If you’re totally clueless about home renovation like we were, I’m hoping this post will give you an idea of where to start!
Renovations on our house are FINALLY underway! And by that I mean absolutely no work has been done. BUT…we found a professional we want to work with and have started the design process. Which is actually a really big deal. It was a lot of work just to get this far. I don’t have any progress pics to show (yet), but I wanted to share what our experience has been like during this very early stage. This is a long post, but I think the information is valuable and will hopefully give you an idea of where to start if you’re in the same boat.
It probably doesn’t make a ton of sense to start with a kid’s bedroom when you have an entire house to renovate, but we figured out pretty quick that our daughter’s bedroom was priority #1. Why? Because she REFUSED to sleep in it (which meant she was sleeping in our bed….every…single…night). Not only is she too old for that, but having a 4-year-old in your bed is like sleeping with a zoo animal.
I can’t really blame her though, for a very girly girl her bedroom in the new house was dark and a little bit scary (her words). As you can see from the before pics the walls were a yellow beige color with a dark green accent wall (it was darker in person), and a heinous blue and green floral wallpaper border. There were also dark wood doors and trim; lots and lots of trim. Top it off with some mis-matched furniture and it wasn’t a very welcoming space for a little girl.
The first house my husband and I bought together was a new construction home in a really fun neighborhood. It was close to downtown and all the bars, restaurants and coffee shops that made us feel cool. We were newlyweds and it was a major step up from anywhere either of us had lived previously.
We enjoyed being a young professional couple for about 5 minutes before finding out I was pregnant. 7 years and 2 kids later, it started to feel like the walls of our cool urban row house were closing in around us. We were on a busy street, with no extra bedrooms for family and guests, no yard space to play in, and no room for the copious amount of toys and crap totally necessary stuff that kids need. It was time to move.
We looked everywhere and started to realize that a lot of the newer homes in the neighborhoods we really liked were totally out of our price range. Even many at the top of our budget that were ‘updated’ (a totally misleading real estate term btw) were actually still very dated and needed work.
Doesn’t look so terrible right? Yeah well, looks can be deceiving. In person “it’s a full-on Monet – from far away it’s not so bad, but close up it’s a big ‘ol mess”. If you recognize that quote you’re as old as I am. But it’s on a nice big lot with a fenced backyard, extra bedrooms and bathrooms and it’s in a great school district. And the kicker… it was on the low end of our budget. All the features that made us start tossing out phrases like “good bones”, “fixer-upper”, “project house”, “we can make it our own'”. etc. So we bought it. And those phrases quickly changed to things like “holy balls what have we done!?” and “we don’t even own any tools!”.