Hudson Remodeling News

Upstairs and down, Hudson refreshes South Bellingham home

Posted 5 February 2020 by Team Hudson

Hudson Remodeling recently completed a whole-house remodel near Lake Padden in South Bellingham that improved every part of the home — upstairs and downstairs, inside and out.

The result is a modern space with ample room for this client’s young family and even some gorgeous downstairs living space for their parents in the daylight basement.

On the main floor, Hudson’s remodeling crews remodeled the living room, dining room, laundry room, entryway, master bathroom and second bathroom. In the basement, we remodeled the family room and two bathrooms. We also refurbished the deck and added concrete stairs down one side of the house to create additional access to a backyard patio. Hudson’s crew members also added a ceiling system to the underside of the deck to ensure the patio area underneath stays dry in the Bellingham rain.

Let’s walk through the main aspects of this completed remodeling project:

We removed carpeting in the living room, hallway and two bedrooms and replaced it with 770 square feet of hardwood flooring. All flooring was sanded and re-finished with a darker, more modern stain.

We replaced the existing water heater with two on-demand models that supply a consistent flow of hot water throughout the home. We also fixed a problem with noisy heating ducts and added a gas line for an outdoor grill.

In the laundry room, we installed a new laundry sink, faucet, countertop and cabinet to match the kitchen cabinets. We tucked the washer and dryer inside a new appliance cabinet created to provide space for shoes and other storage.

In the dining room, Hudson replaced the sliding door leading out to the large upper deck and installed two new vinyl picture windows. Our carpentry crews also installed new window seat cabinets with built-in storage — designed to closely match the kitchen cabinetry — and routed the floor heating vent into the toe kick.

Master bathroom with new tub and dual-sink vanity

For the living room fireplace, Hudson’s crews framed a new firebox into which we installed a new gas fireplace framed by cultured stone veneer and topped with a wood mantel. We widened the entry closet and installed a new bench seat, shelf and hooks for the family’s outdoor gear. We placed a railing alongside the basement stairs and installed a new handrail to complement the new wood flooring.

Stylistically, the master bathroom probably saw the biggest change of all. Out went the old square brown tiles, honey-colored wood cabinets and built-in corner bathtub. They were replaced by walls of white subway tiles, charcoal floor tiles in a hexagonal pattern, and a gorgeous free-standing white bathtub for the corner. Hudson’s crews also removed a closet from the adjoining bathroom and used that space for a new 3-foot-by-5-foot walk-in shower. The master bathroom also received a new dual-sink vanity cabinet with slab drawers and shaker doors. The quartz countertop here, as in the other bathrooms Hudson’s contracting crews remodeled for this project, came from Creative Stoneworks in Bellingham.

Bathroom remodel with dual-sink vanity and luxury vinyl plank flooring

The second bathroom on the main floor, which shares a wall with the master bath, also was completely remodeled, with a new vanity, sink and quartz countertop and new luxury vinyl plank flooring.

In the basement, Hudson removed all of the carpeting and installed luxury vinyl plank throughout. In the basement bathrooms — including a guest bath and a master bath — we installed new showers, vanities (with quartz countertops and tile backsplashes) and a new comfort-height toilet ideal for aging in place.

As one would expect with a whole-house remodel of this size, Hudson’s crews also replaced sheetrock throughout the house and completed all of the necessary detail work, including replacing  trim with a painted, wider profile to update the entire style of the house. 

For more photos of this project, please visit the related photo gallery.

How to improve a home’s natural light

Posted 2 January 2020 by Team Hudson

There’s nothing like natural light. It’s environmentally friendly, kind to electrical bills, pleasant in character and — even during the darkest days of Pacific Northwest winters  — in abundant supply (at least for part of the day).

Whatcom County homeowners looking for a boost to the character and feel of their homes have plenty of options for increasing the amount of warm, natural light they can enjoy indoors.

Windows: Windows should always be a homeowner’s first choice for introducing natural light. Not only do they brighten up a room, but they also visually open up the space and extend the home into the outdoors. Plus, they’re fairly easy to install. Hudson Remodeling’s Bellingham construction crews recently installed a full two-story wall of windows in one Bellingham home, opening up grand vistas of the Puget Sound and flooding the home with gorgeous light, dawn to dusk.

