Hudson Remodeling News

You might be wondering… Three tips for a successful home remodeling project

Posted 27 September 2018 by Team Hudson

A home remodel is probably something you’ll do only once in your life. Nobody expects you to be an expert at it.

After all, that’s why you’re considering hiring a professional to do the work, right?

If this is your first time through the home remodeling process, there probably are a thousand questions swirling around in your mind about how the construction and renovation process will go.

Based on Hudson Remodeling’s prodigious experience in Bellingham and throughout Whatcom County, here some tried-and-true answers to a few important home remodeling questions.

When is the best time to conduct a Bellingham home remodeling project?

The best time of year to remodel your home depends a lot on the type of work being done. Any time of year works well for indoor remodeling and upgrade projects, but there are certain tasks that can’t be completed during the rainy season. Roof replacements and exterior painting jobs, for example, are best done under the sun. Most other projects — bathroom remodels, kitchen upgrades, deck installations and more — are great to complete all year long.

Hudson Remodeling is booking projects now for the spring, so if you have an exterior project, now’s the time to get on the list for the spring/summer dry period.

Can I live at home during the remodeling project?

Whether your family should continue to live in your home while it’s being renovated honestly depends on the extent of the work. If the area to be remodeled can be isolated from the rest of the home, such as a basement renovation with exterior access, then it’s OK for homeowners to remain in the house.

However, for safety reasons, contractors would prefer that people don’t walk through an active job site. If we’re talking about a whole-house remodel, it’s much better for the homeowners to move out, if at all possible, as it’s much more efficient for the contractor to have access to all rooms at once. With unfettered access to the home, the plumbers, electricians, sheetrockers, painters and carpenters can limit the number of times they need to access the home. That will help the project get done much faster, which of course means that the homeowner can enjoy the work that much sooner.

How much should I communicate with the remodeler or contractor?

Good communication is a major key to a successful home remodeling partnership. Great relationships are ones where the homeowners are willing to provide the contractor with insight into their goals and priorities for the construction project. For example, on many projects, some compromises might need to be made. In these cases, it’s important that the remodeler know what’s important to the homeowner so they provide sound remodeling advice and help the homeowner make the best choices.

Communication doesn’t always have to be with words, either. After all, a picture is worth a thousand! If you find a photo that captures your vision for the space, please feel free to share. Your home remodeling contractor will appreciate the clarity and the insight into your vision for your beautiful new home. Feel free to browse photos from past Hudson Remodeling Bellingham home renovations for inspiration.

How can I tell which home remodeling bid is the best one?

Hudson Remodeling’s lead carpenter, Dave James, weighed in on that during a recent Q&A. Check out his answer here.

Hudson crew Q&A: Dave James

Posted 15 August 2018 by Team Hudson

When you welcome Hudson into your home for a remodel, you’re making a big commitment. A lot of trust and faith in our team is involved. We recognize that and would like to give you a chance to meet our crew members so when we do begin working together, it’ll feel comfy. 

With that in mind, we’re rolling out crew bios in the months ahead so you can get to know each person who may work in your home.

So, here we go! Let’s kick things off with Dave James, who’s been with Hudson for decades.

Hudson employee Dave James, standing in a grassy field wearing a T-shirt and jeans.

Dave James

Name: Dave James

Role: Lead carpenter

First year at Hudson: 1993. 2018 marks my 25th anniversary with Hudson Remodeling and I don’t plan on stopping anytime soon!

Favorite power tool: That would be an oscillating multitool. It’s a hugely versatile tool for remodelers. I use it to cut tile and wood trim. It helps me get in tight spots and do a good job with detailed finish work.

Your favorite thing to tear out during a remodel: I like demo days when we get to remove built-in plywood cabinets with seven layers of lead-based paint and replace them with modern, clean, custom cabinets. I also like knocking out the vertical bar that separates the cabinet doors under kitchen sinks. That bar makes it impossible for a guy like me to get under the sink to do any work; that annoying vertical bar is the first thing I tear out in a kitchen remodel.

One thing most people don’t know about you: Ha! Most people are surprised to learn that I’m obsessed with Game of Thrones; I’m a total Game of Thrones geek. My wife and I have watched the shows together, admittedly more than once. We know all the characters and love the story. Same with Lord of the Rings. I’ve read all those books.

If time and money were no object, what would you remodel at your own home? I’d actually do many of the things we do for Hudson clients: replace siding, upgrade windows, pop out a sliding patio door and replace it with a French door. I’d remodel the kitchen and do everything on my wife’s “honey-do” list.

