Three Common and Costly Kitchen Remodeling Mistakes to Avoid


Remodeling a kitchen can add to the value of your home and make it easier to sell, especially if the space is populated with aging appliances and old counter-tops. That being said, if you are contemplating a kitchen remodeling project as part of the plan to sell your home, there are also several commonly made mistakes that can turn costly and potentially make your home harder to sell.

These mistakes include:

• Doing an “Architectural Digest” remodel – The value of your home and the return on investment for a high-end remodeling project will be limited by the comparable prices of homes in your neighborhood, also known as “comps”. Before starting a remodeling project, find out where your home currently stands in value versus other comps in the area. The discrepancy in prices can reveal a lot about how much your home will appreciate in value after a remodel; an older home that is deeply discounted from other comps might benefit from the addition of new appliances and other upgrades while one that is priced close to other comps probably won’t appreciate as much from a kitchen project.
• Trend-following – The nature of most trends is that they will be replaced by newer trends after a relatively short period of time. While kitchen trends can cover numerous design aspects, they are most commonly related to the selection of specific colors for cabinetry and appliances. Trying to sell a home with a kitchen style that has gone out of fashion can actually make for a tougher sale as the new buyers negotiate with an eye on getting rid of “old” appliances.
• Personalizing the kitchen – While you may love a kitchen that looks and feels like diner, not all of your prospective buyers will. Much like going with trendy appliance colors, a “themed” kitchen may not add a lot of value, unless you find home buyers that truly appreciate your vision.

The process of planning a kitchen remodeling project for a home sale is a different than one where owners plan on staying for the long term. For the most cost-efficient remodeling project, new appliances as well as the overall design should stay fairly basic to afford maximal appreciation while appealing to as wide an audience as possible.


Your Major Appliances: One Energy Saving on Habit on Each One that can Lower Utility Bills

Major appliances, even when a household has installed ENERGY STAR rated products, can account for 20 to 30 percent of a household’s energy bills. In temperate climates where heating and cooling are not required on a regular basis, major appliances typically consume an even greater percentage of total energy usage. Fortunately, there are energy savings habits related to each major appliance in the typical household that can reduce energy consumption even further.

* The refrigerator – Keeping temperatures too low in the refrigerator and the freezer can result in a motor that consumes far more energy than is necessary. The optimal temperature for the refrigerator compartment is 38 degrees while the temperature level in freezer should be maintained at 4 degrees. These temperatures can maintain freshness while consuming energy efficiently.
* The dishwasher – The heated drying cycle consumes energy unnecessarily, especially if there isn’t a need to pull dry dishes out of the machine at a specific time. Instead, use the air dry option which uses air blown by fans to dry the wash load.
* The washing machine – Opt for cold water washes whenever possible. In a hot water wash 90 percent of the energy consumed goes to heating water. Defaulting to hot cycles has become unnecessary as advancements in cold water washing detergents can now yield the same results as those of energy consuming hot water cycles. The advanced cleaning capabilities using cold water and cold water detergents now mean that hot water cycles need to only be used when greasy or oily stains need to be removed.

Each of these actions can capitalize on improved efficiencies of today’s appliances. By turning them into habits, you’ll be able to optimize your savings on a monthly basis.

Blu-ray 101

Blu-ray is the name of the optical disc platform that has been designed with the intention of replacing the widely used format of digital video discs (DVDs). The technology gets its name from the blue laser that reads the information on the disc, at a rate which occurs at a higher storage speed than DVDs that are read by red lasers.

The advantages of Blu-ray include:

* Better picture qualityBlu-ray’s better picture quality starts with its increased resolution of 1,920 x 1,080 versus the standard DVD resolution of 720 x 480. The higher number of pixels available in the Blu-ray format results in far greater detail and picture clarity. The Blu-ray format also has deeper colors and enhanced contrasts.

* Better sound quality – Higher resolution audio formats deliver a richer sound experience that can rival movie theater audio.