Solar tubes: Solar tubes are incredible. They look and feel like recessed lighting, and they can be so bright they’ll leave you fumbling for the switch as you leave the room. Solar tubes work by taking the sunlight from outside and channeling in through a reflective tube and then diffusing that light throughout the room. Solar tubes are brilliant and cost-effective ways to introduce additional light into a space, often costing as little as one-half or even one-fourth as much as skylights. Consider them for windowless bathrooms, that dark corner of the kitchen or in other spaces without adequate window lighting. Solar tubes produce the equivalent of three to ten (or more) 100-watt incandescent light bulbs, depending on size — all without requiring any electricity whatsoever.

Skylights: In essence, skylights are windows placed into the roof. They are especially nice when there’s not a lot of attic space to contend with during insulation, but they can be installed through any height of attic. However, they’ll lose some light to absorption within the skylight well, and they don’t take advantage of diffusion systems (like solar tubes do) to spread the light around the room. Skylights can serve to raise room temperature, so you might consider whether that would be welcomed (or appreciated!).

Window wells: In basement living spaces, windows should be close to the floor and large enough to provide egress in the event of an emergency. These larger windows also provide the benefit of additional daylight into underground spaces. If your home in Bellingham, Ferndale or Lynden was built with a basement, consider the benefits of enlarging underground windows.

Additional possibilities: While you’re mulling over the above home remodeling options to increase your Whatcom County home’s natural light, you also might consider a few additional options for a sunlight boost:

  • Add more mirrors or other shiny objects, especially in places where they can reflect window light.
  • Replace an exterior door with one that contains a window — a full-panel window would work great, but even a small half-circle at eye height would add important natural light.
  • Replace opaque window treatments with sheer curtains that maintain privacy while also allowing natural light to filter into the home, even when closed.
  • Use lighter paint colors on walls and ceilings. You might even consider a high-gloss paint on your ceiling to boost the reflection potential. Consider swapping out your flooring, too, for a lighter, more reflective option. Changing from carpet to a light-colored wood, for example, can make a big difference.
  • In lieu of windows, consider using glass blocks in exterior walls. Remember that they are not load bearing, though, so contact a good home remodeling contractor to install them.
  • Consider opening up your indoor space, removing walls and doors or using translucent instead of opaque dividers.
  • Cut back and/or move any exterior plants that might be keeping sunlight from entering the home.
  • Clean your windows! Have you ever noticed how much better you can see in your car after getting it washed? Your home windows are no different. A good cleaning can make a noticeable difference.

When you’re ready for your beautiful new windows, doors, skylights or solar tubes, please reach out to Hudson Remodeling. Our Bellingham construction crew works throughout Whatcom County to improve the character and livability of our clients’ homes, taking advantage of all of the beautiful natural light that the Pacific Northwest has to offer.

From chalet to chic: Door-to-dormer remodel transforms this Bellingham home

Posted 3 December 2019 by Team Hudson

From front door to dormer, porch to peak, this Whatcom County home remodel was truly a whole-house renovation.

After purchasing this log cabin near the water in South Bellingham, the new owners wanted to make a few updates in style and functionality. Out went the floor-to ceiling wood (most of it, anyway), and in came a few improvements to the overall flow and feel of the home.

The full list of what was done to transform this home from chalet to chic is extensive, but some highlights should suffice to share the extent of the project:

  • A dormer was added to the second-level master bedroom, creating additional space for a master bathroom. The kitchen was completely remodeled, and the laundry facilities and water heater were relocated to make room for a larger kitchen and mudroom entrance.
  • In the living room, windows were added to the gable wall, creating what essentially is a full wall of windows, letting in an enormous amount of natural light and creating astounding views of the home’s natural setting.
  • The guest bathroom also was remodeled from floor to ceiling. Finally, to help tone down the log cabin vibe, sheetrock was added to several walls and some of the ceilings throughout the house. This created an additional benefit by adding rigid foam insulation to the log walls to improve the interior climate.

Now, for a few details:

The kitchen and laundry were completely redone from scratch. That meant removing the cabinets, appliances, door, windows, flooring and everything else. Hudson’s crews removed an interior wall to create a welcoming mudroom, reframed the wall between the kitchen and living room, moved the bar counter from one side to the other, and added a sink in the new bar counter. Hudson’s carpentry experts also reconfigured the placement of the doors and windows, added operable skylights, and moved the oven and refrigerator.

