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Home Improvement

6 value-adding upgrades for your home

(BPT) - Faced with a tight U.S. housing market, many people are looking to improve the looks, comfort and value of homes they might otherwise sell. Renovating with hardwood is an excellent way of achieving these goals.

“Beautifully milled and finished hardwood provides a unique range of colors and textures that no other material truly matches,” says Linda Jovanovich, of the American Hardwood Information Center. “And of course, wood is amazingly durable. Improvements like new oak flooring, walnut paneling, maple built-ins or cherry mouldings are not only stylish but also long-lasting additions to any residence.”

Here are six hardwood upgrades worth considering for your home.

Invest in solid hardwood flooring 

Photo courtesy Armstrong Flooring, Inc.

Solid-wood planks have always been the gold standard for residential flooring. You can increase a hardwood floor’s aesthetic impact with a characterful finish, as Armstrong Flooring does in this dining room. Varying in width and length, the “Bark Brown” hickory boards retain saw marks and distinctive knots for a charmingly rustic effect.

Install hardwood moulding and trimwork 

Photo courtesy Susan Gilmore

Decorative millwork can turn bland interiors into memorable spaces. Minnesota–based architect Meriwether Felt installed stained-cherry mouldings, trims and casings in this master bath renovation. “The stained wood warms up the bathroom and provides richness. The client asked for a luxurious yet elegant feeling, and cherry fit the bill perfectly.”

Maximize built-in hardwood storage 

Photo courtesy Peter Rymwid

Built-in hardwood solutions tailored for specific storage needs are welcome additions to any home. The perennial problem of where to store wine, for instance, is elegantly addressed in this New Jersey kitchen designed by Ivee Fromkin Interiors. Located for maximum accessibility, the grid of painted-poplar cubbies also creates strong visual interest.

Warm up walls with hardwood planks and panels 

Photo courtesy Andrew Pogue

Cladding blank walls with hardwood planks or paneling can bring warmth, color and texture to otherwise featureless interiors. Cornerstone Architects raise the decorative temperature of this contemporary Texas bedroom by turning the wall behind the headboard into a magnificent expanse of burnished walnut boards and surrounding the flat-screen TV with white-oak paneling.

Replace inferior doors with solid-hardwood styles 

Photo courtesy Matt Silk

Many American homes feature painted hollow-core interior doors that don’t stand up well to wear and tear. Replacing them with well-constructed, solid-hardwood models, like the crisply tailored stained-oak closet doors that Ink Architecture & Design installed in this serene bedroom, can help transform tired, nondescript spaces into handsome show places.

Refresh your kitchen with hardwood cabinetry 

Photo courtesy Sterling Mason

Kitchen makeovers are a very popular home improvement, with new hardwood cabinetry at the top of the list. Created by Henrybuilt kitchen systems for a luxury condominium development in New York City, these solid walnut cabinets are simple and elegant, allowing the natural beauty of the millwork to take center stage. Visit www.hardwoodinfo.com for more about upgrading your home with American hardwoods.

 
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