* The Blu-ray format optimizes HDTV – Owners of HDTV screens can only optimize the picture from discs with the Blu-ray format due to the fact that DVDs are not designed with enough pixels for the display screen. Trying to integrate a DVD with a high resolution screen can result in a lower picture quality than that of a screen that doesn’t have HD technology.

* DVDs work in Blu-ray players – This avoids the situation where a new technology renders the one being replaced as unusable (VHS tapes versus DVD’s, for example). Being able to play DVDs means that a new Blu-ray owner doesn’t have to start from scratch in terms of a movie collection and can continue to play DVDs while adding Blu-ray movies.

As a relatively new technology, buying a Blu-ray player will still cost more than the DVD version. That being said, enhanced viewing experience is the name of the game for virtually all new technology in this category, which places Blu-ray in the middle of the next generation of video-related electronics.

Considerations for Prosumers before Going Appliance Shopping

The term “prosumer” is applied to a growing group of consumers who have reached a level of skill, sophistication or wherewithal that bridges the knowledge gap between professionals in a specific field and the consumers that buy non-commercial products related to that area of interest. While prosumers typically purchase non-commercial products as well, their purchases generally gravitate toward high end products that are similar to those used by professionals.

One of the fastest growing sets of prosumers is in the field of cooking, an area that gets regular exposure on television through chef competitions, etc. If you consider yourself a cooking prosumer, here are a few factors to consider before going appliance shopping for your kitchen:

* How your kitchen will be configured – Professionally styled appliances take up considerably more linear space than standard versions. As a rule of thumb, you should expect pro-style appliances to require about twice as much linear space than their standard counterparts. You should also factor in the possibility that larger sized appliances will influence cabinetry and storage configurations as well.

* The weight of pro-style appliances – Increased appliance size translates to heavier weight, which may require additional structural support. Manufacturers are constantly seeking to decrease the weight of these pieces and an increasing number of them do not require the support of custom built cement bases. Still, prosumers should find out whether the intended flooring locations can support the new appliances before it’s too late.

* Ventilation – Professionally styled ranges and cooktops require 8 to 10 times the amount of ventilation as standard versions to remove the increased heat. Anything less than that and the home runs the risk of being overtaken by high temperatures, smoke or steam/vapors. Another issue is that the added ventilation sucks so much air out of the house that it causes other risks. These situations can be avoided by installing a unit that equalizes the air pressure between the outside and inside of the home. One way to avoid the ventilation and air pressure issues is to go with an induction-style cooktop, which uses electromagnetic technology to heat the cookware. These burners offer high efficiency and energy savings but are priced at the highest end of prosumer-related kitchen appliances.

* Additional options – Any new item or feature that gets shown on the variety of cooking shows has the possibility of becoming the next hot thing. One feature that has had some staying power is the placement of a faucet in the wall above the cooktop that allows for pots to be filled in place, saving the cook/chef the work of carrying a big pot full of water across the kitchen. The extra faucet also eliminates the need to clear the sink before filling the pot.

Taking these factors into consideration before purchasing your appliances can help to set your budget and determine the best path toward getting your pro-style kitchen set up for form and function in the most efficient manner possible. With your kitchen set up to your specifications, you’ll be ready to work like a pro.

East Coast Appliance and Electronics’ Witchduck Builder Store Announces Major Renovations in the Works

East Coast Appliance and Electronics is pleased to announce major renovations that are in the works for its Witchduck Builder Store. The renovation plan also includes moving the store down the street to its new address: 117 South Witchduck Rd., Virginia Beach, Va. 23462. The move to the new location will also nearly triple the size of the sales floor from the current 2500 square feet to 7000 square feet. The move and renovations are expected to be completed by January 1st, 2013.

Renovations at the Builder Direct store include:

• 15 vignettes featuring refrigerators, dishwashers, cooktops and wall ovens in a variety of configurations, designs and styles – Each vignette will be created with kitchen appliances from name brands including Fisher and Paykel, GE Monogram, Viking, and more.