The exterior walls received a treatment of sheetrock with a backsplash made of textured white subway tiles. To replace the vinyl laminate flooring, we extended the existing fir from the living room throughout the kitchen. The new mudroom received tile flooring. Some of the original log wall remained exposed in the mudroom area to show the roots of the structure. Gorgeous new pendant lights grace the new bar counter, and low-profile LED lights were added to the vaulted ceiling. The overall effect of the kitchen remodel is a much brighter, lighter and inviting space.

The primary new feature of the living room is the huge gable wall full of windows. Large picture windows fill the vaulted room with light and bring the pastoral views inside.

Hudson’s craftsman also re-finished the existing wood treads and added a gorgeous steel cable railing to the staircase that leads to the second level. We removed and replaced the corner fireplace area with a modern wood stove and added a custom mantel made from a log from one of the removed walls.

The master bedroom got a huge boost as well, as a new dormer was installed to create additional space to add a master bathroom. With the dormer in place, Hudson crew members installed new dark-walnut cabinetry and a sink, shower and toilet, among other bathroom accoutrements.

The new walk-in shower was tiled floor to ceiling with a fun mix of white subway times and blue-gray hexagonal tiles, and the bathroom floor received small white hexagonal tiles to complete the look. In the bathroom, several small windows look out over the yard, and one triangular portal offers a view down into the grand living room and the windowed gable wall beyond.

Hudson crews gutted the guest bathroom, removing all plumbing and light fixtures, cabinets, sheetrock, and the tub and shower. A new tub and tile shower surround went in, along with new cabinets, sink and faucet.

In the shower, Hudson’s tile experts installed three bands of tiles: blue squares at the top, light blue glass tile squares in the middle, and white tiles at the top to mimic the idea of water falling from above and creating a mist.

The two guest bedrooms also received upgrades. New windows went in, insulation was added and sheetrock was placed on the walls to tone down the wood finishes that had been rampant throughout the house. Hudson Remodeling’s design/build expertise was invaluable for this Bellingham home remodeling project, as the scope of the work resulted in numerous changes to the renovation plan.

The homeowners were able to see 3D CAD renderings of any changes, as needed, to help them make decisions on the look and feel of the home they wanted.

Local tile, hardwood and carpet options that will floor you

Posted 30 October 2019 by Team Hudson

Upgrading your flooring is an amazing way to change the look and feel of your home. From the classic look of hardwood to the cushy comfort of carpet, flooring can be chosen to match your intended style or set an ideal mood.

But how do Whatcom County homeowners know which options are better quality? How do you know which products will last into the next generation?

One way to ensure that you’re getting your money’s worth in flooring is to buy local. Doing so gives you access to a team of experts who know their craft inside and out. When homeowners work with a design/build contractor like Hudson Remodeling, they essentially are tapping into our team of vendors, each of which is an expert in its own area. These Whatcom flooring professionals know what brands will wear well and what options are a no-go for our Pacific Northwest climate.

If you’re looking to refresh your home through upgraded flooring, let’s dive into some of the options:

Hardwood flooring: High-quality hardwood flooring is typically the most expensive option for flooring, but there truly is nothing like it. While there are excellent products out there that come close to mimicking the look and feel of hardwood, many customers still choose actual wood flooring for its durability and timeless look. As you can see from this recent project, hardwood floors can contribute to a stunning overall look for your home. For hardwood flooring, Hudson Remodeling often chooses Bellingham’s Robinson Hardwood & Homes on Grant Street.

Carpet: When underfoot softness is what you want, there really is no substitute. There’s simply nothing like wall-to-wall carpet for increasing the overall comfort and coziness of a room. As with any flooring option, though, it’s important to install good-quality carpet that will resist stains and wear so that it still looks good 10 or 20 years down the road. For great carpet, Hudson Remodeling chooses The Color Pot on North State Street in Bellingham.

Tile: With its large variety of styles, materials and uses, floor tile continues to be a popular option for homeowners. One bathroom Hudson Remodeling renovated recently received gorgeous black and white tiles with a pattern reminiscent of styles common in Spain and Portugal. Another was outfitted with 12-inch-by-24-inch ceramic tiles. For floor tile, Hudson Remodeling works with Aqui Esta Tile on Grant Street in Bellingham. Some customers’ tile is also sourced from The Color Pot.

