Why Not Delight in White This Summer?

Is repainting on your summer to-do list? Instead of going with this year’s hot colour, why not bring light into your home by painting some of your rooms white and adding colour as an accent?

As white is classic, you won’t have to repaint regularly; just change your accent colours to stay up to date. Plus your art will look fabulous on white.

For those who have trouble deciding, white is not an easy out. Far from it; there are hundreds of different shades of white available from paint manufacturers. But if you delight in white, here are some things to remember before picking up a roller:

Size matters. White can make smaller spaces appear larger, and it enhances certain features of your home, such as beautiful crown moldings or wall niches. However, if your walls are less than perfect, white will point that out.

If you’re fortunate enough to have an open concept first floor, give your space flow by using different shades of white throughout.

Be sure to use the same undertone: choose a greyed white palette if you want a quiet effect, or select white paint with a yellow base for a sunnier feel.

On your paint card, the colour at the top is usually the lightest. Use this for a small room; paint a neighbouring room the next colour down on the card, and so on. The result will be subtle and elegant.

Consider the outside. White will highlight a beautiful view, especially if both walls and trim are painted in complementary shades of white.

And, yes, you can paint wood trim, and white is an excellent choice; pick a semi-gloss or gloss finish for easy maintenance.

If your room gets bright sunlight, a white with blue undertones will feel cooler. Darker rooms will benefit from a warmer white. And the best advice of all? When in doubt, consult a decorating professional.

Flood Insurance to Be Available Canada Wide

Homeowners who found they had little recourse after the severe flooding that impacted their properties in 2013 may now have a recourse.

Aviva Canada has become the first insurer in the country to introduce a consumer-based flood insurance product. The company has launched overland flood insurance coverage in Ontario and Alberta, and other provinces should be able to purchase policies by year-end.

According to a recent article in The Globe and Mail, Aviva Canada realized the need for such a product after a 2013 summer storm caused tremendous damage in parts of Alberta. Homeowners claims were dealt with on a case-by-case basis, and many were disqualified.

Unlike the U.S., Canada does not have a national flood program, and until now, flood insurance existed primarily for commercial properties. Homeowners insurance typically covers sewage backup, but not flooding, and in the Alberta situation it became a matter of interpretation of individual policies-hence the need for some kind of flood protection.

As Sharon Ludlow, president of Aviva Canada, told the Globe: “We think there’s significant consumer demand for a product like this.” Customers, she added, are asking for it. Other companies are expected to follow Aviva’s lead.

According to the Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC), insurance claims for natural disasters totalled $3.2 billion in 2013. And the severe weather patterns are expected to continue. The flood of 2013 represented what the IBC terms “a wake-up call.” And for Canadians across the country, that can only be good news.