One thing you think every homeowner should know before starting a remodel project: Understand that you get what you pay for. Don’t just take the lowest bid. Make sure you are comparing apples to apples when it comes to experience and quality standards. Not all contractors care about the little details that our crews do. We’re sticklers for the small stuff and that makes a difference in the finished product. If you want straight grout lines, tight trim joints and drywall without noticeable seams, make sure you’re hiring a contractor who can deliver that so you’re not left looking at flaws for years and years to come!

First thing you remember building: My dad was a remodeler so I started working with him early on. The first job I remember was hanging sheetrock in a hair salon that used to be in the hotel that is next to I-5 on Lakeway Drive in Bellingham – formerly The Lakeway Inn. I was about 12 years old.

First car: My first rig was a mid-’80s Dodge Ram 50 pickup truck.

Favorite candy: Gummy bears! Seriously. Haribo gummy bears are the best.

Featured project: Stunning cabinetry in a newly opened kitchen

Posted 26 July 2018 by Team Hudson

It’s recap time! We recently completed a gorgeous kitchen remodel in Bellingham that we’ve been eager to tell you about. It was a fun, vibrant project that the homeowners are thrilled with — but here’s one of the coolest parts: It was a relatively uncomplicated job, and thus it’s proof that even straightforward remodeling work can have a profound impact on your home!

Here’s what we did on this home remodeling project:

The client wanted a new kitchen that better opened up to the rest of the interior living space and to the outdoors. We pulled out the original cabinetry and appliances to create a blank slate, and then we removed a closet and a couple of interior walls to maximize the flow through the kitchen into the dining room.

As customers tend to do, these homeowners had dreams for the new space, and we customized their new laminate cabinets to fulfil their vision. They wanted a massive island with oodles of storage and cabinets that could be used to sneak counter appliances out of sight. They also wanted pull-out shelving, plenty of task and ambient lighting throughout the kitchen and power outlets that could be hidden from view but easily accessible.

Oh, and did we mention the cabinets themselves? They’re stunning, and they set quite a tone for the look and feel of the new kitchen.

We drew up the plans and created a 3D rendering of the space to help the homeowners see their vision in more concrete detail. And then, we set about making that dream a reality.

After replacing windows and doors in the kitchen and living room, we installed the new laminate cabinets all the way up to the 8-foot ceilings, maximizing their utility (and capitalizing on their stunning looks). We connected with Creative Stoneworks here in Bellingham for the beautiful granite countertops (which are called Fantasy Brown, if you’re looking for something like them).

Of course, the job called for a number of detail improvements throughout the space: recessed lighting, LED strip lighting, under-cabinet electrical outlets, laminate flooring and new lighting pendants and appliances.

Naturally, we also touched up the exterior siding where we installed the larger windows, putting the finishing stamp on another successful Whatcom County remodeling project.

If you’re interested in learning more about this kitchen (and living room and dining room) remodel, check out the photo gallery we made of this work. Trust us, you’re going to want to see the before-and-after differences!

And if you’d like your own kitchen dreams fulfilled, just give us a call or stop by our office in Lynden.

New siding, trim boosts curb appeal of these Whatcom County homes

Posted 28 June 2018 by Team Hudson

How’s your curb appeal these days?

When you get in your car to head to work, do you find yourself checking the rearview mirror for one last glance at your lovely mansion? Or would you rather not see that faded paint and worn siding any more than absolutely necessary?

If you’ve been thinking that your house is looking a little worse for wear lately, you’re probably not alone. (After all, your neighbors have likely noticed it, too.)

What’s worse, old siding and trim can be more than just an aesthetic problem. Gaps in your siding and around your windows and doors can be entry points for water and insects, both of which can cause large amounts of damage in little time. In the Pacific Northwest, heavy rainfalls and infrequent sunshine can exacerbate extant moisture problems.

Thankfully, a good cladding of solid trim can help seal your home, keeping the weather out and the warmth (or cold) in.

Recently, Hudson Remodeling completed a complete exterior siding and trim upgrade for one local customer, and we’ve been eager to show you the difference! It looks like an entirely new home — bold, beautiful and, most importantly, better protected against the elements.

Living in the Northwest means coming to terms with rain and wind and the damage that moisture can do to a home. Peeling paint, mildew, moss, rotted siding … many things that can happen to a house given enough time in the PNW weather. Thankfully, good siding — with a good installation — can withstand these elements, and this exterior refresh has put this home on a path toward health and beauty for decades to come. We’ve even heard from the neighbors how much they love the improvements.

