Category: Tips


The Ultimate Tile Guide: All About Tiling

Is there such thing as choosing the wrong tiles?

Yes! Of course.

As common and seemingly universal as tiles are, most aren’t appropriate for every surface type. With this quick tile guide, you’ll learn which tiles are suitable for which household surfaces and environments.

Why are tiles so common in the home?

Tiles are found in many homes because they are versatile in terms of materials, are economical, and incredibly durable.

In addition, using the right kind of tiles in any given area of the home can lend that area a unique appearance.

4 Most Common Types of Tiles


Porcelain tiles are known for their water absorption capabilities; they have a water absorption rate of 0.5%, which makes them nearly waterproof.

They are made of finer materials than most other tile types, which is where they get their hardness and density. Both of these factors make them ideal for use on walls and floors in the home and in commercial settings.

They generally come in two categories: unglazed and glazed.


Cement tiles were extremely popular at the turn of the twentieth century, losing popularity only to gain it again in recent years. Today, though, they actually made of ceramic or porcelain but still maintain the authentic appearance of the traditional cement tiles.

Thanks to this change, they are now more versatile, allowing different areas of the house to enjoy the unique patterns and imperfections that come with cement tiles


Terracotta tiles are famous for their warm, rustic appearance. Traditionally, they are hard to work with and prone to cracking as they are generally sun dried instead of kiln dried or hardened.

Today, most terracotta tile manufacturers use a man-made terracotta mix so that the tiles are more durable. They still sport the same rustic charm, though.


Ceramic tiles have been used for thousands of years and even today, the process of manufacturing them remains much the same. They are made of red or white clay, covered in decorative glaze, and then baked in a kiln.

They are durable and easy to clean, making them ideal for bathrooms and kitchens. They also tend to be smaller than most other tile types. Some claim that ceramic tiles can’t be used on floors, but this isn’t true.

Ceramic tiles, although losing the race against porcelain tiles for flooring, absolutely can be used in floors.

Tile FAQ

Do tiles need to be sealed?

Most tiles do benefit from sealing. Incredibly phorus tiles such as those made from natural stone or limestones do need to be sealed indefinitely.

What determines tile prices?

The price of a tile is dependent on what kind of tile it is, how big or small it is, how many are needed, and what company sells the tile in question.

How long does tile last?

Tile longevity depends on what kind of tile it is and where it is placed. Moist areas tend to see more tile turnover than drier areas.

Effective Tips to Make Any Room Appear Bigger

Do you wish you have bigger rooms in your house? This can be easy to resolve if you still have available space where you can build an extension of your home. However, if you don’t have more square footage to fill, you can still implement some strategies to at least make the rooms in your house look bigger. Below are some of the most effective tips:

1.Type of flooring

While multiple styles of flooring can help define sections in your house, they can make your room look smaller. By installing a type of flooring that continuouslyflows from one area of your house to another, you will be able to make visitors feel that these sections are part of a single large space.

If you want to have wood flooring, it is recommended to install wider boards if you have a limited space. Meanwhile, if you opt to use tiles, better install large-format styles because there will be fewer grout lines and the space will look bigger.

2. Light-colored walls

Compared to dark-colored walls, those which have lighter or paler shades of color can make a room seem bigger because they reflect light and the room will look brighter. Keep in mind that different surfaces should have low contrasts, andensure that your walls and floor should blend harmoniously.

3. Strategically-placed windows

Make sure that your windows are placed strategically such that they allow as much natural light as possible to make the room appear bigger. You can also hang curtains high and allow them to fall to the floor to establish an illusion of height.

4. Use mirrors to create an illusion of bigger space

Install mirrors strategically in such a way that they can bounce natural light around the room. One foolproof way to do this is to cover a wall in mirror, but you can also use a few oversized mirrors instead.

5. Install good lighting

During the day, you can take advantage of sunlight to create an illusion of space. Buthow about during the night?It is recommended to set up a wide variety of light sources to keep the room bright after dark. A good option includes slender floor lamps with just a small base so that they can keep the room bright, while having little impact on the floor plan.

6. Choosing the right types of furniture

Overstuffed sofas and bulky pieces of furniture should never be among your options if you want to make a room appear bigger. For the couch, choose one that is slightly elevated at approximately 10 centimeters above the ground. Meanwhile, round-shaped tables save up more space and do not have hard corners that can interrupt traffic flow. It is also recommended to use glass or marble tabletops because they are reflective and light.

Final Thoughts

Can’t afford a bigger house? No problem, it’s just a matter of laying out pieces of furniture effectively, buying the right types of materials, and creating an illusion of wider space. Hopefully, this article has given you some good ideas on how to make any room in your house look bigger than they actually are.

Healthy Habits of a Home Owner

There is a way of life that can be lead for homeowners who care about maintaining the integrity of their habitats for as long as possible. Apart from the sheer principle of wanting to keep up the appearance of a home’s new looks, letting things deteriorate only results in costly renovations, making maintenance as much about practicality as it is about aesthetics.

The best way to maintain a home is to integrate certain habits into your lifestyle. This is possible by only keeping the following things in mind:


Make a habit of looking around the place a lot. Naturally, the best way to do that is to decorate every corner with at least one attractive ornament that will catch your attention. The more pleasing the house is to look at, the more often you spot certain details that need care, all contributing to a well-kept home. Lighting is also an important factor in maintaining a home because, not only does it allow you to see better, but it also prevents against unwanted organic activity that would eat slowly into the fabric of your home.


