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Which Kitchen Flooring Material is Best?

luxury kitchenThe timeless beauty and allure of tile flooring is perhaps the biggest reason why it’s becoming increasingly popular among homeowners. In particular, tile is widely preferred for kitchen renovations, thanks to its versatility and durability. Still, most individuals find it hard to pick the best kitchen floor tiles for their homes, which is why you might want to familiarize yourself with some of the options that are available to you.

As a tile store in Anaheim, we have compiled a list of our favorite materials for kitchen floor tiles.

Porcelain

Porcelain tiles are known to be harder, tougher, purer and stronger than their already sturdy counterparts. This is because they’re usually fired at higher temperatures, something that boosts their density. As a result, porcelain tiles are usually resistant to cracking, and need little in the form of maintenance. Considering that porcelain tiles are also capable of withstanding moisture and fire, it’s easy to see why porcelain is one of our favorite materials for kitchen floors.

Marble

Historically associated with wealth and opulence, marble is one of the most elegant materials you could choose for your kitchen. Installing marble tiles in your kitchen will create a sophisticated atmosphere that will be carried to all parts of your home. Aesthetic appeal aside, you might also want to choose marble tiles for the sake of durability and resistance to scratches. Marble tiles also have a translucent attribute, and while slight, could further enhance lighting in your kitchen, thus making the environment safer.

Travertine

Travertine is a limestone variety that occurs around mineral spring deposits. Its use as a flooring material dates back thousands of years, but it can also be used for backsplashes, countertops and other areas where tile is usually preferred.  Travertine tile has the ability to withstand extreme fluctuations in temperature, durability and excellent traction are a few of the reasons why one might consider travertine flooring for their kitchen. If properly installed and maintained, it would definitely enhance the interior decor of your home.

Ceramic

Previously known for its toughness, ceramic’s popularity has exploded in recent years, mainly due to its decorator effect. Being significantly softer than its porcelain cousin, the material is usually easier to cut and install. And while you could use ceramic tile in the majority of your home, there are a few good reasons why you’d want to choose ceramic tile for your kitchen flooring, such as; Easy maintenance: Regular sweeping and mopping is all it takes to keep ceramic tiles as good as new. Moisture resistance: This means you won’t have to worry about spills from the typical fluids in your kitchen. Resistance to odors and fire. As such, ceramic tile is a practical, functional choice for your kitchen floor.

Granite

Granite is a quartz-based stone that has emerged as the material of choice for kitchen applications. This is all thanks to its hardness, durability and ability to resist water seepage. Granite tile is also known to be resistant to allergens, which further enhances its popularity as a flooring option. Installing granite tiles in your kitchen could actually enhance the value of your home, thanks to the unique appeal created by the stone’s variegated texture and color.

Tile floors are an excellent choice for most kitchens. If you’re ready to see more kitchen floor tile design, please give us a call or simply stop by one of our tile stores in Orange County. We have locations in Costa Mesa. Anaheim, and Laguna Niguel.

The Best Materials For Kitchen Counter Tops

The most important decision that homeowners have to make when selecting the ideal countertop is the choice of material. The decision is influenced by a variety of factors, including stain resistance, durability, appearance and overall kitchen theme. Fortunately, homeowners are truly spoiled for choice. The majority of materials available on the market require some degree of maintenance to retain their appeal.

Some of the best options include marble, granite and engineered quartz. Below, we break down the pros and cons of each material to help you make an informed decision about your kitchen countertops in Orange County!

Marble

Marbles are timeless with their classic beauty and elegance. They boast a long working life. With proper care and maintenance, marble countertops can retain their appeal for decades. Some of the statues made of marble are still standing more than 100 years after they were created.

These types of countertops are available in wide-ranging colors from which to choose. They vary depending on the area the stone was extracted. The finishing enhances marble’s color and glow.

Granite

Granite has the capacity to add an ultra-stylish look to any kitchen without compromising on functionality. These materials are highly durable and can add value to the kitchen. They also provide a viable way to increase the resale value of the home. The durability of granite makes it harder to scratch or chip, which translates to a longer working life.

