Q&A With a Renewal Homeowner

Tell us a little bit about your home:

“It was built in the 70s I think ’74. The original owner owned a lumber yard which is why there is so much wood! And also why everything seems to be really well built.  

We bought the home 2.5 years ago, it was in poor condition. The exterior was mint green with a turquoise roof. There was a chain-link fence around the property and a green bathtub in the yard!  

The interior was also in need of some love. There was no functioning plumbing upstairs and the overall home was quite run down… no doors on any of the closets (weird), and not a single matching door handle in the whole house!  

The previous owner was a single guy who purchased the house when he was 19 or 20 and lived here for 3 or 4 years. He was a fairly famous Youtuber & live-streamed his life playing video games from the house. 

We could tell the house had good bones but honestly, I thought it was too big of a project to take on. My husband was the one with the vision. There were a few houses we were considering & ultimately he got me on board by asking which one I was the most excited to DECORATE?!?! Decorating is my passion and the idea of transforming this house was super exciting for me.  

The house has these grey washed wood walls throughout. I really loved those walls and thought it would be fun to try to build around those – keeping some of the 70s vibe and lumber yard history of the house but bringing it more into the modern-day. 

Before Renewal we did quite a few other projects inside & out – mostly ourselves via sweat equity, haha! We hired out the construction to remodel the 3 bathrooms and had the house re-plumbed. (Our bathroom remodel was a total disaster & made me appreciate how great a job Renewal does even more).”

What was your vision for your home remodel?

“We wanted to transform the 2 largest spaces where we spent the most time – kitchen and living room. We knew we couldn’t do that ourselves so we were excited to work with Renewal on it!

For the kitchen, I wanted more counter space so my kids could spread out after school to do homework, have snacks, do crafts, etc. while we could still cook dinner, pack lunches at the same time. We also wanted to take better advantage of the pretty lake view and configure the eating space to have a view of the lake while still keeping it informal – which I think we achieved by changing the layout of the island.  

For the living area, we wanted to bring it out of the 70s by updating the old stone fireplace. I also wanted to integrate the cabinets into the fireplace (1 focal point vs. 2) and make the cabinets functional (the old cabinet was a pull-out unit full of plastic CD racks that had been turned into a makeshift wine cabinet… again, weird ). Even though I knew it had to go I was a bit sad to lose the coziness of the old stone on the fireplace so I wanted a more rustic mantle to warm up the room.

We also updated the front doors and glass to let more light in!”

What was your experience working with Renewal?

“Really really excellent! The project was managed very professionally and there was excellent communication throughout. Having done lots of renovation projects over the years I can definitely say this was, by far, our best experience.  

Also, everyone we interacted with was so kind – it feels like they have a family dynamic within their office that really comes through. They are all really nice and respectful of one another and their clients. During the initial stages of the project, my husband’s father passed away and they sent flowers – wow!”

How would you define your personal style?

“I would say I’m probably a bit of an “over-decorator”. I love playing around with all sorts of colors, textures, and patterns. What I love the most is mixing unique and personal elements into our home and creating little vignettes to give the space some personality & make it feel special for our family. Overall I think my style is contemporary casual (is that a style??!?). And maybe a touch on the eclectic side.  

For the remodel I knew that I’d want to add color and tons of accessories after, so I tried to keep the big elements more neutral and toned-down so that they would be easy to mix.”

What is your favorite feature of your home?

“I think it’s the kitchen fireplace! Which was a late addition to the plan, I think pulls the space together so well – and kicks some amazing heat that makes hanging out around the new kitchen island super cozy.”

How has the remodel allowed the house to feel more like a home for your family?

“The remodel transformed the places where we spend the majority of our time as a family. I love watching movies in the living room now and staring up at the beautiful fireplace focal point that surrounds the movie. The kitchen feels completely transformed, and has become the “heart” of the home – as a kitchen should be! We spend so much time in there now – baking, eating, doing homework, making crafts – the extra island space made such a difference!”

 Any advice for other homeowners considering a remodel?

“I would say go for it!” 

A special thank you to Melissa F. and her family for taking the time to share their experience with us! And for allowing us to help them on their journey to creating their dream home!

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