Wednesday, April 27, 2016

A Honey Oak Kitchen with White Appliances - A 4 Day $1,000 Transformation

Hey Folks,
I have been doing a Facebook/Blogging fast for lent. It ended up getting extended since I was enjoying it so much. I had so much time on my hands I was actually bored at goal in life;) Boredom, sweet boredom.

The boredom was short lived. After burning through about 15  - 20 library books in the first month, I turned my attention to watching/scouring/obsessing over the MLS listings. I have a huge fascination with real estate and have watched way too many episodes of "Income Property". So naturally, thank you Scott McGillivray, I was overwhelmed with the urge to fulfill one of my bucket list items and buy a rental property. Having time on your hands can be dangerous.

So without a real estate agent and after looking at a total of two properties we put an offer in on a condo (we got an amazing deal) and got it!!! Yippee. So freaking stressful but so exciting.

Our 4 day kitchen transformation. These pictures were taken with different camera's -
but the cabinets really do look like a completely different colour now. Its pretty amazing!

They had done a lot of upgrades to get the unit ready to sell. Fortunately for us, they misfired on the kitchen with the avocado green paint and sticking with the original pulls, hood fan and counter top (circa 1983). Yuck. And they kindly replaced the fridge and stove...........with white! Ugh.  Even with all my design training (i.e. HGTV marathons), even I was having trouble figuring out how to deal with this kitchen.

But I never back down from a challenge so with just over 2 weeks between the offer going in and getting possession I frantically studied "how to downplay Honey Oak cabinets", "best upgrades for a rental property", "best paint colours with honey oak", "honey oak cabinets + white appliances". My google search and Pinterest were on fire.

Almost everyone seems to decide to paint their honey oak cabinets so I didn't have a lot to go on. Given this is going to be a rental and the cabinets are in really good shape, I felt it was better to leave them as is. So we decided to work with what we had in terms of cabinets and do what we could to minimize their brassiness with the counter-top, back-splash and paint. Plus - I do really like wood.

A few things I did learn through my google research in regards to making the most of honey oak cabinets were:

  • Make sure none of your finishes - especially paint - have any pink undertones;
  • Oil Rubbed Bronze works well with oak compared to most other finishes - I have to say that I agree - not something I would pick for my own home as I'm more of a mid-century modern girl but they really do work (plus the hinges were dark so that was a perfect choice for us);
  • If you've got white appliances you need to make them blend in. That's why we chose light colors for all the other finishes. 

We were also dealing with a space that has NO EXTERIOR WINDOWS. Yikes. So again, we were trying to do what ever we could to keep the space light and airy.

I can't tell you how excited I am about how this turned out. We were able to turn this project around in 4 days and just over $1,000 (see breakdown of costs below after the pictures). Which includes the purchase of a dishwasher. We did everything ourselves and we have some bumps and bruises to prove it but it was worth it and so rewarding! My hubby is amazing at DIY and I'm quite proud that I was able to keep my "investor" hat on most of the time. Its tempting to want to decorate the space for yourself rather than for a tenant but I stuck to my guns. I almost got sidetracked and ended up with quartz counters that were 4 x the price - but common sense persevered.

Okay - gotta run - now I've actually got to find someone to live in this unit. If you know someone they can email Available immediately!!!

Luckily there was wiring/plumbing roughed in for the dishwasher - it had just never been used??? I'm pretty sure our renters will appreciate this new feature.
Oh those old pulls.........they left behind some damage but I cleaned them up as best I could.

Typhoon Bordeaux Laminate - I had 16 colours to chose from since we needed it cut in one business day. There are two places in town that do this and they each have 8 in-stock colours.  Its actually quite lovely. 

How much did we spend (in Canadian dollars, excluding taxes):
  • Dishwasher - $349 - awesome sale at Sears - Kenmore
  • Counter-top - $459 - Winnipeg Custom Counter-tops - Typhoon Bordeaux Laminate
  • Pulls - $59.98 - Home Depot - Oil Rubbed Bronze - 2 x 10 packs
  • Back splash - $108.19 - Home Depot - Special Buy Event
  • Paint & Primer- $60 - Premier Brand - Canadian Tire - Benjamin Moore Buckwheat color match
  • Hood Fan - $59 - Rona
So for a total of $1,095.17 (plus some incidentals like grout and other supplies) I think we did a pretty great transformation.


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  2. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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