Location
Client
Annie and Ian (aka Chook) Fowler
Time
May 2016
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Wanting to create a light and airy apartment kitchen with lots of storage proved easy with the help of Refresh Renovations. 

WORDS Persephone Nicholas

The kitchen in Annie and Ian (aka Chook) Fowler’s investment apartment was small, dark and inconvenient. So much so that the Fowlers’ tenants had their fridge, which was too large for the kitchen, stuck in the living room!

So when Annie Fowler met with Diana May, renovation specialist at Refresh Renovations, to discuss renovating the kitchen, she had a very clear brief: to create more space (including extra storage), bring in more light and replace the dated old kitchen with a new one that would appeal more to their tenants.

While the brief was clear there were a few challenges too. The apartment was on the fourth floor and all the renovation companies Annie had contacted were reluctant to take it on, knowing that everything that came out of or went into the new kitchen had to be transported in the building’s lift.

Diana was aware of this and also understood that the renovation had to be turned around quickly, must comply with the strata company’s rules and cause minimal inconvenience to other residents in the building. She took it all in her stride and says the first step was designing the layout of the new space.

Creating a house renovation plan and design

“We produced a concept design quickly, which met Annie’s brief and met the tenants’ requirements too. The plan involved some demolition to create a lot more storage space, open out the apartment and create more light,” says Diana.

She added that Refresh Renovation’s strong relationships with suppliers enabled her to coordinate a project plan that would deliver the project fast. Annie’s willingness to put her trust in Diana helped save time too.

“Annie has a very busy life and because this was an investment property, she really needed someone to take control and get the job done with the minimum effort on her part. We had a tight deadline to complete the kitchen and needed to make selections quickly. So we gave Annie a very short list of classic finishes that would be appropriate for her property and not go out of fashion. She trusted our judgement and that helped us move very quickly.”

Working closely with suppliers was important. “We ensured that when we showed Annie our shortlist of recommended finishes, fixtures and fittings, we’d already checked that they were in stock with our suppliers. So when she chose her benchtop, for example, it could be delivered and installed straight away.”

Completed kitchen renovation with classic finishes with a contemporary twist.

The benefits of working with a Refresh Renovations franchise

It’s amazing to think the whole project only took a month!

Annie says Diana always tries to get the best deals for her clients, which helps keep the renovation costs down.

Diana says it’s all part of her Refresh approach. “Our construction manager, David, has extensive industry experience and uses it to ensure our suppliers give us the best pricing. He micro-manages every stage of the project plan and built to minimise time and cost for the client.”

Just one month after their first meeting with Diana, Annie and Chook’s kitchen renovation is complete. The new kitchen is light and airy with plenty of room for food preparation and storage. Sleek white cabinetry is complemented with white benchtops, stainless steel tapware and door handles, and a new island unit that provides extra storage and more work surface area too. The floor is finished with large stone-effect tiles and the entire area gleams under modern track-style lighting. The couple’s tenants love the kitchen’s contemporary good looks and improved functionality, but classic finishes mean the kitchen won’t date.

Annie and Chook are delighted with their renovation too. “It’s fabulous. The new kitchen makes the apartment seem much more spacious and appealing. It’s amazing to think the whole project only took a month!”

The focus of Refresh Renovations is on delivering excellent customer service and value by incorporating design and using world class systems and processes. If you're thinking of renovating or looking for a builder, talk to Refresh at +64 9 33 60 33 or enquire online.