Thursday, 15 October 2015

When you don't love the look of your house | Exterior Paint Refresh


When we were sort of poking around at the available real estate in our new town, not quite ready to buy, but too excited with the prospect of moving to the area we had spent the last five summers (aka our happy place on Pigeon Lake) we kept coming back to this one neighbourhood. It is a small neighbourhood, not walking distance to anything and definitely rural, but it captured us!  We had a real estate agent and looked at a few homes in the area, telling ourselves we were just scoping our neighbourhoods, you know for down the road - likely next year - that would be more ideal.

But then our friends mentioned that they knew of a house in the neighbourhood we love that would be going up for sale - things got super exciting!  Especially after I called the owner and asked if he would be willing to do a private sale (not my best idea, ever but that is a story for another day) and he was open to it!

We arranged to go and see the house and did a couple of drive bys, in the mean time.  We also googled it as we had heard the owner had only owned it for a year.  Guess what, we found the old listing!  The house read like it would work, as far as rooms and space was concerned, better than anything that we had looked at up until now.  Not too big and not too small!  Are you thinking Goldilocks? ha!  But boy was it dated inside!

While we waited for our viewing, we made a list of things that we would want to do to the house, and attached a dollar figure to each.  We used that as a tool to get us to a figure to put into an offer if we ended up loving it.

We were pleasantly surprised when we went to view the house, many of the things on our "wish" list had been completed!  The floral wall paper was replaced with neutral paint,  the carpet in the main rooms had been removed and swapped out for a nice laminate that we could live with, the heating system (electric) had been updated with high efficiency units, and the appliances had all been replaced - all steps in the right direction!

But (and there is always a but!) it didn't look like I wanted it to from the outside.  It is really just a matter of personal choice, but all during the "dreaming of our future home" phase, I was picturing something else, and something much more grey (my most recent fave neutral colour), so this very orange-y home wasn't quite doing it for me.

But there was so much to love, a fenced and treed yard that backs onto forested space (read no backyard neighbours), a large lot of 150'x100' (very large for us city folk), the community is on the lake and the house includes a boat dock, and access to a private beach!

So we bought it! With so much going for it, we couldn't resist and besides, we always love putting our own stamp on our homes!

One of the first things we tackled after we moved in, on July 27th, was a bit of a low budget refresh for the front of the house.  Paint is the most basic of DIY's and a super economical way the change the look of a place!  Remind me to tell you what happened to our reno budget, one day.

We picked up some exterior colour swatches from Home Depot and tried to match one of the suggested colour combos up with our brick and siding colour, as they are not ever going to be changed (unless we win the lottery).  This was actually very easy to do, we found a good match in Behr's exterior colour collection, and the colour swatch book suggested coordinating colours.  As luck would have it some of the colours they suggested were green and cream, two colours that we love!

 Corral Brown - very close to the brick and siding colour

 New Harvest Moon - I was a little afraid this might be too dark, but Ian was totally feeling it - of course he was right!  We used this on the shutters and garage door.

Potting Moss - we love mossy greens, this one is perfect for the front door! And the back door, and the back garage door and the inside of all the doors, we are trying something other than the traditional all white on the inside of the exterior doors, and are loving it!

This is the "after" photo, it looks more cheerful and inviting to us!  And so not orange! The garage door was in pretty rough shape and took several sanding sessions from Ian.  He also gave them a good coat of Kilz prior to painting.  The shutters housed hundreds of wasp nests behind them - ewwww!  Thankfully they were not inhabited at the time!  Ian picked up a paint spray about a hundred years ago, and had never taken it out of the box.  He pulled it out for the shutters and he did a great job with them, he painted up the 12 shutters in no time!

We still have loads on our wish list, such as: lighting, a garden, a seating area (we are porch lovers and as you can see there is definitely no porch), less weeds and more grass in the lawn and a new screen door but it will come one project at a time, and as the budget allows.

For now, it is a happy and homey looking house to come home to!

Thanks for visiting!
Ian and Laura

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