Granite is known to resist dirt and bacteria, which is a vital property for a kitchen countertop. The material resists bacteria due to the presence of a sealer, which eliminates porosity. As a result, fluids and moisture do not soak onto the surface. On the other hand, the sealed, smooth surface makes it easier to clean. In the unlikely event that granite scratches or chips, the damaged surface can be fixed easily.

Engineered quartz

This material is engineered using quartz to create a stone with a natural appearance. A specially designed resin binder binds the quartz crystals. The material gives kitchen countertops various key benefits that are not associated with natural stone.

Homeowners can choose from wide-ranging colors, including earth tones. The material derives its depth of color from the quartz even though colorants can be added to achieve a particular tone. Engineered quartz are not only attractive but they are also durable almost like granite.

If you have any questions about marble, granite, or engineered quartz, call our tile store in Anaheim (714) 284-0118 – Costa Mesa (714) 540-5542 – Laguna Niguel (949)-446-8121

How To Clean Marble Tile And Granite Tile

mopping marble tileGranite tile is often used for flooring because of its exceptional beauty and durability. The same holds true for marble tile which can be found in many homes. They have the ability to transform rooms into incredibly attractive spaces. However, these two materials are known to be porous and sensitive. Spills can leave unsightly stains unless they are cleaned off right away. The tiles also respond differently to some cleaning materials, so utmost care is necessary to prevent damage. We often receive questions at our tile store in Anaheim regarding how to clean marble and granite. We’ve put together this guide to help keep your tiles clean and looking brand new!

A Note on Cleaning Products

Remember that these tiles are made from natural materials. If you want to avoid chemical damage, use specially formulated granite and marble cleaners instead of generic products. You should be particularly wary of ceramic tile cleaners as these have the tendency to dull the shine of marble. Check the labels to learn more about the contents. Avoid those that have extreme acidity or alkalinity. Don’t use DIY cleaning mixes that feature vinegar and the like. Prevent scratches by steering clear of rough scouring pads and wheeled vacuum cleaners. Use soft cloth instead, and apply it gently on the surface.

Removing Dirt and Scuff Marks

If you observe any problematic spots on the floor, act quickly to get rid of the dirt, mark or spill. You should use a pH-neutral cleaning product that is designed specifically for these tiles if you want the best results. If there is none available, then you may improvise by diluting liquid dish-washing soap in water. Dip a soft microfiber cloth or a similar material into the solution and start wiping away. Try this on a small discreet spot first for testing before moving on to a larger area. Gently rub the surface in straight lines. Once you are satisfied, use dry cloth to buff it up and get it shiny again.

Periodic Cleaning Best Practices

Don’t wait until you find problems before lifting a finger. Floor cleaning should be done regularly as dirt builds up on the surface over time. Use a mop to cover the whole area within a reasonable time. As advised earlier, specialty cleaners are ideal for this purpose. The mild dish washing solution may also be used as an alternative. Dip the mop in the solution and begin to wipe the floor in short strokes. Be gentle to avoid scratches. Once you have covered the whole floor, dip the mop in a bucket of cold water and use this to remove the soap residue. Finally, get dry microfiber cloth to dry things down and make the surface shine.

Long-term Care and Maintenance

Never ignore wetness or leave it to dry naturally. The moisture will seep into the tiles and create water marks. Always use clean soft cloth to wipe liquids away. Reduce the need to clean the floor by catching dirt at the entrances with floor mats and the like. Make it a habit to take off your shoes and switch to indoor footwear after entering the house. Use floor sealants to shield the surface from common forms of damage.

How to Remodel Your Bathroom on a Budget

image of newly remodeled bathroomWe’ve heard from a lot of our customers that remodeling a bathroom is just simply cost prohibitive. But as a tile store in Anaheim, we can tell you – it doesn’t have to be! You can have a luxurious bathroom, without breaking the bank. There are ways to achieve budget renovations that will pack an equal punch to full on overhaul.

Paint

Sometimes a simple paint job is enough to completely change the appearance and vibe of a bathroom. While this certainly isn’t going to be enough to give your bathroom a whole new look, it is the first step.