Here’s another before/after set for you. Mismatched window and door trim left this home feeling a little uninspired. But the new version — with wide, Craftsman-style trim and a cohesive paint job — greatly improves the exterior look. (The addition doesn’t hurt, either, but that’s a story for another day.)

By the way, replacing siding also is a great time to replace any windows and doors that could use an upgrade, too. If your home still features single-pane aluminum or wood windows, for example, upgrading could mean a huge boost not only in looks, but in energy efficiency. That could mean savings of as much as $460 per year.

If your home’s exterior siding and trim could use a little TLC, consider giving Hudson a call. Our experts can give you an estimate and offer tips on the best options for your type of home and location.

Design ideas for every room in the house

Posted 29 May 2018 by Team Hudson

Do you ever open your front door, glance throughout your house and imagine how things might feel with a pinch here or pull there? If you love your home but are tired of its dated elements, keep reading. Here’s one simple home remodeling idea for every room in your house (plus a few bonus options). Who knows, you might be sitting in your dream home right now!

Luxurious walk-in shower

Bathroom: Swap out that aging soaker tub and replace it with a spacious walk-in shower. Hudson remodeling noted this as a hot trend coming into the year, and it hasn’t slowed down. We’ve been doing a number of tub-to-shower replacement projects throughout Whatcom County in recent years, and the simple reason is that showers are so much more useful — and enjoyable — than tubs these days.

Hallway: Add vinyl plank flooring and clear-coated fir or hemlock doors. Say goodbye to that grungy hallway carpet and hello to the clean and classy look of vinyl. Seriously, if you haven’t been paying attention to vinyl flooring lately, get on it! You can get vinyl flooring in just about any style you want, and paired with gorgeous wood-grain doors, it’s a look you’ll be thrilled with for years to come.

Kitchen: Install laminate kitchen cabinets for a smooth and beautiful surface that’s easy to clean. Hudson Remodeling recently completed a job that used stunning laminate cabinets as the centerpiece for a kitchen remodel, and the results speak for themselves.

Living Room: Updating your old aluminum windows to energy-efficient vinyl or wood windows can make a massive difference, both in looks and energy efficiency. But if you’re not quite ready for that, consider swapping out your dated baseboard and window trim for an updated overall look.

Fireplace in the master suiteBedroom: Want to make the bedroom a cozy place of retreat? A fireplace might be just the thing. Imagine curling up with a good book this winter next to the fireplace in your new master suite. Another trend we’ve been seeing lately in bedrooms is accent walls — one wall clad in wooden planking, perhaps, or with floor-to-ceiling bookshelves flanking a window.

Hudson Remodeling’s designers and craftsmen can work with you to find the perfect upgrades for your Whatcom County home. If you’re stumped for ideas, just give us a call or browse through our photo galleries of other recent home remodels in Bellingham, Lynden and throughout the county. Hudson can offer both inspiration and expertise in getting your home just the way you want it.

Household fixes that can make it easier to age in place

Posted 25 April 2018 by Team Hudson

Look around your home. Is it easy to tell what things might cause difficulty as you get older?

If you’re considering aging in place in the comfort of your own home — or if you’re helping your mom or dad do the same — there are some changes we’ve noted over the years that should help make things easier and more pleasant down the road.

Lever door handles and faucets: These are easy to overlook when you’re young, but the older you get the more you realize just how daunting a hard-to-grip door or faucet knob can be. Replacing all knobs around the home with levers can be a hugely important part of an aging-in-place home remodel.

Better lighting and switches: Like round door knobs, small and/or complicated light switches can cause problems for the elderly. Instead, opt for large, paddle-style switches that are easier to manipulate. While we’re on the subject, it would be a good idea to consider overall lighting. As our eyes grow dim with age, a more well-lit house can help us avoid tricky obstacles. A remodel that includes larger windows and wide-open spaces can do wonders for eyesight.

Wider doorways: Speaking of spaces, are your doorways wide enough to easily fit a walker or wheelchair? Doorways need to be at least 32 inches wide to accommodate wheelchairs, but often they’re only 28 inches or less. One key to successful aging in place is to remove potential barriers now so you don’t have to worry about them later.

No-step showers: Bathrooms are common places for falls. They’re often full of hard, slippery surfaces and slight changes in elevation that can catch people off guard. We’ve installed a number of step-free showers (such as Best Bath products) over the years, and our customers rave about them as a massive improvement, especially over bathtub showers that require complicated maneuvering to climb into and out of.

