In the last couple of years, our homes have seen a lot more of us than usual, and at the same time we’ve been paying a lot more attention to our walls, floors, and finishing’s also.
If you’re noticing there’s too many cooks in the kitchen, a light fixture that’s giving you more fixture than light or if you have walls that can talk and are begging to be refreshed, let’s look at some home makeovers to help clean up and clear-out this new year.
While there have been many renovation trends passing through homes from room-to-room over the years, and while the type of upgrade is chosen based on necessity or personal preference, we’ve made a list of our Top 5 categories with many options to choose from…
KITCHENIf the kitchen is the heart of your home, it will be where everyone comes to gather – to discuss the workday, make an after-school snack or to simply sit and read the newspaper while opening a bottle of equally newsworthy wine. But if you’re starting to notice a few more stacked items on your kitchen bench, a storage renovation might be your first port of call.
• Are two islands one island too many? Welcome in a social, entertaining scene to your kitchen by having one island for food preparation and cooking and the other for family and guests to gather, complete homework and provide a lively backdrop with any meal or time of day. Wayfair has some great kitchen island and kitchen carts to choose from if you don’t feel up to a whole ‘from scratch’ build
• A corner cupboard featuring a Lazy Susan turntable is a great way to store pots and pans, so the one you want can be found easily with a swift turn of a shelf. Slide-out shelves built within cupboards are also a great idea for more efficient use of top-to-bottom space
• You garage your car, but what about kitchen appliances? An appliance garage, as its name suggests, is a way to house your toaster, your coffee machine and other small appliances. An exposed corner nook can easily be converted into incognito cabinetry that blends seamlessly in and saves valuable bench space. To keep minimalistic, there are options for swing up doors (rather than out) or roll-up panels that use up less space
• Oh, for cord’s sake. If your countertop is laden with chargers, phones, and gadgets, designating a charging drawer to your kitchen might help retain a little order. First off where possible, it’s a good idea to keep power outlets out of sight inside cupboards or your appliance garage so that if there are cords and cables about, they’re kept a little more ‘out of mind’ also. Pick a drawer in your kitchen to allocate docking duty, install power outlets at the back of the drawer, and then section off areas for phones, tablets and laptops, headphones and whatever else can call this home
• Think beyond the traditional spice rack or pantry set-up, and look to instal a hidden slide-out pantry. Narrow and sleek, these vertical drawers can be tucked in alongside your fridge, between your oven and countertop or even replace a current cupboard
• Another sneaky little idea is to install a pull-out chopping board at the top of a cupboard so that you retain clear bench space by keeping your chopping station off to the side. Shop for full-extension drawer slides to install and your choice of board to go on top. A hot tip is to install this in your rubbish bin cupboard so that scraps can be quickly swiped off the board and into the bin – ta-da!
BATHROOMTime to get some alone time, remove yourself from day-to-day stresses and turn your basic bathroom into a dreamy spa oasis.
• A bathtub is not always a necessity, and often some bathrooms are not made with enough space to host one anyhow. But, if you do have the space and you’re considering installing a tub to soak away some stress, stick with a smaller tub. Why? They take up less floor space and use up less water and energy when filling. Treat yourself further and find yourself a faucet (tub filler) that holds your glass of wine…
• There’s no doubt your bathroom has a shower. But what about a steam shower? Turn your shower time into sauna time by upgrading to this luxury bathroom experience. Looking to make it even more spa-like? Add some aromatherapy and essential oils to your steam session and really breathe in that stress relief
• Not needing a new shower, but perhaps a new shower head? Consider a low-flow option that kindly pumps out less water, saving you gallons on daily and annual household use while retaining minimal to no difference in pressure
• Toes chilly? If you’re considering reflooring your bathroom, you could also consider adding heated flooring while you’re at it. While not expensive to install, be aware that they will add to your power bill. But… they will add value to your home also!
• If your tiles are cracked or your vinyl is lifting, it might be time to lay down some new flooring. Porcelain and ceramic are two top contenders for floor renovations due to being waterproof, low bacteria absorption, their cost and their ability to mimic other materials that may cost more. A larger tile is also a good idea so there are fewer grout lines to clean and aesthetically, will look less cluttered
INTERIOR DESIGNFrom wall colours to backsplash designs and kitchenware, there’s a lot to think about when it comes to what you want to look at day in and day out.
• Keep a neutral base. By choosing more natural shades for the bigger pieces – walls, curtains, flooring – you can then change around your furniture and decorative pieces more easily, frequently, and affordably. A neutral colour (grey, beige, or white) will never go out of style, but your geometric couch cushions might. This way, depending on your mood, the season or simply the decade, you can refresh the rooms in your home as often as a Bed, Bath & Beyond sale
• With increased preference to be more ‘green-friendly’, it could be a good time to replace your lightbulbs with energy-efficient LEDs, choose furniture with reclaimed or recycled materials or even look to up-cycle your own if you have the time and an artsy-crafty side. What’s friendlier than finding a beautiful old dresser at your local thrift store, giving it a good sanding, paint, and some fresh, new handles – it’s true, vintage is making a comeback!
