post construction. To speed up the aging process which is sometimes necessary for new wood, we would likely pressure wash your deck to remove any glazes or treatments that were applied at the mill.

Along with sealing, of course we can handle any type of accompanying paint or stain job. Many coastal homeowners love the look of white painted trim and natural, but sealed, decking. Another popular look for decks today involves using stain on the railings and a sealer on the floor. The stain is usually tinted to match the trim of your house.

We’d love to work with you and get your deck in the best shape possible!

Please give Colour Solutions a call to learn more about our services: 910-686-3067

Summer is the Time for Exterior Home Maintenance

Deck Painting Wilmington NC

Our customers frequently ask us what time of year is the best for tackling certain exterior jobs such as painting, pressure washing, staining or sealing outdoor flooring and making general small repairs.

Although here in southeastern N.C. we experience some of the best weather in the country, we think that late spring/early summer is just about ideal for addressing your home’s exterior maintenance needs.

If you are considering a fresh coat of paint for your home’s siding and trim, giving it a good pressure washing beforehand serves several purposes. It will thoroughly clean all  of the surfaces, trim, steps, walkways, and  easily remove any flaking paint or stain.

Prep

Take it from us, prepping for an exterior paint job with pressure washing is quick, easy and mess-free! We have even had customers discover that their home was not due for a paint job at all; it just needed a good cleansing blast from the Colour Solutions team!

Paint

As for painting, the good news is that the pollen is gone and the temps are seasonably mild, yet sunny. Which means quicker drying times, plus the days are longer so there’s more time to complete the task. The same applies to staining and sealing wood decking and porch flooring.

Another pro is that the kids won’t be out of school for a few more weeks, so no little footprints should hamper the progress! Then, when those long, lazy summer days finally roll around, your place will be ready for full-on family enjoyment!

Spruce

Sprucing up your home’s exterior provides immediate gratification. However, please don’t neglect other “to-dos.” There are plenty of spots that fall into the “out of sight, out of mind” category. However, though they are not exactly exterior areas,  the attic, crawl space and basement needs your attention too.

No summer home maintenance check-list would be complete without this entry:

Check for Leaks and Rot

After the much more frigid and wetter than usual winter we had, it is imperative to check all the areas of your home for any signs of moisture, mold, mildew or rot. If that is out of your area of expertise, just give us a call. We have heard stories from more than one customer about the damage caused by burst pipes.

The unfortunate twist is that homeowners were often unaware there was a problem at all. Please remember that in addition to our usual services, we also do small repair jobs and are experienced in diagnosing issues before they get out of control.

Drier summer weather allows areas that are prone to moisture retention to dry out a bit. Thankfully, that makes it much easier to fix any problems that may have arisen. Replacing wood, fiberglass or insulation that shows signs of excessive dampness is the best way to remove mildew and dangerous mold from getting a foothold.

When you have the piece of mind that your home is impeccably maintained (maybe with a little help from Colour Solutions) it will be a snap to take in every available bit of summer fun: beach days, bike rides, boat trips, barbeques…
Please call 910-686-3067 to find out what we can do for you.

Rethink Color!

Paint Color SelectionEveryone knows that changing your home’s interior paint colors is the easiest and most cost-effective way to update and upgrade. Over the last few years, neutral choices have become the trend. Muted shades of earth tones such as grays, beiges, and creams, along with calm blues and soft greens are very popular in southeastern N.C. homes. However, after a few years of living with a neutral color scheme, some homeowners may be ready for a little more….well, color!

Interestingly enough this year’s “Color of the Year” chosen by the Pantone Corporation is Radiant Orchid. If you’ve ever stopped to think where paint color choices originate, the Pantone Corporation gets the credit for its matching system. It was developed by a chemist, Lawrence Herbert, in the 1960’s. For over 40 years, the Pantone Color Matching System has been used in the creation of fabrics, paints, and plastics. Knowing that, it is no surprise that the color analysts at Pantone are highly regarded for their trend setting predictions.

Radiant Orchid-2014’s Color of the Year, is described as, “An enchanting harmony of fuchsia, purple and pink undertones, Radiant Orchid inspires confidence and emanates great joy, love and health. It is a captivating purple, one that draws you in with its beguiling charm.”

See it here.

Now if this choice sounds a bit extreme for your walls, remember that painting doors, window frames, trim, ceilings, bookshelf walls, mantles, stairways and banisters, are several excellent ways to introduce some fresh color into your home.

