Thursday, March 31, 2011

Condo Renovation: Overhaul of a 20-Year Old Space (Kitchen Reno)

In this third part of this condo renovation series, we follow up today with Simon's kitchen renovation in the overhaul of his 20-year old condo unit.

Because Simon wanted to move in as soon as possible, the kitchen was first to be completed after preparation and teardown.

The kitchen before renovations

Contractors installed electricity and lighting, drywalls and tiling for the floors.  Aside from the fridge, all appliances and the kitchen sink remained in their original locations.  There were some unanticipated changes due to the placement of bulkhead, piping and wiring.  Cabinets were purchased from IKEA ($4,000) and granite countertops were ordered separately ($2,600), then installed by Simon himself.

Simon's Take on his IKEA DIY Kitchen: “It's similar to building
any other IKEA furniture – just follow the instructions.
Once the appliances were installed, the balance of the kitchen renovations were held off and completed towards the end of the project (e.g. backsplash and other minor items).  

The process:  IKEA provides kitchen planner software that allows a you to build and customize your kitchen, figure out exactly what to order and the costs involved. Exact measurements are key. Once the plan is finalized, a complete item list is created along with total cost. From there, you'd simply print the list and bring it in to IKEA. For Simon, most items were in stock though a handful of items had to be ordered from IKEA's Montreal warehouse (no additional charge). 

Once the kitchen was in a functional state, the next order of business was the installation of flooring.

Engineered hardwood flooring was installed through the main living areas.

Tiling was chosen for the foyer and bathrooms and installed by the contractor.  At the same time, Simon installed hardwood floor in the living room and bedrooms himself, replacing the original carpet.  Given the condo's requirement for the use of approved floor insulators, an inspection was completed by Condo Management while the installation was in progress.

Once all flooring was in place, the unit was painted, then baseboards and crown moulding were added by the contractors.

Simon's Take on DIY Hardwood Flooring Installation:

Installation of hardwood flooring is easy as long as you have the proper tools and know-how.  The total cost of flooring chosen was $4,000. Third-party installation quoted an additional $2 to $3 per square foot.  There are many websites which provide instructions (here's an example from Home Depot, one of thousands of online sites with DIY information). 

Tune in next week for the final part of this four-part installment when we discuss Simon's bathroom renovations.