A high-value whole house transformation in Laingholm, Auckland

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Having lived in their property for almost a decade, this homeowner was finally ready to invest in a renovation that would completely transform not only their home’s interior, but their day-to-day lives as well.

Before After
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Bringing in the professionals

After taking on a few DIY projects in her Laingholm property, homeowner Caroline was ready to enlist help from the professionals for her next project. She’d lived in the home for the better part of a decade and didn’t plan on moving for the foreseeable future, so she was ready to invest in the necessary upgrades to make the home more functional and comfortable. 

Caroline originally intended to renovate the kitchen and had met with other contractors who quoted her $25,000. Wanting additional opinions, Caroline reached out to Refresh West Auckland and was paired with Renovation Consultant Morag Burns and Project Manager Dominic Hollands who stepped in to discuss the project and ultimately manage Caroline’s expectations. 

Managing expectations

During their initial consultation, Caroline outlined her renovation goals; she’d spoken previously about renovating the kitchen but wanted to refresh the bathroom and laundry as well. Morag explained the $25,000 quote Caroline had received simply wasn’t realistic to achieve the full scope and used the Refresh concepting phase to illustrate exactly where Caroline’s investment would be spent. 

Morag and her in-house designer worked through four design iterations with Caroline, presenting different layouts and options each time. Caroline opted to go with a mid-upmarket finish for her project, which included an open-plan living area and new laundry. Although the cost to achieve this design was over double what she initially wanted to spend, Caroline was confident in her decision and saw the value in partnering with Refresh to execute her expanded renovation.

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Site access and scope expansion

Site access issues became apparent as construction began. There was no drive-on access to Caroline’s property and everything had to be transported down a series of steep gravel steps and paths. This, coupled with the fact that Caroline and her family remained living in the home throughout the renovation, made material storage difficult as well, but Dominic’s project management expertise overcame these challenges. 

As the project progressed, the scope morphed and expanded to incorporate more areas of Caroline’s home. In addition to the planned renovations, variations included painting the entire interior, laying new flooring, adding a butler’s pantry off the kitchen, and initiating extensive layout changes. Morag and her team pivoted seamlessly to accommodate these changes despite construction being underway. 

Upon demolition, the ground floor was reoriented. An existing bedroom was replaced by the new kitchen, and the old kitchen became the new lounge; a configuration which significantly improved the flow of the living areas.

A stunning transformation

The 12-week renovation yielded a truly transformative outcome. Caroline had worked for years to make sense of her home, but now, it worked for her and her family. While the final cost of $140,000 was well over what Caroline originally anticipated spending, the results far exceeded her expectations. What used to be an impractical layout with limited privacy has now reached peak functionality and style. 

The cosmetic updates are equally impactful; the new flooring installed in the hallway, stairs, master bedroom, living room, and kitchen creates a sense of cohesion and the colour palette was carefully curated with the team’s designers to evoke different moods throughout the home. 

A glowing review

Luckily Caroline didn’t take her normal route of DIY for this renovation because Morag and her team worked hard to deliver a fantastic result. And Caroline agrees:

“I would absolutely recommend Refresh. We're thrilled with our new renovation! Our property is very tricky to access, and Refresh managed the project with ease. It was a major renovation, and we were living in the house at the time. We love the end result.”

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This project was completed in
September 2023
Project description
Full home renovation
West Auckland
New Zealand
Project duration
12 weeks
Cost estimate
Actual cost
Limited site access
Interesting aspects
Clever details and impressive
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Dominic Hollands is a Franchise Owner of DJH Renovations Ltd, a franchisee of Renovation Franchise Ltd, doing business in West Auckland.

Morag Burns is Renovation Consultant of DJH Renovations Ltd , a franchisee of Renovation Franchise Ltd, doing business in West Auckland

Actual costs vary by project. Plan ahead to reduce the impact of industry changes or disruptions. For more information see here.

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If you would like to find out how Refresh Renovations can support you with a high quality, efficient home renovation, get in touch today. Your local Refresh consultant will be happy to meet with you for a free, no obligations consultation.

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