Since the bathroom is naturally a wet environment due to showering, flushing, and hand washing; it’s wise to invest in water withstanding and mold/mildew resistant paint.  Just be careful to paint around windows, toilets, mirrors, vanities, storage space, pedestal sinks, shower/tub combos, the floor, and ceiling fixtures.

Fixtures and Hardware

Light fixtures, sink faucets, bath faucets, shower heads, towel racks, toilet tissue holders, and shower curtain rods are all relatively inexpensive items that when replaced can give your bathroom a facelift. Although it may not seem like changing these fixtures will have a major impact on your bathroom’s appearance, but we can tell you first hand that after you make the switch, these subtle changes will amount to big differences.

If your budget is especially tight – you can find used fixtures online, as well as at thrift stores, or sometimes you can get by with a can of metallic spray paint!

Mirror Makeover

You would be shocked at how different a bathroom can look when you switch out the mirror. It’s a focal point in the bathroom, so choose one of two selections: get a completely new mirror, or find a suitable frame for the old one.  You can find used mirrors from secondhand stores, yard sales, flea markets, and consignment shops. Additionally, you can find an inexpensive frame for your mirror, and paint it in a complementary color to your new walls.

Freshen Up Accessories

Now that you’ve given your mirror a makeover, you can complete your bathroom remodel with a complete accessory overhaul. You’ll be surprised at how much of a difference it can make to buy or repurpose new accessories to give your bathroom a new feel. The simplest of items like shower curtains, rugs, artwork, and bath accessory sets can give your bathroom the fresh aesthetic that you’re looking for.

Social Media For Inspiration

If you’re looking for a bathroom upgrade on a budget, you are definitely not alone. We talk to a lot of folks at our Anaheim tile store who are hunting for bargains.

We have consistently heard that Pinterest is the absolute best source for getting ideas, inspiration and instructions on how to execute a bathroom remodel without emptying your bank account.  Pinterest is a social network that enables users to browse and share text, images, and videos with similar themes.

Pinterest has a seemingly endless supply of do-it-yourself bathroom remodel ideas, projects, and step-by-step instructions.

7 Ways To Save On Your Kitchen Remodel

newly remodeled kitchenKitchen remodeling projects can be a long and expensive process, but it doesn’t have to be. By planning ahead and finding ways to cut costs, you can make your next kitchen remodel amazing without breaking the bank.

Start With a Plan

Planning ahead will save you money and time when planning to remodel your kitchen. If you consider all of the elements at once—cabinet refacing, countertop replacement, flooring and appliances, for example—you can often save on the price of materials and labor.

Consider Refacing Instead of Replacing

Ripping out all of your old cabinets and installing new ones can be costly. You can get the same effect by simply refacing your existing ones. When you reface your cabinets, you change all of the doors and handles, giving your kitchen an instant facelift.

Make Your Tile Make a Statement

While new appliances and cabinets make a difference, what really catches the eye is an amazing backsplash. By spending a little more to get the most dramatic tile for your kitchen, you can cut corners in other areas, playing up the tile while downplaying everything else. A backsplash that covers the length of your kitchen countertop is going to catch the eye. We recommend visiting our tile store in Anaheim to pick up materials like marble, granite, or engineered quartz will make sure that your kitchen really stands out.

Light it Up

Installing dramatic lighting is one of the least expensive ways to give your kitchen a facelift without huge expense. Under cabinet lighting, recessed ceiling lights and spotlights make your kitchen look more expensive than it really is. Be sure to highlight the most dramatic areas of the kitchen—like range hoods, countertops, flooring and cabinets while leaving more plain elements in the shadows. Lighting can also make your kitchen look larger, so plan carefully.

Scratch and Dent Won’t Make a Dent in Your Budget

If there is a local appliance retailer that sells “scratch and dent” appliances, look there first for deals. You may be able to score that Viking stainless steel stove for less, or save on a refrigerator with french doors and ice makers. You can often find perfectly beautiful appliances for as much as 80 percent less than retail.

Pay Attention to Detail

You can often do a lot with a little by adding small details that draw attention. Add stone to the side of your kitchen island or invest in interesting barstools. Feature amazing artwork or a conversation piece to make your kitchen remodel look like it cost a fortune.

