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One Portland, Oregon interior designer has found an effective way to fund projects to eliminate the epidemic of homelessness in Oregon – because nonprofits need profits, after all.

Her system is similar to when retailers ask shoppers to round up and give the change to charity. She is adding a 1% line item to each client invoice as a way to generate funds for nonprofits. And other local interior designers are joining her.

Oregon struggles with homelessness rates despite having one of the highest state tax burdens in the country. The interior designer decided to look to the real estate and home furnishing industry for help with the problem of homelessness. She found that out of all of her clients, only one person opted out of the 1% charge.

The program began in 2019. The One Percent Project is now generating income for nine Portland organizations and state organizations that work to alleviate homelessness. The Community Warehouse is similar to the Salvation Army that allows people to transition from homelessness to obtain free items.

The One Percent Project has received a $150,000 grant, which was used to purchase a new van to make deliveries. How did that number grow to be so large? In 2019, all aspects of the home improvement industry became involved – plumbers, architects, real estate agents, contractors, home improvement suppliers, more than a dozen interior-related businesses in the Pacific Northwest area became involved in the project.

Are you interested in the types of interior design projects you can do to improve the look of your home?

Types of Interior Design Projects

Update the Heating System

Is your home currently being heated using a boiler system? Consider a combination boiler. It has two functions. It provides heat and hot water.

If you decide to install a new boiler, it is recommended that you upgrade the radiators, especially if they were installed prior to 2000. Heating professionals will recommend that a new set of radiators be installed, as it is worth the investment.

Add a Room

If the budget allows, consider adding a room such as a four-season porch, a new wing for a family room, or an extra bedroom. Determine your construction budget first, interview at least three contractors before deciding on the one you will use.

Update Kitchen Countertop

Are you weary of looking at that old laminate countertop? Would you like the ease of care new marble countertops, quartz, or granite countertop would provide? If you are unsure of what type of countertop to install in your kitchen, you can ask the advice of an interior designer to get a professional opinion. Most home improvement stores have a designer on hand to answer questions for the convenience of their customers. This is not an inexpensive update, so you want to be sure of your choice.

Paint the Interior

One relatively inexpensive way to improve the interior of your home is by changing the paint color. There are residential painting companies that provide this service if you are not ready, willing, or able to do it yourself. All you have to do is choose the colors you want. If a total house repaint is what you are considering, make sure that all the colors you select blend. You need to make sure that if you can see the interior of more than one room when looking down the hall, for example, the colors need to complement each other. There are designers available in retail stores that can advise on a color scheme if you are unsure how to proceed choosing one.

Remodel the Bathroom

Remodeling the bathroom is a perfect way to add value, function, and beauty to your home. Professionals will tell you that a bathroom or kitchen remodel will enable you to recoup the cost of the project if you decide to sell. Plumbers can advise you on the best type of fixtures to purchase. They know the market for plumbing fixtures and know reliability, value, and quality. A beautiful bathroom vanity, tile tub surround, and bright lighting all make for a functional space you and your family will enjoy.

Update Electrical System and Lighting

Are there spaces in your home that need additional lighting? A dark hallway, the entryway, or perhaps in a closet? Employ an electrical contractor to install some new fixtures or possibly update your electrical service. If the service in your home is outdated, you may want to consider upgrading your current service panel. Upgrading an existing service panel to 200 amps, the industry required minimum standard, costs between $850 and $1,150.

Redesign the Interior

Have you been looking at new homes because you are tired of your current home’s closed-in spaces? Consider redesigning the interior. Have some walls removed to expand areas to give the illusion of more square footage. Or you can cover up your basement’s concrete floors with something cozier. An interior designer or interior contractor can help with a new design that can make your home more functional.

Improve the Water Quality in your Home

When water flows from the water treatment systems to the tap in your home, many factors in your household plumbing and the distribution system can affect your water quality. Here are a few tips for improving the water quality in your home.

  • Run cold water taps for two minutes prior to using the water for cooking and drinking. If the water hasn’t been used for several hours, it sits in the pipes, causing water quality to decline. Other household activities will allow water from the distribution system to flush the lines, such as laundry, flushing the toilet, showering or bathing, and running the dishwasher.
  • Do not use hot tap water for cooking or drinking. Hot water dissolves contaminants but may contain bacteria, metals, and sediment that can build up in the water heater. Household sources can cause lead to be released in your drinking water. Only use cold water for drinking or cooking.
  • Routinely replace filter cartridges in your water filters. Metals and bacteria can build up in the cartridges of the filter.
  • Old household plumbing is a potential lead source and should be replaced. Install plumbing with galvanized copper pipes and plumbing fixtures that are lead-free, containing no more than 0.25 percent lead. After installation, flush the cold water faucets once a day for three days, for at least five minutes.
  • Faucet aerators should be routinely cleaned and replaced as needed. Metals and sediments collect in the screen at the tip of the faucets and can affect water quality.
  • Drain your water heater annually, as metals, sediment, and bacteria can build up in the water heater tank. This will impact both water pressure and household water quality.

