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Many People Are Looking For The Simpler Life

The pandemic has made many people look at their lifestyle and some have opted for a quieter life by renovating and selling their homes before moving on to quieter climes.




A couple wanting a simpler life renovated their kitchen to put their property on the market.


Many lives have changed as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic and it has forced many to re-evaluate their lifestyle. One trend that is showing is that many homeowners are selling up and moving to a life that is less hectic and more simple. In this feature, we show a kitchen renovation that was done to improve the property value of a home before the homeowners sell up and move to the coast.

Selling a property in the current market means that you have to do everything you can to achieve top dollar. Everyone wants a good profit if they plan to move and start all over again and getting a property into shape is a necessary evil in order to do that. With so many properties up for sale, yours needs to catch as much attention as possible.

Wilma Muller and her husband in OFS shared their kitchen renovation with Home-Dzine and discuss in detail what had to be done to complete their do it yourself kitchen renovation. As the only room not updated, the kitchen was last on the list before putting their home up for sale.










Not everyone has the funds to take on a kitchen renovation that involves ripping out old cabinets and installing new ones, but luckily for Wilma, the cupboards were still in great condition and didn't have to be consigned to the rubbish dump. Wood kitchens are long-lasting and are easy to update without too much hassle if you are prepared to put in the time and effort and you will save a fortune if you are prepared to do it yourself.



In this kitchen renovation, nothing was moved or altered which also saves money on having a plumber or electrician come in to install pipes, plugs and wiring. If there's nothing wrong with the basic layout and it works well for you, why change it?



The above images show how the kitchen was transformed with some paint, tiles, new countertops and effort on the part of the homeowners. The original large-format floor tiles were still in good condition and these weren't changed as they would also go well with the ideas for the DIY kitchen renovation. Obviously, some things had to go and that included the natural slate wall feature at one end of the kitchen, especially since the countertops - also natural slate tiles - were being replaced with something more modern.



The kitchen before [above] is representative of a wood kitchen from the 80s/90s with yellowed Oak wood cupboards and cabinets and dark finishes.



The homeowners decided to put the property on the market with a dream of moving to the West Coast for a quieter lifestyle. Having made the decision, it was then decided to do as much of the entire renovation in the house themselves rather than have to pay a fortune to have someone do it for them. If you want to do a kitchen renovation yourself but are not sure if you have the time or have no inclination for DIY, you can always hire daily labourers to do the hard work on your behalf.







From start to finish the entire kitchen renovation took approximately 6 weeks with both Wilma and hubby worked on the project during the week and took a break on the weekends.



Wilma and her hubby are both keen DIY enthusiasts and they managed to save a lot of money by doing most of the work themselves. With plans to put the house up for sale, they were concerned that the kitchen might affect the selling price. The house itself is quite old and they were happy with the original kitchen design but worried that it might affect the selling price and put buyers off.



Before and after of the laundry room that wasn't changed other than to rip out and replace the splashback around the walls, paint the kitchen cabinets and install a new countertop and sink.



With a budget of R80,000 which included a hefty amount for the granite countertops and new appliances, the total amount spent on the renovation was R63,000. Here is a breakdown of how the money was spent:


Breakdown of Costs for the Kitchen Renovation


    o Hardware - Double oven, hob, basin, veg basin and tap, shelves - R32 500

    o Granite - R23 000

    o Electrician & plumber - R1 900

    o Tiles - R1 400

    o Paint - R3 000

    o Various (sandpaper, brushes, glue, etc.) - R1 200


All the door handles and knobs were cleaned, painted and re-installed on the painted cupboards and cabinets and the grass blinds were given a couple of coats of spray paint to freshen them up.



Any Cost Savings Count


Waste not -want not is a good saying to keep in mind when planning for a kitchen renovation. If it is still in good condition or does the job why replace it if you can save money by upcycling and making it look new, as was the case with the grass blinds on the kitchen windows. With a couple of coats of spray paint, the blinds fit in perfectly with the finished look.








The Most Expensive Items Budgeted For


The most expensive items on the project list were the new appliances that came in at R32,500 with the next being the granite countertops that cost R23,000. Granite is considered a luxury finish in a kitchen and buyers look for this when inspecting properties for purchase. If your budget doesn't allow for such a large amount, you could also look at composite or quartz countertops or even Formica LifeSeal laminate countertops.



Paint Instantly Updates a Kitchen


A couple of coats of Plascon Velvaglo satin non-drip paint in 2 colours on the kitchen cupboards give the kitchen a modern touch that is perfectly on-trend. The kitchen cupboards and cabinets were cleaned and sanded before a multi-purpose primer was applied. The colours used on the cupboards and cabinets were white for the walls and floor units and crete shore on the kitchen island.

Mandarin Tusk on the walls covers up the previously dark red walls and bathes the kitchen in light.



Trendy Design Features


Where possible, adding a few trendy design features will instantly update any kitchen. In this example, the slate tile wall was replaced with a modern design that provides the perfect backdrop for the new kitchen. A couple of open shelves and a few accessories in a bold colour complete the look and provide a dramatic focal point.


Two-tone kitchens are trendy and also a great idea to open up a compact kitchen or brighten up a dark kitchen. Having white cupboards on the walls and darker cupboards on the floor leave the kitchen feeling airy and bright.



Small Details Make a Difference


In any renovation, it's the small details, the personal touches that make a difference. In the original kitchen, Wilma incorporated deep red accessories, from crockery to pans to appliances. These details were kept in the newly renovated kitchen and add personality. 



The Bottom Line


Anyone can take on a kitchen renovation on a do it yourself basis, you just have to be prepared to put in the work. When done properly and without any shortcuts, you can save yourself a lot of money and give a kitchen a brand new look, one that will increase the value of a property. Think carefully before you make the leap and take the time to plan a budget that you can afford.





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