Vinyl and linoleum: Luxury vinyl plank flooring (not that cheap stuff you might remember from your childhood) is a beautiful option that is seeing a big resurgence these days. Linoleum, which is one of the most eco-friendly flooring options you can buy, also is seeing a comeback. The materials used to make linoleum are cost-effective, natural, biodegradable and renewable. And the reason for the growth of vinyl flooring? Advances in technology have made it cost-effective to produce plank-style vinyl flooring with surface designs and embossing that help it emulate real wood or even stone tile. For great linoleum and vinyl options, Hudson Remodeling prefers Mobile Floor Coverings on Hammer Drive in Bellingham.

Are you considering some exciting flooring upgrades in your home? Give Hudson Remodeling a call today.

The benefits of bumping out

Posted 27 September 2019 by Team Hudson

Here’s the scenario:

You’ve got a bathroom that’s about one walk-in shower too small, but you don’t want to take space from the neighboring bedroom to get it there.

Or perhaps your galley kitchen is just begging for a more comfortable working triangle, but with other important parts of the house surrounding it, you’d rather not steal from Peter to pay Paul.

A creative bump-out addition — or a micro-addition, as they’re sometimes called — can be the difference-maker here. Moving a section of exterior wall out a few feet is often the best way to gain additional space indoors, with the only loss being a little yard or garden space.

What could you do with a bump out?

A strategic bump out could add an eating area to your kitchen, a stand-alone shower to your bathroom, a reading nook or home office to the living room, a powder room to a hallway or walk-in closet to a bedroom, among other things. The choices are many. Heck, if you’re one of those people who still uses your garage to park cars, you could add bump-out space in the garage that gives you a workbench and tool storage.

Hudson Remodeling completed a bump-out addition recently that gave our clients a second-floor lounge area, complete with fireplace and small deck. The new room takes advantage of the home’s stellar Lake Whatcom views while integrating seamlessly into the rest of the home, both inside and out.

How big can a bump out be?

How big your new space can be depends largely on how you build it. If you’re supporting the addition with a foundation or footings, you can typically go out as far as your yard size will allow. If the bump out is cantilevered — with no support underneath — then you’ll be limited by the length of the joists inside the home. Cantilevering is done by attaching new joists to existing ones, and in most cases the length of the joist outside the home can’t be more than half of the length inside.

You also want to keep in mind the aesthetics of the home when designing your addition; ideally, as it did with the Lake Whatcom home we worked on, the add-on will fit seamlessly into the look of the rest of the home. Hiring a design/build contractor can really save you here, as you’ll get someone who will take into account not only the aesthetics of the addition but also its feasibility and fit with your budget.

Of course, the size of your little addition also will depend on what it’s being used for. You could go out as little as two feet to add needed kitchen space, six feet to turn your powder room into a master bath, or even 10 or 12 feet to add an entirely new room. The choice is yours!

Whatever your plans, the design/build team here at Hudson Remodeling can handle it. To discuss your upcoming bump-out project and how it might add much-needed space to your home, give the pros at Hudson a call.

Tile work puts stylish stamp on bathroom remodeling project

Posted 30 August 2019 by Team Hudson

Here at Hudson Remodeling, one of our calling cards has always been our crews’ attention to detail. Nowhere has that focus been more evident than on this two-bath renovation project we did in Whatcom County.

This Bellingham project gave new life to a master and guest bathroom, both of which were completely gutted and remodeled. This photo gallery includes some before-and-after shots of the work to help you get a full picture of the bathroom remodel project. As you can see, it was quite a change!

Master bath upgrades

In the master bathroom, we removed the old fiberglass shower, fiberglass soaking tub, toilet and mirror. We also ripped out the old vinyl flooring and underlayment in preparation for a gorgeous new floor of 12-inch-by-24-inch ceramic tile.

This giant walk-in shower replaced a fiberglass soaker tub and shower surround.

The plan here was to replace the old shower and bathtub with a spacious tiled shower, so we framed in a 4-foot-by-6-foot space with room for a trench drain, tiled bench, tiled footrest and large niche.

On the shower wall, we installed large, warm gray tiles, similar to the tiles we placed on the bathroom floor. Adding interest to the shower walls is a decorate stripe of black mosaic tile, running from one end to the other and also filling in the back of the two-shelf niche. On the floor of the shower and the top of the bench seat, our crews installed sliced black stone to complete the look.

We installed a wall-to-wall (approximately 10-foot-long) vanity cabinet, crafted by Northwest Woodslayer here in Bellingham, and over that placed a black granite countertop with dual rectangular, undermount sinks.

