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Friday, March 28, 2014

NARI Evening of Excellence 2014 | Key Residential

We are excited for tonight's NARI Evening of Excellence hosted at the Marriott New Orleans. Project Manager Evan Ratcliff will be in attendance representing Key Residential for the 2014 National CotY Awards, hoping to take home an award for the Hollow Way Whole Home Renovation 

The awards ceremony is also available via webcast tonight by logging on at

           About NARI: The National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI) is the only trade association dedicated solely to the remodeling industry.  The Association, which represents member companies nationwide—comprised of 63,000 remodeling contractors— is “The Voice of the Remodeling Industry.”™ To learn more about membership, visit or contact national headquarters, based in Des PlainesIll., at (847) 298-9200.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Revisiting A Remodel | Key Residential

One thing we pride ourselves on at Key Residential is our ability to develop long lasting relationships with our clients that result in word-of-mouth referrals, as well as additional projects in their homes for years to come. 

Master Bath Reno 2013
Master Bath Reno 2013
Having completed a Master Bath Remodel (L & R) in 2013 for repeat clients, we've recently been able to revisit other areas of the home that were completed back in 2006 (yes, that's before the advent of the iPhone, gasp!) and get the homeowner's feedback. 

So did the early Key work stand the test of time, or has the seven year itch crept up prompting the homeowners to try something new? 

Keep reading to find out...

Original Kitchen Remodel Process- 2005-2006
Photo by LAIR Architectural + Interior Photography (C) 2014

The original remodel, completed in 2006included a 5' expansion towards the front of the home, creating room for a new built-in display cabinet in the dining portion and a large arched window  with  storage beneath the bench seat.  

The rearranged eat-in kitchen features updated paint (farewell wallpaper), tiled flooring in a pinwheel pattern, custom painted cabinetry centered around a dark stained island, integrated appliances, tiled backsplash, and granite counters. 

The vaulted ceiling is made even more prominent by the addition of beadboard, beams, and molding details, while the operable arched windows and french doors bring in natural light and allow access to the outdoors.

Photo by LAIR Architectural + Interior Photography (C) 2014

And of course the answer to our previous question is YES, the original renovation has aged quite well, looking just as good today (as shown in the recent photos) as it did when first completed over eight years ago.

The carefully chosen, timeless finishes and the great attention to detail that went into the original design, plus regular maintenance and a little TLC from the homeowners, have allowed this kitchen to withstand the test of time and become the true heart of this home. 

They enjoy hosting multi-generational family dinners, with grandkids grabbing games from the bench seat storage, parents gathering around the island to converse, and great-grandma relaxing at the dining table. 

Photo by LAIR Architectural + Interior Photography (C) 2014

So, after revisiting this kitchen remodel quite a few years later, this project will go down in the Key Residential books as a resounding success

And not because the finishes and fixtures have remained intact. It is in fact our unofficial GC duty to help homeowners update/renovate as often as their hearts desire and budget will allow. Let's face it, we'd be out of business if everyone just decided to stick with what they've already got.

Nor is it because the homeowners graciously opted to work with Key Residential on another project in a different area of their home (though we are always appreciative when that happens). 

This project goes in the win column because after all these years, the homeowners are still in love with their kitchen, perhaps more than when it was first completed, and have created many a memory gathered around this very island. And we really can't ask for much more than that!


If you've seen something you like, or have ideas for a home renovation of your own, contact us to discuss your upcoming remodel project!


Friday, March 7, 2014

Landscape & Outdoor Living Trends for 2014

Builder Online recently put together a list of 15 Hot Outdoor Design Trends based on a survey by the American Society of Landscape Architects, who were asked to predict top trends for 2014. Check out the results below!

Gardens/Landscapes were rated to likely be somewhat to very popular by 94% of respondents. 

Key features to include: 
       Low maintenance
       Using native plants
       Fountains or ornamental water features
       Food/veggie gardens (includes vineyards/orchards)
       Xeriscaping or dry gardens 

Left: Synthetic turf reduces the need for costly maintenance. 
    Right: Louisiana Sugar Kettle repurposed as a fountain.

Next on the list were Outdoor Living Spaces (kitchens, entertainment areas) rated by 92% of landscape professionals to be popular for 2014.

Key features to include:
       Seating/dining areas 
       Fire pits/fireplaces
       Installed seating (benches, ledges, etc) 

Left: Lighting adds drama and allows you to enjoy your outdoor space anytime. Right: Multiple seating areas can accommodate dining, lounging and entertainment.

And the third most popular outdoor design element was Outdoor Recreation (pools, spas, tennis courts) with 76% of respondents predicting popularity in 2014. 

Key features to include:
       Decorative water elements (ornamental or 
       splash pools, waterfalls, grottos, etc.)
       Spa features (hot tub, Jacuzzi, whirlpool,  sauna)
       Swimming pools

Top: The outdoor kitchen cabana opens to a stunning poolscape with stone wall and waterfall feature.   Bottom: The existing pool was updated with a new surround, including a ledgestone and glass tile water feature.

Sustainable Elements on the Rise

2014 may also end up being a bit greener (landscape pun- check) with the integration of sustainable planting and design elements, the highest ranked of which are below. 
  • Native/adapted drought-tolerant plants - 88.0% 
  • Drip/water-efficient irrigation - 84.5%
  • Permeable paving - 78.9%
  • Reduced lawn - 72.6%
  • Recycled materials - 65.1%
  • Rainwater/graywater harvesting - 60.6%

Want to know more? 

You can find the source article here on Builder Online or check out the ASLA full survey results here