Redecorate your Interior

There are some secrets that interior designers use when decorating. Use these tips to improve your home and make it the beautiful showcase of your dreams.

  • Designers say that the first rule of decorating is that you can break almost all of the other rules. It is essential that the décor of your home reflects your personality and living style. It does not need to follow a conventional practice.
  • Consider your ceilings. They are the most forgotten space in the room. People typically think of only the walls, then the furniture, then the floor. But they rarely think of what is above them. Ceilings reflect the natural light that comes in through the windows.
  • Add a pop of red or another bright color. You do not need to love red or other bright colors to appreciate it in small doses. Just a hint of color is enough to call attention to it and make a room more attractive.
  • Understand that less is more. Be careful not to overaccessorize every corner and space in the room, especially when its function is simple.
  • You can add life to a room or space with greenery. Add flowers, plants, and real trees to your decoration, as it will also help improve the quality of indoor air naturally.
  • Bring your own experiences into your rooms. That is what makes your home uniquely yours. Your personal possessions that you have showcased revealed your personality, achievements, and adventures.
  • Have fun while you’re decorating. Don’t be afraid to try something you have never tried before. It can always be changed. Furniture can be rearranged, and walls can be repainted. With home décor, purchase something new you feel will add to the beauty of your room.
  • Your home needs to be livable. It doesn’t matter what the personal style of the room is. It is essential that the room is comfortable to be in. Remember that a well-designed home is one that is functional, comfortable, and beautiful.
  • Lighting is an essential element in any environment. Purchase a unique lamp to supplement the lighting in a favorite room. Beautiful lighting will add warmth and glow to your surroundings and make the space a joy to be in.
  • Don’t forget to accessorize. They are the soul of a room. They tie all the décor together to give your space a finished appearance. Accessories are another way to add a personal touch to your space. They often tell a story of where you have been and where your interests lie.
  • Let these secrets provide you with the inspiration you need to make your home beautiful.

How to Choose an Interior Designer

If you decide that making changes to your home’s interior is more than you can handle, consider hiring an interior designer to help you with your project.

Finding an interior designer that can make your vision come true will not work if there is no chemistry between you. You also need to like the same kind of things. It is not enough to like your interior designer’s style. It is a personal process, and it is vital to work with someone who understands your style, is easy to work with, and can see your “vision.”

  • You need to be honest with the designer and yourself about what you need and want in terms of service. Do you want everything from soup to nuts, or do you want someone to place orders for you when you have designed it? There is nothing wrong with this way or the variations in between. But you will get better results if you start out on the same page.
  • Work out your budget. Some people will not reveal their budget until they are given an estimate. It is much easier for a designer to know from the start what they have to work with so they can choose fabrics and other tools of their trade in the most economical way.
  • Let your designer be the guide. Don’t instruct them on what is to be done. They are the professionals and while what you want your home to feel and look like is important, let your designer guide the process. That is why you hired her or him.
  • You must respond to emails, estimates, and invoices promptly, or the deadlines for project completion will not be met. Things that are on hold will no longer be on hold, in-stock items will become out of stock, and you will be faced with long lead times. You will not incur these delays if you are prompt in your responses to your designer.
  • Choose a designer with whom you have total confidence and in whose taste and judgment you trust. You want to be working with someone who chose a weird lamp that essentially turns that mediocre space into a stunning room. Learn to trust your designer. Even though you may question some of his or her decisions, you will find in the end they were the correct decisions.

No matter whether you decide to remodel, renovate, or redesign your entire home or just a single room, hiring the proper people to guide you along the way will ensure a beautiful result that you are sure to be happy with for years to come.

Teng

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About Me

I've seen a lot of cooking, home improvement and crafting shows and, let me tell you, they make things look way easier than they are. Most people really can’t remodel their own kitchen, paint a wall mural or whip up a gourmet meal in an afternoon. I’m here to share my ideas and guidance about home and family--things I've learned through trial and error. I've already made the mistakes so you don’t have to! Just don’t ask about the kitchen cabinet refinishing project that went awry.
March 2021
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