Bathroom grab bars: Strategically placed grab bars also can make a world of difference in a bathroom. Next to the toilet and near the entrance to the shower, specifically designed handholds can help ensure the elderly always stay balanced.

Step reduction: Is there a step up or down from the living room to the kitchen? How about from the driveway to the back door? Steps are among the largest trip hazards, and reducing them where possible is always a step up in safety.

Ground-floor bathroom and bedroom: Does your home (or your loved one’s home) have a ground-floor bathroom and bedroom? Single-level living is a major key to aging in place; you don’t want to be making multiple trips up and down long flights of stairs every day. If you have a multiple-story home, consider remodeling to put a bathroom and bedroom on the ground floor, along with the kitchen.

At Hudson Remodeling, we have years of experience converting Whatcom County houses to havens for those who want to grow old in their own homes, along with the awards and certifications to prove it. We would love to help you make your home a comfortable place to live for decades to come.

Feature: Whole-house remodel in Bellingham

Posted 28 March 2018 by Team Hudson

We’ve just finished up the most amazing whole-house remodeling job, and we’ve been dying to share it with you!

Our Whatcom County construction crews went all out on this job, refurbishing this home from top to bottom, inside and out. Wait until you see the before-and-after photos of the kitchen and bathroom.

The kitchen is the heart of the home, and the homeowner wanted something open to the living spaces. We completely gutted it, working from bare walls to realize the homeowners’ vision for the new kitchen design. We installed gorgeous new hardwood flooring, cherry cabinets, new countertops and backsplash tile, and new appliances. We also added an island to the center of the room for additional counter and gathering space.

Whole House Remodel

Our carpenters reframed the connection between the kitchen and living room, too, and extended the same amazing flooring (seriously, you’ve got to see this stuff) into that space as well.

We used the same rustic cherry cabinets in the master bath remodel, which also includes large-format, rectangular tile extending from the new shower (which features amazing views out over the landscape) across the wide-open bathroom floor.

Throughout the job, of course, we installed new wiring, plumbing, windows, doors and exterior siding to match the house’s rearranged layout.

This project was one of those situations where the homeowner loved the home’s location but felt that the finishings had become outdated. The result is a home that truly captures the owners’ style and maximizes the house’s amazing points — including the beautiful views and the abundance of sunlight streaming through windows and doors. From top to bottom, this is a home-remodeling job that our crews are extremely proud of, from designers to builders.

If you haven’t checked out our photo galleries lately, we’ve added a bunch of new work in the past few months. Here’s a quote from a recent clients whose home remodeling job is among those galleries: “We have over 25 years experience doing home renovations, but we have never had a more delightful time updating our home than working with Hudson Remodeling. They transformed our vision into our favorite room in the house. The stress that comes from remodeling a home was greatly reduced by the professionalism of their construction team, who always respected our personal space, provided excellent craftsmanship, and gave timely input to make the finished product even better than we imagined it could be. We were lucky enough to get Hudson to work on our project and would not hesitate to use them again or recommend them to others.”

If you’ve been thinking about making upgrades to your Bellingham or Whatcom County home, please consider giving Hudson Remodeling a call. We’d love to hear from you. Not only do we pay close attention to the smallest details, we also have the vision and design skills to envision and implement a cohesive design for your home.

Whole House Remodel

How Hudson works with home designers

Posted 28 February 2018 by Team Hudson

At Hudson Remodeling, we don’t do things halfway. We pay attention to the smallest detail while always keeping the big picture — what our clients want their homes to look and feel like — in view.

When we’re done with a project, we want the homeowner to be awestruck by the beauty of their homes and to continue to be impressed the more they live in the space.

When homeowners have remodeling ideas, our in-house design team is adept at facilitating a smooth transition from dream to reality. We also work with a number of outside designers in Bellingham and elsewhere who draw up brilliant plans and then hand them off to our crews for completion.

We love working with outside designers. Here’s why:

Designers are experts in home design. They know how to make the most of the space in the home, whether designing for flow, efficiency, comfort, style or all of the above. Because designers stay up-to-date on design trends — including those that haven’t even started yet — they’re able to design just the right look and feel to ensure a home meets its owners desires, both now and in the future.

That’s where Hudson comes in. One of the biggest reasons that Bellingham and Whatcom home designers choose Hudson is our ability to produce exactly what the designer intended. Our expertise in carpentry, tile-setting and project management ensure that we can handle any project given to us, on time and on budget.

In creating their plans, designers must take into account any number of a homeowner’s priorities. Some homeowners want less clutter and a clean, open look. 

