How to find the perfect tile for your remodeling project

perfect tile for remodeling project

When it comes to remodeling a bathroom or kitchen, there’s no denying that picking the right tile is extremely important.  From backsplash to flooring, it can complement other selections in a subtle manner or be a key focal point in the design of your project.  With so many tile choices and infinite combinations, how do you pick the right one? The best answer – work with a knowledgeable professional who listens and can show you options tailored to fit your tastes and budget.  One component of TriFection’s turnkey remodeling service is our team of selections experts who do this for our clients every day.

Narrow the playing field. With all of the tile colors, shapes and sizes, we often find that new clients who’ve gone shopping on their own for inspiration leave the tile store feeling overwhelmed. TriFection’s approach to selections is that we begin with the materials that offer the fewest number of choices and build from there.  For instance, the first selection we ask our clients to make is the wood species for their custom cabinets because the options are relatively limited in number and distinctive in appearance.  From there, they will choose the style of the cabinet fronts along with a stained or painted finish.  Next comes the countertop selection, which is typically granite or quartz.  Now, we are ready to choose tile that complements the selections already made.  With a general style and color scheme taking shape, the universe of possible tile choices naturally becomes smaller (and far less overwhelming).

img_8954Understand functionality. A tile isn’t just a tile – there are many types of tile.  Common types include ceramic, porcelain, natural stone and glass.  Ceramic tile is often less expensive and suitable for interior applications only because of its higher water absorption rate.  Porcelain tile is a form of ceramic that is generally more durable because the clay is heated at higher temperatures for longer periods to provide more strength.  Its lower water absorption rate usually makes porcelain tile appropriate for indoor or outdoor applications.   Natural stone and glass mosaics are popular, but they are more expensive and often used as accents or design statements.  Based on its porosity, natural stone must be sealed upon installation and periodically in the future.  For folks who like the character of stone but apprehensive about maintenance, an increasing number of porcelain tiles made to look like stone are available.

Larger, hard tiles are often preferred for floors as they take up more square footage, create fewer grout lines for dirt to collect, and will withstand daily wear and tear.  Small tiles with more texture are best for shower floors to avoid slippage.  Before purchasing tile, you should review the tile’s rating to confirm the best application.  Again, working with the professionals from TriFection’s selections team and our vendor partners will help you make the right decision.

IMG_7726You usually get what you pay for.  As we constantly preach on various aspects of remodeling, remember that the quality of your tile selections matters.  While good deals can be found, cheap tile often looks….well, cheap.  It also can present some significant installation or performance issues in the future.   Shop with reputable vendors who offer a wide selection of high-quality tile.  You certainly don’t have to break the bank to find good material, particularly when working with TriFection professionals who know where to look and can get you the benefit of our discounted contractor pricing.  If you want decorative accent tile or intricate tile patterns, however, be prepared to expand the budget.

IMG_8608Take your time and pay attention to detail.  Picking the tile material(s) is only the first step.  Then, you must thoughtfully lay out the tile in a manner that looks attractive and avoids unforeseen installation problems.  This can be challenging, particularly in a bathroom where different tiles (including accents) for the shower walls, shower floor, recessed niches, tub surrounds and bathroom floor may be involved.  One of the worst remodeling mistakes someone can make is to start laying tile without a well-conceived plan. Imagine the horror of tiling almost an entire bathroom and discovering gaps remain that must be filled with awkward-looking pieces or realizing you’ve run out of tile and that material is now discontinued…..At TriFection, before starting any project involving tile, we provide our clients with computer-generated tile renderings drawn to scale so everyone knows how the finished product should look and the required tile quantity to order.  Our highly skilled designers and master tile setters collaborate on installation to achieve beauty and natural flow throughout the room.

Learn more about TriFection’s selection team and give us a call when you’re ready to get started on your next home improvement project.

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