Chrome-Plated Lacquer Kitchen                    Poggenpohl/Houston



It is common knowledge in the real estate world that kitchens and bathrooms sell homes. If a home is more than 10 years old or has not been updated in the last 10 years, then applying even small changes to your current space can not only add value to your property but also can bring personal enjoyment of your updated living space.

Home life in 2013 reflects the very essence of life in the 21st century - as we are always plugged in to communication devices. There is an entire TV network (HGTV) dedicated to real estate, constantly educating would-be consumers on how to purchase a home, sell a home, decorate it and remodel it. Friends, neighbors and strangers share their stories, both good and bad, of home renovations on Facebook, Pinterest, and other blogspots and chat rooms. Don’t let your renovation project become an ordeal. Listen to these friends, neighbors and strangers, and follow this checklist to cruise through your renovation with flying colors, be it big or small.

Why start this renovation? Is it to increase the property value or just improve functionality of the existing space? Don’t over do it for resale, and don’t go cheap because you will live in it for years to come.

Resist the urge of using a “handy man” that lives down the street. This may save money initially but will spend more down the road tending to his mistakes and short cuts. HIRE A REPUTABLE CONTRACTOR OR DESIGNER. YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR. Have them help you select the right materials and put together an aesthetically pleasing functional space that suits your needs and increases the home value.

DO NOT PUT LIPSTICK ON A PIG! Installing granite countertops onto the old cabinetry is exactly that. This is not resolving your dysfunctional issue, it is covering it up! Be prepared for the unknown. Your contractor may open a can of worms during the project, like termite damaged studs, or prior poor workmanship in repairs. These issues will have to be addressed. A good contractor will bring any of this to your attention. And yes, it can cost extra, so plan for the unexpected.

Hire properly and build a solid relationship with your contractor or designer.

Project #1 West University Renovation by Jeanine Nuzzi

This project was a complete renovation. It started as a one story originally and we added a second story. They wanted the exterior of the home to keep with the traditional look of the other homes in the neighborhood. The goal for the interior was a sleek modern European feel. Marisa Janusz with Janusz Design did the building design and was able to capture the feel quite well. Gabriel Home Builders did the renovations.

Part of the owner’s vision was to have a kitchen with European high gloss cabinets. When they started pricing the project, the cost for that type of cabinet was increasing the cost of the project beyond their budget. In order to help keep the owner within the budget, they decided to settle on a sleek job built cabinet with a high gloss lacquer finish. However, the thought of the European cabinet was always on the top of their wish list. The goal for our clients was to help get them what they want while maintaining a budget. I approached Cheryl Carpenter, who is the general manager and designer with Poggenpohl. The timing could not have been better. Poggenpohl had just come out with a value line of high gloss laminate that was a little less expensive, but would meet their needs. We made a few adjustments in design details and were able to get the owner the kitchen they wanted with just a small increase in cost. In the kids room, where they wanted similar cabinet finishes we were able to use wood and a high gloss paint to further offset costs.project_redo1

“Gabriel Home Builders did an extensive remodel project on our home in West U. We completely renovated the existing one story home, and we added a second story. Whenever issues arose (and you will inevitably have issues come up when you are remodeling a house built in 1945!), Jeannine and Brad always had solutions and options ready for us to discuss and consider. Before embarking on this big project, I had always heard how stressful remodeling or building a new house can be. ” West U resident. For more go to www.gabrielhomebuilders.com



Project #2 Total Remodel in Meyerland by Lana Vallet

Home Here is a house in the Meyerland area that we recently renovated. No updates had been done since the home was built in 1967. The house was stripped down to the studs to allow for replacement of all mechanical systems, electrical wiring and plumbing. Nearly everything in the house was replaced – sheetrock, flooring, cabinets, counters, light fixtures, plumbing fixtures, doors, etc. The foundation was repaired and sewer pipes were replaced. When the home was resold, the new buyers moved into a virtually new house, for half the cost of a new construction home in the area. Total time to complete the project was 7 weeks.




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By Lana Vallet