It was a risk, buying a house that looked like complete and utter #”%&, but we saw the potential. At first it wasn’t fun to see our friend’s reactions when they saw the house. Even with all of the warning that it is a full renovation, very run down, when people saw it there was only comments of ‘Oh. Wow. This is really a project.’ and it was actually like people felt sorry for us. It freaked people out, I think some people actually felt uncomfortable. We didn’t buy this thinking it would be easy, but we knew it would be rewarding and we knew we could make it amazing.
Maybe we are a little crazy, but we always had a vision and now it is finally starting to shine through. The new render on the facade is now complete and suddenly everyone is seeing what we knew would happen all along. It was one year ago that we moved in and now the neighbours are stopping in the street and saying ‘What a tranformation’ and ‘You now have the best house in the Neighbourhood’. While I wouldn’t go that far yet, it is shaping up to be a spectacular home and we are so proud.
Below are the before and after photos of the outside of the house. In these photos you can also see that the garden has been somewhat tamed in the last year, allowing for the house to actually be seen.
Changing the facade is underway! This job we have outsourced… there are two guys who are doing an incredible job. Our original facade was an old rough render which had been patched and painted a million times, it was lose and falling off in many places. It also had the roots remaining from ivy that had grown all over it. What can I say about ivy? Well, that shit really sucks!
We have opted for a smooth render, painted white. It isn’t yet ready to reveal, it is completely rendered but the painting has just started on the front side. It is looking unbelievable! Below are some before and after shots. Will put all the photos up upon completion.
The whole game of replacing render, is a jungle. What to use, what to remove, how to make sure the house breathes. Crazy! We used render by Weber, with a glass reinforced mesh… along with other things I have no idea about… ask Fredrik. 😛 They started about two weeks ago and just have the painting to go. Definitely worth the investment!
We are totally in love with our new house! 🙂
Front door before:
Front door after render and paint:
Applying new render to the front:
Front after all new windows, new render and painted:
Side after new window, window changed to door and removal of door:
Finally, it is time to share the complete journey of the bathroom renovation. The truth is that it has been finished for months, but I have been too lazy to put together the video.
Eventually, this will be our guest bathroom but for the time being it is our only bathroom. This is a very small space but shows how making smart decisions can create a feeling of space. The large tiles and colour palette really help. This was also all done for less that 25 000SEK ($4000), which including all tapware, porcelain, floor heating is quite an achievement.
So we did everything, new pipes, floor heating, waterproofing, tiles etc etc etc. One might say it is a slight improvement… It is amazing what you can do when you want to! 🙂
So here is the before and after. Be prepared to be impressed! 🙂
The process from beginning to end… be warned my filming can cause dizziness:
We have had a bit of downtime since Christmas when it comes to the remodel, and I think that is really important otherwise I think this project would drive us mad and it is probably the best advice experienced renovators have given us… take breaks! After coming back from the US and Mexico where we had an awesome holiday we struggled to get our mojo back, but with the new season of The Block being released we have suddenly found our motivation again and it feels really good.
Now we have finally started to get the plaster on the walls upstairs, the kitchen is getting ordered this week and the new windows for downstairs. Pretty glad that Spring has come early this year as it means we have a bit more time to some of the boring stuff like drainage around the house.
We sometimes forget how much progress we have made, but here is something that really shows it. Below is a photo of how the upstairs living area was before, this is it when we moved in, it was three rooms:
This is it now… it is one amazing room with ceiling window, spotlights, new walls, new heating…. it is virtually a completely new house:
This doesn’t happen all by itself… here are some progress shots:
We have also done a rough renovation of the room I used to call ‘the crime scene’ as it was pretty damn gross! It is amazing what a coat of paint can do!
Living in the middle of a house that is being completely remodeled has its moments, you buy a house that is around 160m2 and you can only live in around 25m2, but it will all be worth it in the end. Most people are shocked when the see the scope of the project we have taken on, but everyone is always amazed at the progress. Our Real Estate Agent told us that this will be best house in the area if we go through with the plans we have, so it should pay off in the end.
Right now we have an old kitchen (which works REALLY well, plus we put in a dishwasher just because I am a bit precious), old yucky toilet, hideous shower and then a cosy, slightly renovated, room with our sofa, bed, TVs (yep we have two in one room) and then a room where I can have some clothes etc. It sure is cosy, but I think it works, it is clean as it could be (I have emptied about 20 bleach bottles cleaning the shower alone!). The thing I miss the most is having a nice shower, I mean the shower works, the water is hot and clean but it isn’t really relaxing being surrounded with old pipes and very interesting orange walls! In these photos, you can see it for yourself. I could have done the photoshoot on a day when it was all tidy, but why not show it at its worst, on the day when the sheets are in the wash and clothes are everywhere! 🙂
On a more exciting note, we now have all of the pieces for the basin and cabinet in our bathroom. This one was designed by Amanda, made by Fredrik! We couldn’t find anything that matched the vision I had in my head that was going to fit in such a small space so instead we found all of the individual pieces and made our own custom bathroom basin and cabinet. I think it is going to look awesome!
Not completely finished, still need to add some Oak details to cover the wooden beam between the door and side window and also the finishing touches around the door, but still a slight improvement I would say! 🙂 Seems we didn’t have great before shots from outside, but you get the picture!
Now that we have the time, we are finally starting to take steps to get the garden under control. I told a lot of people that the garden was crazy but I don’t think anyone really understood exactly what I meant, many commented ‘I love gardening’, then when they see it they mostly seem shocked and say, ‘Oh, wow this really IS crazy’. I guess you could more accurately describe it as a jungle. The old man who lived there loved his garden but obviously he hasn’t been able to work in the garden for at least 10 years.
We have really started to see progress now, which feels awesome! Reassuring that this big renovation project is possible. Our neighbours have also been stopping by to say how glad they are to see that someone is finally clearing the jungle. One neighbour said she hasn’t seen the house in years.
So what have we done?
1) Cleaned out and painted the garage. We need to store a lot of tools and deliveries in here, so we thought this was a good place to start! We put in a new concrete floor and and gave it one rough coat of paint.
2) Taken the ivy down from the walls of the house and little outside area. SHIT JOB! That stuff is evil! I used to think it was pretty but it really is just a weed. It leaves all of the Arial roots on the wall which are pretty much impossible to take off. We started today to get these off with the high pressure hose, it doesn’t get them all but it makes a difference. I will put up some after photos when it is done.
3) Trimmed back bushes, cut grass and chopped down about 12 trees… that is right 12! Not all small either. The difference is astounding. So much more light and everything feels so much bigger.
Before Tree Removal:
After Tree Removal:
More Before Shots:
More Progress and After Shots:
We also had a few helpers and our first picnic in the garden! 🙂