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Dreams turn into reality |

Dreams turn into reality

For the majority of us, our dream kitchen is usually imagined as a glittering showplace, filled with granite islands stretching toward a faraway horizon and sparkling appliances that instantly make you a Michelin chef.

Truth is, unless you’re rich enough to be able to buy your home complete with these dream kitchens and bathrooms, remodeling is the affordable option.


This is where the experts come into play and the more expert help you can get to help you imagine your new dream spaces, the better your options will be on choices and cost control.

“Every kitchen or bathroom renovation is different and unique,” said Barrett Rivera, owner of Rivera’s Flooring, Kitchens and More, based in Brooksville, Florida. “Every customer’s needs are different and I customize every bathroom or kitchen according to their tastes.”

Rivera, and his wife Shawnda, have built their business on quality work, good customer service and word of mouth recommendations. Their business showroom is located at 19239 Cortez Blvd. in Brooksville Florida, and spreads over 4,000 square feet displaying various styles of kitchens with high-end appliances, beautiful tile, quality accessories, marble — including Carrera and Travertine – as well as carpet and vinyl flooring.

“We started off with a 2,000 sq. ft. showroom about 2 years ago,” said Rivera. “But because there are so many different styles, fixtures and price ranges, we recently expanded by another 2,000 sq. ft.

Rivera’s wife, Shawnda said, “So many people want to visualize a kitchen in place complete with appliances and those extra special accessories like faucets, spice racks and coffee stations. They like to touch and feel the different textures on counters and back splashes, so we invested $100,000 in extra showroom space to display several styles of kitchens and bathrooms for customers to experience,” she said.

The average cost of a bathroom or kitchen renovation, including demolition and removal of the old fixtures is difficult to determine. Generally, new kitchens and bathrooms don’t come cheap. Does the remodel require moving walls, installing new floors, high-end appliances and fixtures? And, if you own an older home, there’s no way to know what might be found when you open up that wall.

Cost depends on so many factors especially if the footprint of the old kitchen or bathroom has to be reconfigured. There’s also the question of whether permitting with the local authority is necessary. Finding that good contractor that will work with you in reducing costs across the board yet still providing quality work is gold.

Whether building or remodeling, there’s a step-by-step process that occurs in sequence and an experienced contractor can make that happen smoothly.

“Although every kitchen or bathroom remodel is unique,” said Rivera, “we still have to go through a process that includes planning, demolition, installation and restoration.”

Figuring out the best layout, style and finish depends on the homeowners’ tastes, budget and circumstances. For example, how is the space used? Does someone spend a lot of time in the kitchen cooking, or does the homeowner host frequent dinner parties? Hiring a contractor like Rivera will take you through this process painlessly.

Once you know the process, the next step is to decide your style and materials.

“This is the most exciting part for customers,” said Rivera. Choosing the color, style, layout and materials they desire makes their kitchen or bathroom come to life.”

When pricing a remodel, Rivera explained that he always plans for unforeseen expenses.

“Demolition time is when plumbing and electrical issues crop up,” he said. “That’s when we know exactly what issues may arise and even when the space is cleared and ready to receive flooring and cabinets, there are many more issues that can emerge.

“Walls may be out of square, floors and ceilings may not be level, said Rivera. “Sometimes these issues are not known until we’re actually installing the cabinets.

Then there’s the planning to be considered.

“Trying to fit too much into the space available might bring disappointment,” Rivera said. “Try to be realistic about what is required in your space.”

Ordering special cabinets and tile, fixtures can takes weeks to deliver and sometimes, the suppliers deliver the wrong materials.

“All of this is built into the schedule,” said Rivera. “The average timeline for a new kitchen or bathroom is approximately 2 weeks once all the choices on style and materials are finalized and no last minute changes,” said Rivera. “But things can and do happen, and we have to be prepared so we can work according to schedule.”

When considering a potential remodeling job, Rivera advises his customers to think about the added value to their home.

“Updating a kitchen and bathroom will reap rewards years later at resale time,” said Rivera. “Any homeowner thinking about remodeling should think longterm. No crazy colors, and only pick stuff that’s classy and timeless so that 10 years down the road, your home is attractive and sales worthy,” he said.

“We regularly visit kitchen and bathroom shows and conferences so we can keep abreast of current trends,” added Shawnda.

Rivera’s Flooring, Kitchens and More is not just about remodeling kitchens and bathrooms. Rivera’s is an experienced contractor for any kind of project — small or large and also a fully licensed to build up to three stories high. Rivera’s also designs and constructs outdoor fireplaces and kitchens, as well as outdoor brick pavers.

“I recommend coming to our showroom to see our kitchens and bathrooms,” said Shawnda. “We can also bring samples to your home and provide a free in-home design consultation.

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