Every once in a while, even if only once a week, dedicate your time to a certain room or determined area of your house. There is nothing better than giving your home special attention bit by bit as this strategy makes sure you do not miss out on anything. Grab a chair and spend a few minutes contemplating the area around you. Play around with creative ideas while you’re at it and you never know what you might notice. Little things often grow into large problems that prove to be a more of hassle than they need to be.

Special areas in your home such as the kitchen and bathrooms would need extra attention. Any other room with active forces such as water, or extensions that are open to the outdoors, would need greater care on a more regular basis.

Act or Spend

Do not hesitate to act once you do actually spot something that needs your attention. Procrastination is the enemy of your home’s wellbeing and not a minute should be spared to treat an illness. This may involve solving the problem on your own or preventing it from worsening while you work to solve the larger issue. Oftentimes this involves spending. Though it may be difficult to pull money out of your pocket to make a minor change that doesn’t seem urgent, in the long run, it prevents you from withdrawing even larger sums from your bank account.


The greatest thing about creating this sort of mentality is that it affords you the peace of mind you should have in your own home. It also helps to be mindful that spending is a big part of saving and vital in the longevity of a home.

Prevention is the best cure and homes are no exception to this rule. Cultivate the habit of making maintaining your home part of residing in it and will live out its days to the fullest.

Solutions for extending side house

The contiguous extension is the most frequently used constructive solution, as long as we have sufficient ground to implement it. It allows to extend the house quite easily and can be envisaged on one level or with stage to be wedged on existing heights.

It usually involves creating or modifying the openings to ensure the inner connection between the new and the old volume. According to the margin of freedom left by the Local Plan of Urbanism (PLU), one will be able to choose to stick to the existing architectural framework or to stand out from it.

An example of a side house extension

Here, a project of extension of 30 m2 realized in 2012 by the studio Bureau de change  in London. The intervention consisted of bringing together two terraced houses in one dwelling. The extension at the back of the two houses serves as a link between the two buildings. Styled like a large living room , the ground floor opens onto the back garden and now consists of a kitchen center around which revolve a lounge and a dining room.

After the work, the living space of the house went from 250 to 280m2. The cost of the intervention is 350 000 €, but it includes both the construction of the extension and the total renovation of the two terraced houses.

This radical solution is, however, more and more often implemented in cities, where urban density requires turning to the sky to gain living space . The elevation is to add one or more levels to an existing build.

Obviously quite expensive because it assumes access difficulties, either by its height or simply by the storage constraints of materials such as work equipment. It also implies certain precautions of implementation, in particular to make sure that the existing construction is strong enough to support an elevation, and if necessary to provide a reinforcement of foundations. In any case, it is also important to ensure the lightness of the new structure, which is why most of the elevations are made of wood framing .

An example of a home extension by elevation

In this project located in the heart of Paris in the district of Ménilontant, the architect Philippe Berthomier has completely deconstructed the sloped roof of this old artisan workshop, to build a real extra floor. A cube of 50m2 covered with zinc in which is arranged a parental suite. Slightly removed from the first two levels, the project has resulted in a pleasant balcony along the new structure. Realized in a few months, the works also included the complete renovation of this house finally invested by the owners in the summer of 2012. If the whole site was 370 000 €, the work of elevation is 150 000 €.

House Exention: everything you need to know

Too small. This is obviously how everything starts. It’s all the essence of an extension project . Whether you’re already a homeowner or a potential buyer, you need at least one more room or more volume, whether you live in town or in the country, an extension project always responds to the same objective: increase the surface to live.

In which case opt for a house extension?

“We could change houses,” some say. But when it is ideally located, perfectly oriented, that it corresponds to the house of our dreams and that only its surface is a problem? Worse still, when one is attached to the premises and a move would be a tear? Not to mention the hassle inherent in the case: cartons, the sale of his property, bridge loans to the bank, appointments at the notary …

In short, if it’s just a story of place, we must remember that a house is rarely permanently fixed, and that in most configurations, there will be solutions to increase the surface to live.

Some are easier to implement than others and this will play in particular on the cost of the operation. From the simple development of attic to the elevation, the addition of surface to live will not have the same price per m2.

In addition, it should be known that the construction of an extension responds to a complicated financial equation: the smaller the extension, the more it is expensive per m2, but the less m2 is built and the lower the total bill. You follow ? Basically, building 10m2 still costs less than having 30, but not m2, because construction involves fixed costs, regardless of the size of the operation.

However in an uncertain real estate market, this solution more and more acclaimed by the owners. Rather than jeopardize their heritage, it’s an immediate way to value it.

What is a home extension?

By definition, an extension is a construction added to another, the outgrowth of an already existing building . The context is therefore particularly important because it involves implementing the project in an even more marked environment than for a new construction. From an architectural point of view, we can take the party to respect or break with the existing style, according to his tastes and urban and technical possibilities. But for locals, it is imperative that an extension be consistent with the rest of the housing. It is about living this new space as the logical extension of the rest of the housing. This implies certain layout precautions (such as the continuity of paints and floor coverings) to ensure a certain homogeneity inside.

Good news, since 1 st January 2012, the area subject to planning permission for extensions has increased from 20 to 40m2. An extension project of 39m2 is therefore today the subject of a simple declaration of work in the town hall. It is therefore quite simple to implement it, as long as it respects the local rules of urban planning (materials, colors, height of construction).

On the other hand, regardless of its size, since the extension brings the total surface (SHOB) of your house to more than 170m2, not only the building permit is obligatory and recourse to an architect is obligatory.

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