This new faucet in the master bathroom is set off by a gorgeous hexagonal backsplash that runs up to the ceiling.

On the wall over the vanity, we ran a stunning hexagonal tile up to the ceiling, framing three flush-mount medicine cabinets with inline lights. Two of the cabinets contain electrical outlets, and one houses a pull-out magnifying mirror.

We also installed a heated tile floor in the master bathroom, with a touch-screen programmable timer. In the vanity sink cabinet, we installed a hot-water recirculating pump to improve the delivery of hot water to the sinks and the shower.

Guest bath upgrades

The plan in the guest bath was to continue the look, with some slightly different choices. The old fiberglass tub/shower combo came out, to be replaced with a stylish acrylic soaker tub and tiled shower surround.

The shower wall tile in the guest bath is the same as the master, with a similar decorative stripe and niche — but with slightly different tile. In the guest bath, we used a pearl-finish dark tile in a brick pattern, and that same tile continued over to the backsplash above the black granite countertop.

The guest bath upgrades were similar to those in the master bath, with a long maple hardwood vanity and beautiful tile work.

As in the master, Hudson’s crews installed dual under-mount rectangular sinks in the guest bath. For a backsplash, we installed four rows of the 4-inch, rectangular, pearl-finish tile under a large, framed mirror that covers almost the entire wall. The mirror is actually the one that was in the old bathroom, but Hudson’s carpenters built a wood frame for it that matches the new maple hardwood cabinets.

Backsplash detail in the guest bath.

We converted the existing electrical outlets to GFCI, for safety, and installed an additional outlet above the vanity. Additional details in the guest bathroom remodel include a new exhaust fan with timer switch and baseboard made of floor tile.

The abundance of detailed tile work made this quite a fun job for our team, and we’re proud of the end result. Of course, the fact that the homeowner loves the work is the best reward of all.

Planning a kitchen remodel? Here’s what you need to know.

Posted 23 July 2019 by Team Hudson

The kitchen really is the castle itself. This is where we spend our happiest moments and where we find the joy of being a family.

-American chef Mario Batali

In most homes, the kitchen truly is — above all the other beloved rooms in the house — the room we share. That fact alone is probably the biggest reason kitchens are such a popular room for remodeling. If we are going to spend so much of our time in the kitchen, after all, why not make it a room we truly love?

If you have been considering a kitchen remodel for your Whatcom County home, there are a few things — based on Hudson’s years of experience in completing kitchen remodels throughout the Pacific Northwest — that you might want to consider while planning your own project:

This CAD rendering helped the homeowner visualize the new kitchen, the finished version of which is shown below.

Work with a designer and get a CAD rendering of the kitchen plans to help you visualize the design and workflow of the new kitchen. There truly is no better way to envision the space than to see a 3D rendering of it. Working with an experienced kitchen designer will help you be sure that you’re getting a kitchen that flows and functions well years down the road.

Don’t buy low-quality cabinets or countertops; as items you see and use every single day, these should be well-made and long-lasting. Cheap cabinets might look good for the first year or so, but for long-term satisfaction, an investment in high-quality cabinets is essential.

Plan for lots of people in the kitchen. Whether you’re expecting it or not, your new kitchen will probably end up being the place family and friends tend to congregate (even more than your current one). Consider adding a working bar or opening up views to the living room. Especially if your current kitchen is on the smallish side, now’s a good time to open it up for more space. Here’s where that CAD rendering can come in handy, as without one it can be difficult to visualize a completely new space.

Include bells and whistles that you’ll be thankful for in the future, like under-cabinet lighting, a pantry cabinet and an appliance garage. Make gourmet coffee every day? Consider a small coffee nook in one corner for your gadgets. Have heirloom serving dishes from your great-grandmother? Consider a glass-fronted corner cabinet with built-in lighting.

If you can help it, avoid moving the sink, dishwasher, stove or refrigerator, as this can add complication and cost. On the other hand, while you’re having the work done, it’s worth doing it right — so if you do need to rearrange the kitchen, do it now.

Want red cabinets? Go for it!

Save your quirky personal style choices for things that are inexpensive — but only if you’re planning to sell within the year.  If you’re not planning to sell, go ahead build the home you want to live in instead of crafting it for an anonymous, potential buyer. After all, you could have the pleasure of enjoying your fun and stylish choices for many years. Want a lime green counter? Go for it!

