East Vancouver has a lot of older condo buildings; some benefits are bigger floor plans and great locations, while some negatives are older interiors and older hallways. Not everyone wants to take on a big reno project, which are always worse than expected, but forgotten quickly once done.
Thankfully there are quite a few easy renovations you can do to spruce up your space, without going weeks without a kitchen or bathroom, or taking more than a few days to get done. If you want a modern looking space, don’t be turned off by older spaces in great buildings… sometimes all of it takes is a few phones calls, a couple colour choices and an afternoon to transform your home into somewhere that satisfies your style.
Us real estate agents are filled with good ideas to modernize your space without breaking the bank or your taking up too much of your time, so here are my Top 5 “Easy” Renovations to do to your Condo:
This one is so simple, and mentioned anytime a space needs an update, but it’s because the task so easy and so transformational! Painting your condo gives you a chance to brighten the space, modernize the doors and trim and start working with fresh walls, allowing you to choose where shelving and pictures go, rather than use the nail holes the previous owner hammered in.
Painting the entire living space one bright colour gives the space a better flow and can make it feel larger. Don’t forgot about painting the ceiling, the doors and trim. If you need help choosing colours that work well with each other, ask the employees at the paint store – they’re experts. They can instruct on colours, technique and materials.
Aren’t intrigued by the idea of painting the unit yourself? Hire a painter! I have a few great recommendations, and it’s often money well spent. You can go away for the weekend and come back to a freshly painted apartment.. you’ll wonder why you didn’t do it sooner.
2. Install Floors!
Just like paint, flooring can make a big difference, especially if you have a few different types of flooring in the space, or aging carpet. Call a flooring specialist who can come into your home to measure the space, bring samples of different colours and finishes and do the ordering and installing. Flooring can take a a day or two depending on the size of the space, but it isn’t long.
Carrying the same floor throughout the home (aside from kitchens and bathrooms where you’ll likely have tile) will make the space feel bigger and will give the unit a nice flow.
3. Get New Cabinet Doors!
If you like the general floor plan of your kitchen, but want to modernize it, think about getting new cabinet doors! All it takes is a call to a Cabinet Door Refacer who will come into your space to get a sense of the number and style of doors needed, they’ll show you different types of materials, colours and handles and then he’ll do the measuring and ordering. A few weeks later he’ll need access to your condo for a day or 2 in order to install the doors and very easily, you’ll have a new kitchen, without the hassle or cost of buying a whole new kitchen. If you need a referral to a great company, let me know, I’m happy to pass it along.
Buy some new appliances while you’re at it (they don’t have to be fancy or expensive, but matching helps) and it will feel like a different space.
4. Get New Counter Tops!
Similar to the cabinets (and hopefully done in conjunction) you should think about getting new counter tops. There are companies that will come into your home to measure your kitchen, they’ll bring samples of different colours and products, they’ll do the ordering and will install the new countertop when it’s been delivered. Again, the install is a quick job. Depending on the size of the kitchen, they can be in and out in a few hours.
Pro Tip: Think about carrying the same counter top as a backsplash. Not only does it modernize the kitchen, but it’s an easy task to make the kitchen feel a little more complete, and has very little grouting and up keep.
Think about buying a new sink faucet while you’re at it, since the new fixture will be an added touch or modern that can be matched to the cabinet handles or appliances.
5. Re-Finish the Bathtub!
Have you ever walked into an older condo unit that features a new-ish bathroom vanity, only to see that the bath tub is still the older pink or beige colour? Well there is an easy fix for that – re-finishing the the bathtub and tiles. There are companies out there that will, in essence, paint the bathtub and tile a sparkly white using a product that withstands the moisture. It will give the bathroom a co-hesive look and will make it feel new, even though the tub hasn’t been replaced.
Take some time to replace the flooring (which can be quite easy in a bathroom with vinyl, and replace the vanity, and you’ll have a clean, bright and modern bathroom.
If this list was a little too much to handle, then do the even easier tasks: de-clutter your home, buy good storage solutions and upgrade certain pieces of furniture and art. Honestly, Ikea has a lot of great stuff (just avoid the classic Ikea pieces like the Lack Coffee Tables and the Kallax Shelving Unit) and great ideas in their gallery.
Don’t hesitate to let us know if you have any questions on doing quick and easy modern renovation, especially if you’re selling! We can ensure that you aren’t throwing money away on projects that wont’ see a return.