I recently under took a huge renovation on a tiny duplex rental property in Durham, NC. I’ve had a small obsession with real estate for many years and being involved in real estate photography only fuels the fire. I was finally able to dive in to the deep end with this property purchase and do a full renovation. It was not pretty; it’s highlights include extensive wood paneling, bugs, filthy pink carpet and layout issues. With only 450 square feet per unit, taking time to put thought into how daily living would take place makes all the difference and makes for a much more desirable end product!
When we started, not only was the refrigerator half way in front of the sink, but there was no counter-space and what was there was full of left behind tenant stuff. We removed all the wood paneling in the entire place and that immediately brightened up things. To solve the refrigerator/sink issue (after extensive hours spent in tweaking things in Homestyler) we decided to shift the bedroom door to from next to the wall to the center, creating a galley kitchen layout. This not only was a rather small structural change, but it gave the refrigerator a good location and allowed for another section of lower cabinetry and counter space.
Kitchen Photos Before:
White open shelves white chrome hardware were installed above the new counter space keep the kitchen from feeling like “Holy wall of cabinets, Batman!” The upper wall cabinets add much needed storage and are 42″ high– all the way to the 8 ft ceiling– to utilize every inch of storage possible. LED lighting over the sink and as primary kitchen light is not only energy efficient but keeps it feeling light and bright inside. The counter tops are a durable laminate that adds some visual interest to the white cabinetry. To round out this awesome kitchen update, we made sure to include all the great modern basic items like dishwashers, disposals, over the range microwaves.
Kitchen Pictures After:
The before exterior is highlighted by overgrown trees, vines and a beautiful shade of green paint accented by red shutters.
We updated the siding paint to a nice medium gray on the siding with white trim and dark purple front doors. We also add a darker gray on the foundation to give some visual separation. The landscaping and trees were cleared out and cleaned up to let some sun inside the units.
Update: Check out the next post on the Bathroom and Laundry updates to the Tiny Duplex!