Expect to pay around $50,000 to $70,000 for a complete remodel (more if you factor in the cost of new appliances). At Hudson, our starting price for a small remodel is around $40,000. The 2019 national average for a midrange major kitchen remodel is over $65,000, with an upscale remodel double that, at $132,000, according to the 2019 Remodeling Cost vs. Value Report.

To chat with a professional at Hudson Remodeling about your kitchen remodel plans in Bellingham, Ferndale, Lynden or elsewhere in Whatcom or Skagit counties, give us a call at 360-354-7006 or email us at info@hudsonremodeling.com.

What can you do with that basement space?

Posted 28 June 2019 by Team Hudson

There are two ways to look at an unfinished basement:

  1. It’s a dank, scary place full of spiders and probably other gross things.
  2. It’s a gold mine just waiting to be tapped!

Since you’re reading this, we know you’re the type of person to look at a basement as a huge remodeling opportunity. Kudos to you! We like you already.

Here are a few ideas for using a basement remodel to turn that dark underground space into a useful, functional and fun room you’ll love to visit.

Art studio or craft area: Let your ideas run wild in a space crafted just to your tastes. Maybe you want a large, open painting studio, or perhaps you’d like to build a photography darkroom into one corner. Maybe you’d like a comfortable nook for your sewing machine with a wall cabinet dedicated to your favorite yards of cloth? Or how about a huge drafting table, large-format printer or sculpting table? Whatever your artistic passion, odds are your basement can become the art studio of your dreams.

Fitness room: That basement space might be perfect for a few pieces of exercise equipment. A stationary bike here, a Nordic Track there, a set of free weights in the corner next to the rowing machine… your basement could make the perfect home gym!

Media center: This one’s becoming a classic basement idea — nice leather couches, large flat-screen television, nearby bathroom, maybe even a fireplace or wet bar. Hudson Remodeling’s carpenters recently added a bar to one home here in Whatcom County, and it’s a real treat!

Hudson Remodeling recently added this small bar to a Bellingham home during a basement remodel.

Library or study: Some man caves are all about sports and video games, while others are decked with book-lined walls framing a large fireplace opposite a desk for studying and a wing-backed chair for reading. If a basement book library sounds like your idea of fun, we’d love to chat with you about ideas!

Laundry room: Perhaps you’re already using your basement as a laundry room. But couldn’t it be so much nicer? Maybe you could use space for a large washbasin or a wall-mounted drying rack? You spend a lot of time doing laundry, and you should be able do it in a renovated laundry room.

In a basement remodel, the addition of large window wells like this one create easy ways to exit the home in an emergency while also providing ample natural light.

Guest apartment: There are so many possibilities here. You could craft a cute space for your mother-in-law to live in close proximity to the family. You could build an apartment that can be rented out on Airbnb or Vrbo. You could create a suite for that day when one of your kids inevitably needs to crash at your house for a month. All of these are wonderful ideas; just be sure to check your local building regulations regarding the addition of any cooking facilities or additional dwelling units (often referred to as ADUs) to your basement.

Home office: Technology is making remote work an increasing possibility these days. Consider carving out some space in your basement for a secluded home office that offers the tranquility of an office with the comforts of proximity to the finer points of home life — like your spouse, kids and the coffee maker. Capitalize on the natural light coming from large window wells to improve the quality of the workspace.

Playroom: One of the high points of remodeling your basement to serve as the kids’ play area is that you – and your guests – will rarely have to see whatever mess your children have going on down there. Plus, a basement playroom would give the kids space to be a little louder than they might get to be elsewhere in the house. A win for both kids and parents! Whatever your idea for your unfinished basement, please give us a call if you’d like to talk about plans. Hudson Remodeling has years of experience with many types of home remodels throughout Whatcom County.

Bring your 80s- or 90s-era home into the present

Posted 30 May 2019 by Team Hudson

Homes built near the end of the last century had distinctive design features. Remember these?

Fake flooring. Octagonal windows. Hunter green and maroon wallpaper. Plastic drawer pulls and plasticky cabinets. Soaker tubs and carpet in the bathroom. Half-round windows with sunburst shutters set into sponge-painted walls.

Oh, yeah. The 1980s and 1990s were a glorious time for home decor.

Overall home structure suffered a bit in that time period, too, with split-levels dominating the scene and banks of free-hanging kitchen cabinets all the rage.