Although painting is an easy and economical choice, the tough part is choosing colors we can live with. If you are hesitant to make a decision and worried that your paint choice will lack staying power, please schedule an appointment with one of our paint experts. Just call 910-686-3067 to choose a time that works best for you!

Related Posts:

Beach House Paint Colors
Classic Paint Colors Ideal for Wilmington NC
Color Therapy

Put Pressure Washing on Your Springtime “To-Do” List

Pressure WashingThere are plenty of seasoned homeowners out there who have their homes pressure washed on an annual basis. They have recognized the amazing results this quick and cost-effective procedure delivers. In addition to cleaning up a home’s exterior, pressure washing can make decks, porches, patios, walkways, and driveways look like new!

Many homeowners put off having their residences professionally pressure washed because they are afraid that doing so will cause the paint to pop off here and there. They worry that in turn; they may have to paint the entire place. In fact, we have had customers who contracted us for pressure washing in anticipation that afterwards, their home would be in need of an exterior paint job. Imagine their delight when after the Colour Solutions team washed away a year’s worth of dirt and mildew, the existing paint looked great!

Another reason we are such fans of pressure washing is that it is handy for a number of applications. Did you know that a variety of things can be transformed with a little pressure washing? It could be that your entire exterior is ok, but other areas around your home could benefit from the expertise of our pressure washing crew. Consider these smaller jobs that may be on your “to-do” list already:

  • Fences and gates – Exposed to the elements, they take a beating and are not the easiest things to clean, until you call Colour Solutions’ pressure washing team!
  • Porch ceiling s- These tend to gather cobwebs, mildew, and dust. Who wants to look at that all spring and summer?
  • Patio/deck furniture – Oh yes we can and what a difference you’ll see!
  • Front steps/stoops/deck steps – Because steps and stoops are also exposed directly to the elements, they can get filthy in a hurry. Excessive moisture can contribute to the growth of mildew and sometimes moss, which are very slippery and dangerous when wet. Why not let us blast it away?
  • Foundations – When the foundation is not looking its best, it casts a dreary shadow on the entire home. Pressure washing is the perfect solution for every type of foundation out there, including, brick, stone, wood, and stucco.
  • Garage floors – What a difference pressure washing can make in one of the home’s heaviest/dirtiest traffic areas (See: Tired of your Garage Floors? Colour Solutions Can Help!)

We like to think that no job is too big or too small. As part of your spring cleaning, please give your home the critical eye and decide if a visit from the Colour Solutions pressure washing crew is in order! Just give us a call for a free estimate: 910-686-3067!

It’s Time to Wash Winter Grime Away!

Spring Cleaning ServicesSpring is here at last! We certainly had more than our usual share of frozen precipitation, high winds, and bone-chilling temps during this past winter. Did you know that aside from hurricane season, winter weather is likely the hardest on a home’s exterior?  Here are just some of the reasons why this is the case:

  • Excessive moisture may cause mold, mildew, and rot.
  • A home’s siding, trim, and foundation can suffer from too much moisture.
  • The freeze/thaw cycle causes expansion and contraction of numerous building components and an increased amount of wear and tear.
  • Wind gusts of 20mph + (we had plenty of those!) wreak havoc on the roof and fill gutters with debris at an accelerated rate.

If the north wind and Jack Frost left you with a mess, the Colour Solutions team is at your service. In addition to professional painting services, our talented crew handles a variety of other jobs. Here are a few “spring cleaning” tasks that we are happy to take care of:

  • Gutter cleaning – Are your gutters full of leaves, pine cones, and small sticks? They cannot possibly be effective until they are thoroughly cleaned out.
  • Small carpentry jobs – Do you have warped planks on the deck, loose trim, or missing pieces of siding? Perhaps you have discovered a little wood rot or moisture damage? The time to address such issues is now before they lead to bigger headaches.
  • Fence cleaning and painting  -Is your once lovely fence stained or showing signs of mildew? We can restore it back to fresh and new!
  • Pressure washing – Whether your home is dingy from months of yucky weather or it’s time for an exterior paint job, nothing does the trick like pressure washing!
  • See Our Services.

Of course you had rather be spending these gorgeous spring days in the garden, at the park, at the beach, or on the golf course. Guess what? There’s plenty of time for doing the things you enjoy most when you allow Colour Solutions to handle the big jobs!

We are a quick phone call away: 910-686-3067