When property investors Tanya and Craig took on the challenge of transforming a dark, cramped and floorless 1920s kitchen into a bright, airy and functional space, they jumped in head first – and bumped up their rental income by more than 50%.
Tanya and Craig decided to renovate their 1920s California style bungalow to improve their rental return and increase their equity. It wasn't all smooth sailing in this Ringwood refresh, but the result – an annual $10k rental boost – was worth it .
“When we got to the kitchen, we realised that underneath the kitchen cupboards and bench, there was no floor!” explained Tanya.
“The kitchen was dark and claustrophobic. The walls were a dirty yellow colour, complemented by maroon coloured lower benchtops and black vinyl flooring. The only window was covered with plants and so there was very limited natural light to this dark kitchen.”
Tanya and Craig lifted the space by choosing light, neutral colours. They also opted to leave out the island bench as there was already sufficient storage – this way, the tenants could pop in a dining table instead, giving the illusion of a larger area.
“We knew the appliances and cabinetry would cost us the most, so we started out by visiting a well-known showroom that had all the appliances on display. From there we made a short list of what we wanted and went searching for them at cheaper stores. We had written quotes and asked each retailer to beat the quote until we found exactly what we wanted at the right price.”
Because the house was built in the 1920s, none of the walls or floors were very straight, which added to the overall cost.
“We had to choose custom-made because using the stock-standard flat pack would really not achieve the look we were aiming for. Spending a little extra here means we can confidently ask for more in rent,” Tanya says.
The same was true when it came to hiring expert trades.
“We had to change around some pipes after our plumber told us the current configuration could lead to leaks in the future. The last thing we wanted to do is rip up a brand new kitchen later down the track!”
They opted for oak-coloured floating floorboards, a Caesar-look white speckle benchtop, white cabinets with cupboards and draws, stainless steel appliances and a neutral coloured glass splashback. The finished kitchen is light and airy, and would attract any keen family cook!
Property value before renovation: $883,000
Final property value after full house renovation: $1,000,000
Rent pre-reno: $320pw - $16,640/year
Rent post-reno: $500pw - $26,000/year
Read the full article featuring
the step-by-step kitchen renovation
in the January 2019 edition of
Your Investment Property magazine
on sale at news agencies and
Coles supermarkets 6th Dec to 10th Jan
or download the magazine now.
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