• Speaking of being eco-friendly, being ‘green’ is a trend all on its own. From indoor plants filling up corner tables and bench space, green is also a top pick for paint colour in 2022. Paint companies are naming shades of green as the new year colour of choice thanks to its visual association with the outdoors and another way to connect with nature
• As space-saving is becoming a necessity, convertible furniture is popping up more often in living rooms, kitchens and bedrooms. From ottomans that secretly store a pull-out bed, shelves that fold into a dining table and wall features that can turn into flip-out barbecues, there really isn’t a nifty renovation you can’t install. Check out these and a whole lot of other creative, convertible ideas here
MULTIFUNCTIONAL ROOMSWe’ve talked about having two islands in the kitchen, doubling up the space for kitchen duties and extra space to socialize, but where else could you adapt a multifunctional element in your home?
• You don’t need a massive home to incorporate an office or wrangle a workspace into a small area. However, you might like to go full reno-mode and shift a wall out to create an added nook or just simply buy and install a wall-mounted desk onto your living room wall – you can still get crafty and make one by hand!
• Your home may already have an independent room for your laundry, but perhaps this space could be better utilized as an at-home office, reading room or extra storage room. But where will your washer and dryer go? Your bathroom may be a great relocation spot or you could even build two Save in your kitchen or living area and guests will be none the wiser!
• If you live in a two (or more) storied home, and your staircase currently has nothing below it, this could be a great spot to build a cozy workstation, some custom shelving or stealthy storage. Depending on how much space you do have, you could also build a snug little alcove to sit and read with a built-in bench, pillows, overhead light, and floating bookshelves. In addition, it’s not a bad place to consider moving that washer and dryer…
• If you have guests frequently come to stay or your children like to have friends sleep-over, a Murphy (or wall-mounted) bed is a perfect space-saver for any spare room, office or living room. A vertical bed that’s conveniently hidden behind a cabinet-looking façade can even include cupboards, storage, and/or lighting. A great way to keep a spare room free for other uses and be simply pulled down when it’s time for lights out
• Throughout the pandemic, people are opting to either work out from home or outside rather than head into their regular gym. Depending on how much space you have in your living room or spare room, it might be nice to set up a little ‘you’ station – an area to keep a set of dumbbells, a yoga mat, an indoor plant and even a candle to feel truly zen. By having a designated area, you will have added motivation as well as utilize an area of your house that might just be spare space otherwise
OUTSIDEPerhaps a little tricky to consider now in the thick of winter, but come spring, we’ll all be wanting an outdoor haven to retreat to when the warmer weather hits. This could be a great time to start planning what to do with your outdoor space…
• A pizza oven is a fantastic option not just for the cook a new space to work in, but a great way to get everyone together and spend some time outdoors. With many options to choose from ready to set up and go, including stand-alone, portable, counter-top with options to use charcoal, propane, electric or wood-burning, you could also get more hands-on and build your own
• Something that may get put off from year to year, 2022 might however be the time for some roof and/or gutter attention. Whether you need a little roofing maintenance or a full roof replacement, there are many companies nearby such as Penfolds that can help you with your project. It might even be an idea to install some solar panels with any roofing makeover to help boost your home’s energy efficiency while you’re at it!
• It’s no shock that the cost of produce is creeping up so what better time to start planning how and where to build your own vegetable garden. Whether you have some lawn space to convert or you’re good with a hammer and nails and can build your own vege box, there are many different herbs and vegetables that you can grow and enjoy year-round
• If you’re building a vegetable garden, you may want to tackle a larger landscaping job and increase your curb appeal. From creating a new back or front yard aesthetic – pathways, gardens, and water features – through to adding a social firepit, shaded seating, privacy walls or working on luscious lawns… there’s always a little something to try!
• We notice that our skin flakes and peels when exposed to harsh conditions, and our houses are no different. Hot sun and cold winters can affect our home’s exterior. When choosing paint, consider the material that you’re looking to paint (vinyl, metal, wood, stucco or masonry) as they all require different types. Determine if you need a paint primer as well as decide on which paint finish you wish to end up with – gloss, semi-gloss, satin or flat. The Spruce has listed their choice for what 2021’s best exterior paints were to give you a head start on planning
Whether you’re thinking that 2022 is the year you search for a new havn, or if it’s simply going to be the year that you refresh your current havn, I'm here to help. Whether you want to find out your home’s current market valuation, determine which renovations might be necessary for your home prior to selling, or to simply talk through the selling process and what it would look like for you, let’s work through the steps together.