Some upgrades look laughable in the wrong room: plush carpeting in the bathroom or custom drapes in a kitchen. A handful of go-anywhere upgrades work especially well in kitchens and baths — and can raise those rooms from merely functional to inspiringly fashionable.


If you’re looking for an upgrade that will work equally well in your kitchen or bath, consider these improvements:

• Add a skylight. Few upgrades fit equally well in a bathroom or kitchen, but a skylight affords unique benefits to either room. In baths, fresh air skylights admit natural light and provide passive ventilation while providing more privacy than windows. In kitchens, they can reduce the need for artificial lighting and help carry moist air and cooking fumes out of the room. What’s more, skylights can help enhance a home’s overall energy efficiency. Energy Star-qualified solar powered fresh air skylights, like those made by Velux America, reduce dependency on artificial lighting and mechanical ventilation. Paired with remote-controlled solar powered blinds, the skylights become even more efficient, stylish and affordable, since both products, as well as installation costs, qualify for a 30 percent Federal tax credit.

• Upgrade fixtures. From faucets to shower heads, the fixtures in kitchens and baths are like jewelry that completes a fashionable ensemble. For a modest investment, you can upgrade faucets, shower heads and other fixtures to improve usability and add a luxurious look to a kitchen or bath. For example, in the kitchen, touch-free faucets are both beautiful and practical, minimizing the spread of germs by never requiring you to touch a clean faucet with dirty hands. In the bathroom, a luxurious showerhead can enhance your shower experience with a rainfall effect, music or even lights.


• Improve flooring. When choosing flooring for baths and kitchens, remember the value of slip-resistant, moisture-proof, durable options. And if you find a flooring style you love enough to put in both rooms, you just might be able to find a volume discount.

• Add warmth. Kitchens and bathrooms cry out for a cozy atmosphere, but they can also be among the coolest, draftiest rooms in the house. Consider ways to add warmth to both rooms. You have many options: skylights create warmth by bringing sunlight into the room while they make it feel larger.

This article is courtesy of Brandpoint.