Whatcom County’s population has more than doubled since the 1980s — from 100,000 in 1980 to 170,000 in 2000 to 220,000 today — and all those people have to live somewhere. Whatcom County is full of ’80s and ’90s homes that, despite decent bones and potential, could use a little leap into the present.

Is yours one of those homes? Read on. Homes from the 1980s and ’90s can totally be fixed. Here’s how:

Improve the flow. While you may not be able to undo the split-level glory of your home, there’s a lot you can do to improve the overall feel of the house. Knocking out strategic walls can improve flow and open sightlines. Widening hallways, adding windows and adding lighter finishes can diminish the cave-like feeling of many older homes. This also can have the side benefit of enabling your home to be more livable in your later years.

Go tub-free. There must have been a point in the past when we felt we had all the time in the world to soak our cares away in our master-bath Jacuzzis. Even if we do have time to spare, most people are finding that it’s better enjoyed in a spacious shower than in a black — or pink, or beige — bathtub. Swapping the old soaker tub for a relaxing shower not only makes it more fun to get clean, but it also does wonders for the visual feel of a bathroom.

Update trim. Homes built toward the end of last century weren’t big on trim. Bull-nosed drywall was a common way to trim out windows, and when trim was used, it was thin and unassuming. On one recent job, we updated some of the trim to a wider craftsman/modern style. The change was such an improvement that we were able to retain the slightly dated slab doors and butternut color window linings, saving the client some money. Instead of fighting the trim color, we embraced it and used an updated profile that made a big impact.

Update the kitchen cabinets. Taking out the awkward hanging bank of cabinets and/or bar counter and opening up passage to the living/dining room is one quick way to make a massive improvement to an older kitchen. We did that on one recent home, and the results are astounding. If you’re not ready to go that far, though, simply updating the style of your cabinets or even painting them can make a difference.

Homes built in the 1980s and 1990s have a ton of potential! Updating them just takes an eye for the needs of you and your family and the look of the home you want to live in.

Need help with any of these projects? Hudson Remodeling has been sprucing up Whatcom County homes for years, and we know the ins and outs of both whole-house remodels and selective improvements to turn 1980s and 1990s homes into timeless treasures.

Bellingham home remodeled to create master bath, office space

Posted 24 April 2019 by Team Hudson

Hudson Remodeling recently completed a multi-room remodel at a cute home in Bellingham that resulted in a new powder room, a conjoined master bedroom and office, an expanded master bathroom and improvements to the living room.

Let’s start with the bathrooms. To create the new powder room, we removed built-in cabinetry from the master bathroom and hallway. We removed the existing hardwood floor to install gorgeous black and white tiles with a pattern reminiscent of styles common in Spain and Portugal. The powder room got a new toilet and the original bathroom’s pedestal sink, installed against a background wall of crisp, gray subway tiles.

In the original bathroom, we created additional space by removing the brick chimney and expanding into the bedroom closet. We removed the existing white tile and laid down some radiant heating cable, above which we installed the same patterned tile from the new powder room. We connected the bathroom and bedroom with a new doorway, framing the wall just wide enough to accommodate the furnace venting that we moved out of the chimney. We slid the toilet back against the new wall and, on the other side, installed a length of cherry hardwood cabinets with Shaker-style doors and slab drawers. A new tall cherry linen cabinet was installed at one end to frame the Cambria quartz countertop with undermount sink. For a backsplash, we installed a coordinated length of tile in a gray-marbled basket-weave pattern. The chrome and stainless steel accents throughout the room — faucet, door handles, light fixtures and more — add elegance and tie together the honey-brown wood and patterned tile floor.

In the master bedroom, we moved a wall that had been dividing the space in two, using hardwood from the powder room to seamlessly patch the floor. We removed some built-in cabinetry from the bedroom and framed in a new closet (the old one was removed to make space for the bathroom). We also installed a new window in the bedroom, refinished the hardwood flooring there and in the hallway, and gave the walls and ceilings several fresh coats of paint. The result is a spacious new bedroom with adjoining master bathroom and office that makes much more functional sense.

Out in the living room, we installed a new wood fireplace mantel and retiled the hearth with a larger, darker tile that better matches the home’s existing style.

In the end, the homeowner was pleased with Hudson Remodeling’s ability to update the home with modern conveniences while retaining the house’s original character and style. Another successful Bellingham home renovation is in the books!

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