Stevens guest bath AFTER

A Few Small Touches Make Big Impact

Before After
We absolutely love to have the same clients come back to us time and time again for home renovation projects. Returning clients can be the best clients. Not only does it validate that Just Counters & other stuff Inc. does good work, but also that we have established a strong foundation of trust. If a client comes back again, they most likely enjoyed the previous engagement and were happy with the results. It means so much knowing that our team is trusted, valued, and seen as the top choice among remodeling professionals. We are blessed to be able to call the majority of our long-term clients both our customers, and our friends. Such is the story behind our clients Dick and Linda Stevens. 
Six years ago Dick and Linda purchased their move-in-ready three-bedroom, two-bathroom, 1994 built villa. Our former clients already knew our work ethic, the quality of our work, and our professionalism because they hired us to remodel their master ensuite. (Click here to see the “Five-Star Master Suite”) However, the guest bath was the one room that hadn’t been updated in their home. Now, they were ready to make cosmetic changes to the room.
Linda couldn’t tell me how many times she has looked at the ugly soffits, and wanted them out of the bathroom. For some weird reason the builder originally put a soffit over the vanity and tub/shower which made this bathroom feel even more enclosed. The homeowner felt the soffits looked dated, and she wanted a more modern appearance with greater height. So, Linda scheduled an appointment for me to meet with her in their lovely condo.  
Before After
After Linda briefed me about why she wanted to hire Just Counters & other stuff. She wanted us to perform a “soffit-ectomy” (get rid of those ugly soffits), remove existing shower wall tiles and install new modern tiles, do away with the old Plexiglas fluorescent tube lights and wall-to-wall mirror above the vanity. She also wanted us to install a new modern light fixture, framed mirror, and by-pass shower door. She planned to keep the existing vanity and countertop, bathtub, and flooring. I discussed the scope of the project and set realistic expectations around costs and timeline.
The first thing Just Counters needed to do was to make sure the soffits were empty. Our pros would look to see if there might be some hidden reasons why the soffits were built in the first place. Soffits, or bulkheads are areas of the ceiling that have been lowered and enclosed. Bulkheads are often used to conceal things, particularly in the bathroom. There may be concealed exhaust fan, duct work, plumbing, or a maze of electrical wires that were installed after the room was framed. Before you can remove the bulkhead, you need to know what’s in it.
There’s a right way and wrong way to do it. When it comes time to remove soffits, you could bang holes in it with a sledgehammer like they do on TV. We’ve all seen remodeling TV shows where people get excited about the thought of demolishing the sheetrock and so they use a sledgehammer to open soffits. While this is certainly one way of gaining access, it could do more damage than you think. This may be a fun and even cathartic approach, but I don’t recommend doing it. After all, you don’t know what’s on the other side. There could be something that simply cannot be moved right behind the sheetrock. You might end up breaking something and then end up with costly repairs. 
Before After
 Just Counters team Aaron Shaffer and Daniel Miller cut a neat hole in the drywall and then inspected inside the soffit with a flashlight to see if there were any unexpected surprises. It would be much easier for them to repair a small piece of sheetrock if they discovered something that could not be moved.
Lucky for the homeowners, there was nothing inside the soffits.  It was just “dead space.” So Aaron and Daniel were able to remove the dated soffits. The renovation was recently completed and as you can see in the “after” photos, there’s definitely a feeling of spaciousness that is far removed from the original design.
Linda selected 12×36 3-D Glaciar Wave Glossy shower wall tiles by Happy Floors. The 3-D tiles add a fresh twist and is a great way to create movement in any design. Another area to gain space is with a shower niche; it gives you somewhere to put the soap and bottles of shampoo. Linda carefully chose white Thassos and Calacatta gold mixed marble hexagon-shaped mosaic Elysium Tiles by Eclipse Sun for the shower niche. Linda was looking for ways to add function and personality without overwhelming the tub-shower combo. I think Linda’s tile choices were spot-on. Everything turned out beautifully! 
Chris, a quiet and hardworking tile setter from Pucci Tile & Marble, Inc. did a wonderful job installing the tub/shower tile. 
Just because you have a small bathroom, that doesn’t mean your vanity unit has to suffer. The right look can allow your area to come across as more spacious, and you can even give your bathroom a pleasing contemporary style in the process. When Linda was looking for a cost-effective way to improve their bathroom, she considered the smaller details. She wanted the guest bath to appear larger, so she used a cool color paint tone, a bold new light fixture, and a beautiful framed mirror. 
Before After

Got a small guest bathroom? Chances are it’s ready for a makeover. Don’t think there is much you can do to a small bathroom that will make a difference? Ah, wrong attitude, my friends! With the right combination of colors, décor and lighting, you can not only improve the functionality, but can also make a small bathroom appear a lot larger, and certainly more up-to-date.



Dear readers: This blog was written before Hurricane Ian, the monstrous category 4 storm, made landfall on September 28, 2022 in Port Charlotte, Florida. As it turned out, when Hurricane Ian made landfall, it was one of the most powerful hurricanes in American history. It became one of the most powerful storms to reach the United States mainland. Ian blasted through with 150 mile per hour winds, snapping telephone and utility poles, ripping roofs from homes, and tumbling mobile homes and RVs. Prayers to anyone in the pathway of this devastating tragedy.

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