Others want the comfy feel of built-in bookshelves, fireplaces and kitchen islands. And then there are the homeowners who want modern updates that will allow them to age in place and enjoy their home for decades without worry.

Whatever the priorities and whatever the plans, Hudson is adept at making them happen.

Consider the details in this waterfront room, which we transformed from an outdoor patio to comfy indoor space — for humans and dogs alike. Or how about the tile work in this gorgeous Bellingham bath. Whatever designers come up with, Hudson Remodeling’s team of experts can handle.

Porches, patios and sunrooms make the most of summer living

Posted 23 January 2018 by Team Hudson

It’s January, and it’s cold.

We love that about the Pacific Northwest, right? We enjoy that there are four distinct seasons, and we love that juuuust about when we’re getting tired of one season, the next one dawns.

So as we sit here enjoying the last vestiges of winter, there’s no shame in dreaming for a minute about how much fun we’ll have in summer, basking in the warm sun of the great outdoors. As you snuggle into that extra pair of socks, just imagine what life could be like with a new covered porch, patio, open sunroom or sun-facing deck when summer rolls around.

Not only could a patio or sunroom help you enjoy the sun of summer, but they can even extend the seasons, allowing you to enjoy the sights, smells and sounds of the outdoors long into fall.

 Consider this covered patio we’re finishing up right now in Ferndale. The gently sloped roof gives the homeowners almost 500 square feet of covered exterior space for barbecuing with friends, enjoying the sounds of nature and soaking up the summer warmth outdoors. It connects the house with the gorgeous landscaping surrounding it, essentially creating an outdoor living room — perfect for those endless summer days when you just can’t get enough of being outside. Need more patio inspiration? Check out these gorgeous options at This Old House.

Speaking of extending your home: Uncovered decks are a great option, too. This custom Trex deck we built in Bellingham gives the homeowner lovely outdoor space by extending the home out over the yard, right up against the trees. What a lovely spot to sit out with a cup of coffee on those warm summer mornings or to enjoy dinner with friends among the sounds of chirping birds and rustling branches. Scroll over to Houzz for some more amazing decks.

Or how about this beautiful sunroom, which extended one part of the home to create a completely enclosed space chock full of windows and skylights to flood the room with beautiful, warm sunlight.

No matter how you like to enjoy the outdoors during summer, Hudson Remodeling has the ideas and expertise to get you there. We can even come up with 3D renderings of the project, as we did with the covered patio above, to help you imagine the finished product before we even get started. 

Summer will be here before you know it! If you’ve been thinking of ways that a patio, porch or sunroom might help you enjoy it even more, just give the experts at Hudson a call, and we’ll brainstorm some ideas together.

 

Design/build: Seamlessly breathes new life into your home

Posted 27 December 2017 by Team Hudson

Hudson Remodeling is a design/build contractor intent on giving our Whatcom County clients the best possible home remodeling experience.

How can we do that? One word: teamwork.

One of the reasons we use the design/build model at Hudson is because of the opportunity it affords us to work together on nearly every aspect of a home remodeling project. From the initial meeting and project estimating to the final walkthrough, teamwork and continuity are tools that create a successful project and a happy homeowner.

Simply, the home remodeling process at Hudson includes two main stages:

  • In the design stage, the homeowner’s ideas for the project are translated by an experienced building designer into construction plans that show exactly what will be done on the job. On larger construction projects, 3D renderings are employed to give homeowners a clear picture of what they can look forward to.
  • In the building stage, Hudson Remodeling’s team of remodeling carpenters and finishers translate those plans into the new kitchen, bath or porch that the homeowner envisioned.

The most important thing to remember about the design/build process is that with this system, both the designer and the builder are on the same team. They understand each other, they work well together and they have a vested interest in ensuring that the project proceeds as smoothly as possible. Each side works with the other to obviate any potential hiccups before they happen. The designer won’t make plans for things the contractor can’t build, and the contractor has direct communication with the designer in case they bump into unanticipated challenges during construction.

Here are a few reasons why Whatcom County remodeling clients love the design/build process:

  • The homeowner signs just one contract and works with one team throughout the process.
  • Everyone involved knows the project scope and budget. The team works hard to work within those guidelines.
  • Communication is strong throughout the process, from design to demo to “done!”
  • Design/build jobs tend to be more streamlined, meaning projects sometimes start sooner.

At Hudson Remodeling, we like to sum up our design/build process this way: It’s all about working seamlessly as a team – homeowners, designer, carpenters – to breathe new life into a home.

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