Make the Floors Come Alive

Instead of replacing your kitchen flooring, consider refinishing it or repairing broken pieces. You can also find inexpensive floor tiles that will make your kitchen really stand out. Find larger tiles that allow you to cover a larger area with less material. The floor is often the first thing people will notice about your kitchen, so make sure the tile is up to date and your floors are clean and shining.

Undergoing a kitchen remodel doesn’t have to break the bank. By focusing on the most important elements and saving on the others, you can have a beautiful kitchen that gets people talking.

 

6 Essential Tips for Hiring a Contractor

newly remodeled bathroom with construction worker insideKitchen and bathroom remodeling can be a frustrating process if you’re not working with the right professionals – and the right materials. As a tile store in Anaheim, we’ve heard from a number of our clients who have had poor experiences with the professionals they hired to carry out their job, so we’ve put together our list of tips for selecting the right contractor!

Referrals

Word of mouth is generally the best way to find a contractor that you can trust with your remodeling project. If you don’t have any friends, family, or coworkers that can help you out with a referral, you can certainly reach out to your tile vendor for a recommendation on a contractor they’ve worked with in the past.

Meetings and Interviews

We advise our customers to conduct phone interviews with their prospective contractor before they schedule a face-to-face interview. There are a few questions you’ll want answered before you make the time commitment of inviting a professional into your home. For instance:

  • Do you take projects of this size/budget?
  • Are you licenses and insured?
  • Can you provide references?
  • What subcontractors do you work with?

Pay Attention to Price

It can be tempting to jump at the lowest price – but we always recommend that you proceed with caution. A substantially lower price than competitors can potentially mean trouble for your project. It’s possible that this contractor is cutting corners, desperate to get a gig, or intentionally underbidding so that they can jack up the price due to “unforeseen costs” in the middle of the project.

Research

Once you’ve received a referral, or found a contractor you would like to vet, the next step is to research their business online. Websites like Yelp, Angie’s List, Houzz and Home Advisor are a few of the most trusted review sites in the business. The information you find on these sites will be invaluable in your search for a reputable contractor in Orange County.

Now you have to imagine yourself as a judge in a beauty contest. At this point, it would be wise to narrow down your choices to three possible candidates for your bathroom or kitchen remodel mission.

Deals on Materials

Different contractors will have different relationships with tile stores in Anaheim. Depending on the volume of business the contractor is working with, this can lead to significant discounts on materials like marble, granite and quartz. If your project will include new kitchen countertops or bathroom flooring, you’ll want to make sure that your contractor can get you a good deal on the material.

Get It In Writing

We saved the most important tip for last. It’s crucial that you detail every aspect of your remodeling project in writing. We know that this process might be slightly uncomfortable for some homeowners, but it is absolutely necessary. We recommend having the following action items in your contract:

  • Start date and estimated completion date
  • Materials to be used
  • Proof of insurance

A well written contract will ensure your peace of mind, and will make the entire remodeling process much smoother.

5 Crucial Tips for Remodeling your Bathroom

Newly Remodeled BathroomWhen it comes to home remodels, bathrooms can be especially tricky projects to tackle. To help you create the bathroom of your dreams without (much) trouble, we’ve put together a quick list of 5 crucial mistakes to avoid.

#1: Hiring the wrong kind of Help

Remodeling bathrooms is considered a specialty in the world of construction, and for good reason. A typical bathroom overhaul has dozens of components that must be installed perfectly to ensure a quality finished product. Using a tradesman who builds decks or installs windows will likely not provide the end result you’re hoping for.

We recommend researching companies that specialize in building bathrooms. These installers are trained to anticipate and resolve any potential challenges quickly and without unnecessary expense.

#2: Hiring a contractor without a fixed-price contract

Failing to set a fixed-price contract with the professionals you hire will almost always land you in a bottomless money pit. With each contractor, it is absolutely essential to put into writing a detailed contract that outlines an itemized list and cost breakdown of materials and tasks to be performed.

Without a contract, when changes are made to a project or unexpected issues pop up, a contractor can slam you with high fees for a new job that must be completed before the project can continue. Prices for porcelain tiles and other materials can also change unexpectedly, so a contract can help keep your budget intact.