• A Manhattan warehouse look and feel – The new design will feature the open architecture of a Manhattan warehouse with raw finishes and an industrial affect.

• An expanded inventory facilitated by the near tripling of the square footage of the sales floor.

The Builder Direct store, an offshoot from the East Coast Appliance and Electronics superstores, caters to architects, builders, and general contractors with personal service committed to providing the best solutions for any type of kitchen or electronics configuration. The services and solutions include professional deliveries of electronics and appliances, as well as flawless installation. These customized solutions and services also come with low price guarantees backed by East Coast Appliance and Electronics.

East Coast Appliance and Builder Direct can guarantee these low prices based on the company’s buying power as well as its membership in the Nationwide Marketing Group. Nationwide’s membership is comprised of over 3000 independent storeowners selling appliances, furniture, electronics and installation services with combined revenues of over $12 billion. The accumulated buying power of the members inside this group leads to low unit pricing on appliances and electronics that puts East Coast Appliance and Builder Direct in a position where those low prices can be passed on and guaranteed to its customers.

“The new Builder Direct Store will be a great extension of East Coast Appliance and Electronics’ commitment to providing the best prices, products and services”, said Rob Nicholson, president and owner of East Coast Appliance & Electronics. He added, “We are very excited about being able to offer our commercial customers continued exceptional service, an expanded inventory, and everyday low prices at our new location.”

In addition to the Builder Direct store in Virginia Beach, East Coast Appliance & Electronics operates superstores in Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, and Newport News, Virginia. The company also offers parts and service through a separate location in Virginia Beach.
East Coast Appliance & Electronics is the largest independently owned appliance and electronics operation in Virginia, offering all the major appliance and electronics brands. For more information on the Builder Direct store, visit:

Press release distributed by Gervais Group. See original press release at

Convenience, Energy and Time Savings with Whirlpool Duet Washers and Dryers

Whirlpool Duet Washers and Dryers are built with so many features that the only thing missing may be a technology that moves wash loads from the washer to the dryer. Even there, the Duet Washer is engineered with a new feature called “Dynamic Venting Technology”, which runs fans and tumbles clothes for up to 12 hours once the wash cycle is completed. While it doesn’t automatically put the wash load in the dryer, this technology can dry a small wash load without ever moving it to the dryer.

Additional features of the Duet Washer include:

Precision Dispense Ultra – One of the new features of Whirlpool Duet Washers, this technology assesses the size of the load being washed and allocates the appropriate amounts of detergent, bleach, softeners, etc. On average, this feature saves 10% on wash-related additives while reducing wear on fabrics by not over-using cleaning solutions. Depending on average wash load sizes, the dispenser can hold enough detergent for 12 to 36 wash cycles.
NSF certification for removing allergens and bacteria – Duet Washers are certified by the National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) for running at temperatures that eliminate allergens and bacteria for the cleanest wash loads possible.
Eco Boost – Eco Boost technology regulates water temperatures to optimize washing efficiency while saving energy.

Whirlpool Duet Dryers have their share of features that deliver convenience and savings as well.
These features include:

Advanced Moisture Sensing – This new technology tracks the temperature and dampness/dryness of the load in the dryer and stops the cycle when the desired level of dryness is achieved, saving drying time and energy.
Wrinkle Shield – After the completion of the dry cycle, the Wrinkle Shield feature continues to steam and tumble the load in the dryer for over an hour and a half to keep the load from getting wrinkled, eliminating the need for ironing.
Eco Boost – This feature combines higher spin speeds and lower temperatures when appropriate to dry loads more efficiently.

