Wednesday, September 30, 2015

As Lowe's says, "never stop improving". Escrow closes today on a newly built townhouse I purchased. Of course with model homes, what you see is definitely not what you get at the list price. Let's take a 1,400 sq ft newly built tract home. The model homes are always decked out with customized bathroom wallpaper, dimensional wall paneling, upgraded kitchen granite, cupboards and flooring. What they don't tell you is that custom upgraded laminate floors with the builder and their design team can add on at least another $12,000-$15,000, upgraded granite counter tops are another $5,000+ and a few hundred square feet of 12"x24" porcelain tile for your bathrooms can add on another $6,000. Your model home upgrades can run you an additional $20,000+ on top of list price.

The plan below is to work with the beige walls, the square 90's tile floors and try to make something modern with a few days of DIY. I love using Adobe Photoshop to figure out what I can achieve. See the BEFORE photo, master plan below and check my instagram for AFTER photos to come!

See the before photo here.

  • Remove spindle traditional island legs. Paint legs and inside window frame dark grey.
  • Install instant convertible pendant lights above kitchen island. Turn your recessed lighting into ceiling pendants. No wiring needed! Available here.
  • Find your own contractors that specialize in flooring only. Compare across 3 estimates. Laminate wood materials and labor should run about $6,000 for 1,800 sq ft. (heck of a deal vs $15,000).
  • Remove 6" granite backsplash and range backsplash. Install white mosaic or Smart tile peel and stick option. Smart tile adhesive backsplash available here. Tutorials on granite removal here.
  • DIY roman shades from $5 mini blinds. Tutorials here and all over the internet.
  • Add some color! Lemons, yellow metal bar stools and vintage pepsi crates on Etsy.  

Closed Escrow! How to make a basic kitchen stylish
3:09 PM

Closed Escrow! How to make a basic kitchen stylish