For a home with a personality as unique as you, why not check out one of the hottest and most sustainable remodeling trends today? Reclaimed building materials give your Bergen County home a one-of-a-kind look that can’t be replicated with new, ready-made products.
What are reclaimed materials?
Reclaimed building materials are materials that have been previously used in a construction project and are repurposed for something new. They can be sourced from a demolition or remodel. The most common reclaimed materials are wooden boards, bricks, stones, window frames, glass panes, tiles and metal fixtures.
Why choose reclaimed?
- It’s eco-friendly. Creating new materials has a significant impact on the environment, from water consumption to waste pollution. Reclaiming materials virtually eliminates all of that harm, plus it keeps all those used materials out of landfills!
- It’s cost-effective. Because reclaimed materials can be sourced from salvage yards and demolition sites, prices are up to 75 percent lower than buying new. When you have a home remodeling budget to stretch, that kind of savings can go a long way.
- It’s creative. You have the opportunity to take ordinary objects and create pieces that are unique to you and your family. The possibilities for repurposing old materials into something new are limitless. Because reclaiming is such a cost-effective solution, you’ll have room to explore different designs with very little risk.
- It’s a great investment. Clever statement pieces made from reclaimed materials can enhance the value of your home when you integrate them smartly. An eye-catching kitchen sink or a repurposed window pane can draw buyers if you ever choose to sell your home.
How can I use reclaimed materials in my home?
The size and complexity of your reclaimed material project is completely up to you! Whether you’d like to make a showpiece or simply a small decoration, you can find plans for trendy, innovative options that suit all imaginations and home remodeling skill levels. The sheer amount of information can be overwhelming, though, and some projects will be a better fit for your home and personality than others. Here are some guidelines for jumping into reclaiming.
- If you’re unsure about reclaiming, start with accents. Sturdy wrought iron window bars can be transformed into a beautiful bathroom mirror or old brackets can spruce up new shelving. Sometimes, a small but eye-catching piece can be more impressive than a larger project. Try an old stained glass window fitted into an existing window frame or antique door fixtures on a refinished dresser for a look that really pops!
- When it comes to salvaging wood from demolitions, older is often better. Wood milled at the beginning of the 20th century came from trees that were already 100-200 years old. The rings of the trees were tighter, making the wood sturdier and denser. Compare that to new-build lumber, which is milled from trees that are merely 10-30 years old. Because older wood is so durable, consider using things like salvaged doors and floorboards for the same use in your remodeling project. For more ambitious projects, turn-of-the-century wood can be redesigned into tables, countertops or even stools.
- Try to match the style and era of your home, or at least complement it. Reclaimed or salvaged pieces can be quite the conversation starters, but you want those conversations to be positive. Projects that are mismatched to each other or the rest of your house will look more hodgepodge than rustic and can even make your home’s value decrease if you decide to sell later on. Having said that…
- Don’t be afraid to get just a little quirky. Think outside the box; almost anything from the right home demolition can be reclaimed into something all your own. Look for shutters, bricks, railings, columns, molding or fireplace mantels. With a little imagination, forgotten pieces of once-beautiful homes can be given new life.