#3: Putting aesthetics ahead of usability

It’s so easy to get carried away with creating your dream bathroom that you forget to approach things from a practical point of view. However, in any remodel, functionality should always be the main goal. It won’t matter how gorgeous your new marble tiles look if the bathroom counters have a poor layout and the wasted space interferes with your daily routine. Make sure that in planning your design, you remember to consider safety, accessibility, and comfort above everything else.

#4: Cutting corners on sealant

If you choose natural stone, ceramic, or porcelain tiles for your new bathroom flooring, the grout lines must be sealed. Unsealed grout quickly becomes dirty and acts as an ideal breeding ground for mold. Although most improvement stores carry a basic sealant, buying the cheapest version will spell trouble later on.

Our tile store in Anaheim carries the highest quality sealants available, which in many cases are guaranteed for twenty years or more. These new formulas are designed to penetrate and fill grout so that no moisture can enter the space, and come in aerosol cans that can be applied better than using a traditional jug of liquid sealant and sponge.

#5: Choosing the wrong materials

The most important thing to remember when shopping for bathroom remodel materials is that they should be highly durable and water resistant. Although you may love the look of wood or wallpaper now, over time moisture can cause major problems that require costly repairs or replacement. Choose water resistant porcelain or granite tiles, and make sure to install a strong exhaust fan to help get rid of excess moisture.

If you’re ready to learn more about how Trendy Surfaces can help make your dream bathroom a reality, please contact our tile store in Anaheim, Costa Mesa, or Laguna Niguel to set an appointment today.

5 Mistakes to Avoid When Remodeling Your Kitchen

kitchen remodelA kitchen remodel project is a huge undertaking, and requires extensive planning and attention to detail. Unfortunately, over the years we’ve heard hundreds of horror stories from our customers about issues they’ve encountered. To help shed some light on the subject, we’ve compiled a short list of some common mistakes people make when remodeling kitchens and how to avoid them.

  1. Being Penny Smart and Dollar Foolish. Kitchen counter tops are something you’ll look at every single day, and if they turn out crooked with a huge seam down the middle it’ll be impossible to ignore. We can’t stress enough how important it is to invest in the best quality materials and workmanship you can afford. Sub-par work will have to be redone sooner, and wastes more of your time and money than paying more upfront the first time. That being said, it’s not usually advisable to pay for the entire project before completion, just in case of unforeseen circumstances.
  2. Not identifying your needs and wants beforehand: Whether you have a zoo of kids and dogs running around, or you’re a neat freak that expects things to be just so, make sure to make decisions based on your real day to day life. Whether you’re looking for durable marble tiles for your kitchen floor or decorative quartz tiles for your backsplash, our tile store in Anaheim has a vast selection of exceptional materials to fit every lifestyle and budget.
  3. Ignoring expert advice: Architects, designers, contractors and even other remodelers all have years of knowledge and practical experience that you should be willing to listen to and apply. The more you can learn from these experts early on, the better- so ask questions! Even if it’s as simple as worrying that the granite tiles you picked out won’t fit your home’s aesthetic, your project manager can help reassure you or steer you in a better direction. In the world of home remodels, there’s absolutely no such thing as a silly question.
  4. Not trusting your instincts: It’s always better to go with your gut when making decisions to avoid buyer’s remorse six months down the road. Besides the obvious advice of playing with some samples to decide which porcelain tiles would look the best, don’t forget to do your homework on your contractor and other providers. Remember that high quality companies won’t pressure you to sign a contract since their body of work speaks for itself. If you feel that your contractor is untrustworthy or they have less than optimal reviews, revisit point #1 and take the time to find someone that has the qualifications and experience you’re looking for.
  5. Expecting things to run perfectly: Murphy’s Law always seems to kick in when you least expect it, and the same is true for kitchen remodels. Be okay with the fact that problems will most likely come up, and remember that you’ll drive yourself crazy worrying about every little issue. Trust your contractor to keep you in the loop and handle any problem appropriately, and things will be so much less stressful.

Trendy Surfaces has tile stores in Anaheim, Costa Mesa and Laguna Niguel.

Call our showroom for more information. (714) 284-0118

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