Constant innovation at Whirlpool results in products that are consistently in the top of their class. The new Whirlpool Duet Washers and Dryers follow in that tradition with never before seen conveniences and savings in energy usage, time and money. For more information, visit:

The Three Things Whirlpool Dealers Wish You Knew

When you’ve got something good, you want to tell people about it and Whirlpool dealers want you to know about their ranges, refrigerators and dishwashers. Whether you are doing a complete refurbish or replacing a single appliance, Whirlpool has products that deliver great performance while complementing the overall design and appearance of any kitchen.

Whirlpool offers a wide variety of ranges that make cooking easy, save time, and save energy while looking great. These ovens are packed with features including:

Many of Whirlpool’s ranges offer large capacity ovens – Having an oven that doesn’t restrict the meal size means you’ll be able to create any number of different meals whether you’re cooking for two or for your extended family.
Easy convection cooking – Whirlpool takes the mystery out of convection cooking with a feature that converts regular cooking temperatures to their equivalent in convection cooking.
Fast preheating – Whirlpool puts all the heating elements in its ranges to work to preheat at 25% faster than normal ovens.

Whirlpool refrigerators come in a variety of sizes and styles to make them at home in any kitchen. Optional features include:

FreshFlow technology – This intelligent technology monitors and regulates the environment in the refrigerator to keep food fresh for 25% longer than other refrigerators.
Select models that set the standard for energy efficiency – Many of Whirlpool’s refrigerators are ENERGY STAR rated, meaning they’ll also save money on your energy bills.
Adaptive Defrost – This technology keeps frozen foods tasting great while saving 12% in energy costs.

Whirlpool dishwashers can save time by eliminating the need for pre-scrubbing pots, pans, and dishes while turning amazingly clean wash loads. Features include:

PowerScour – The PowerScour technology uses 40 jets to get rid of baked and/or dried on foods without a pre-soak or pre-scrub.
Sensor Cycle – This feature monitors the load to ensure that the right amounts of water and energy are used to get silverware, dishes and cookware clean.
Energy Savings – These are the most energy efficient dishwashers in the category.

So now you know what Whirlpool dealers want you to know about Whirlpool kitchen products. For more information, visit:

Whirlpool Top Load Washers that are Gentle on Clothes and the Environment

The new line of Whirlpool top load washers are designed to be gentle on clothes and the environment while delivering wash loads that are cleaner than ever. Built with a new suite of upgrades and intelligent technological innovations, these washers have been engineered to offer the highest levels of convenience as well as savings of time, energy and money. While these benefits are being realized, the new Whirlpool top load washers, known as the Cabrio line, also run a gentle yet extremely efficient wash cycle.

Powered by “6th Sense” technology, savings start before the wash load is started with “Precision Dispense”, which measures the size of the wash load and then determines the best levels for water, detergent, softeners, and other washing additives. In addition to using less water, this feature also ensures that wash items are not exposed to higher levels of detergent, bleach, etc. than is necessary. To provide the cleanest wash possible, washing begins with a jet spray of water and detergent that penetrates stains early in the cycle to ensure their removal.

Additional savings are realized with Whirlpool’s H2Low system, which maximizes cleaning with lower water usage than competing washers.

The Eco Boost feature maintains water temperatures throughout the wash cycle, which saves energy and keeps wash items from being exposed to excessive water temperatures.

To remove bacteria and allergens such as bacteria, dust, pollen, etc., Whirlpool top load washers are certified by the Nation Sanitation Foundation (NSF). The certification from the NSF recognizes the fact that Whirlpool wash loads are run at hot enough temperatures for time frames that are just long enough to remove allergens, resulting wash items that are far cleaner than those done non-NSF certified washing machines.

To run Whirlpool top load washers at the quietest level possible, a suspension system has been incorporated into these machines that decreases noise from vibration, even with loads where balancing is an issue.

To maximize savings in the laundry room, these washers can be combined with Whirlpool’s Cabrio line of high efficiency dryers. According to estimates, this pairing can save thousands of dollars over the lifetime of the machines. For more information on Whirlpool top load washers, visit: