An Impressive Interior Revival in Matua, Tauranga

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Open-plan living room with feature timber

With a renovation years in the making, these Matua homeowners needed guidance and direction to finally achieve their interior design dreams.

Before After
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Finally getting on track

For the better part of eight years, the owners of this Matua property were planning to renovate their home. However, procrastination and decision fatigue prevented them from moving forward with their intentions. Their eyes were set on two main areas: the kitchen and living space.

The homeowners wanted a more modern, open-plan living area that would be less disruptive to the flow between the kitchen and lounge, and a renovated office and rumpus space located on the lower level. They lacked the design ideas and technical expertise needed to get their project moving, so they reached out to local Tauranga Renovation Consultant Sharon Giblett to help them bring their vision to fruition.

Concept designs and project feasibility

During the early planning stages, Sharon guided the homeowners through the concept and feasibility stages for both the upper and lower level renovations. The initial plans included everything off their high-level wish list, accompanied by an all-inclusive quote, which the homeowners then whittled down to suit their budget.

Sharon helped them prioritise which areas to work on first and which projects to put on the back burner – the living level updates took precedence. Moving on, they sifted through colour schemes and finishing choices until final selections were made. Sharon’s architect completed the initial concept designs, which included plans for the future downstairs renovations as well. Once those were approved, working drawings were submitted to the council. The future plans were submitted separately, so when the homeowners were ready to start on that, they could jump right in.

Setting the plans in motion

With the plans given the green light from council, Sharon coordinated an experienced team of skilled contractors and tradespeople to bring the plans to life, starting with the demolition. The crew uplifted the old flooring, removed a few dividing walls, and began rebuilding with a clean slate.

Because some of the old walls were load-bearing, new steel beams and lintels were installed to provide the necessary structural support, but they remained hidden to keep the new design seamless. Functional upgrades, like electrical work and plumbing, continued.

When planning a renovation, Sharon recommends to “always allow a contingency as there are hidden items that get uncovered during the build. But also, as projects unfold, clients often want to change or add additional items to the scope of work.”

The homeowners noted their existing water heater in the kitchen simply didn’t have the capacity needed to keep up with daily activity, so Sharon factored that into the plans. A new hot water cylinder, solely dedicated to the kitchen water supply, was installed to remedy the issue.

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A transformed home

The comparison between the original and new layouts is day and night. In addition to the removal of the divisive walls, the beautiful new flooring throughout the living areas creates a cohesive feel and enhances the natural flow as you move from room to room. But the flow doesn’t stop there. Bifold doors which incorporate a single door for quick access,  have replaced a dated sliding door and a stacked window combination.  These lead from the dining area to the garden and with the new decking which includes a step that doubles up as extra seating, connects the dining area to the outdoor entertaining area, enhancing indoor-outdoor flow.

While most of the interior is simple and streamlined, there are design details that bring a subtle hint of drama; the textured splashback with feature lighting, the scalloped island back panel, the sculptural pendant light in the dining area, and the handcrafted room divider with rimu veneer.

Successful results

The complete timeline includes 15 months of planning, a few months of waiting for council consent, and nine weeks of active construction. As with any renovation, there were challenges that needed quick thinking and nuanced knowledge to remedy, but overall, the project was a great success.

Having put the project off for nearly a decade, the homeowners are thrilled with the results and have left behind a fantastic review of their experience with Sharon and her team.

“It has been a pleasure to work with Sharon. She has amazing project management skills, which ensured we kept moving the project along and completed on time and to a high quality.”

Would you like to discuss your home renovation ideas?

Get in touch for a free consultation with your local Renovation Consultant.

This project was completed in
January 2024
Project description
Interior renovation
New Zealand
Project duration
9 weeks
Cost estimate
Actual cost
Interesting aspects
Modern design details
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Sharon Giblett is Managing Director/Renovation Specialist of Diamond NZ Ltd, a franchisee of Renovation Franchise Ltd, doing business in Tauranga.

Barry Brown is a Renovation Consultant of Diamond NZ Ltd, a franchisee of Renovation Franchise Ltd, doing business in Tauranga.

Catherine Constable is an Administration/Project Coordinator of Diamond NZ Ltd, a franchisee of Renovation Franchise Ltd, doing business in Tauranga.

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

Talk to a renovation consultant today

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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