I renovated my first flat in 2015… between the 27th November and the 6th January I went to Bath every weekend and got my hands dirty.
Here’s what I learnt:
- Walls need rubbing down where they are lumpy and bumpy (providing they aren’t papered), holes need to be filled with filler and the filler needs to be sanded down, with sandpaper, so it’s flush against the wall. The filler needs to dry properly before you do that.
- When painting, look at the walls in different lights. It’s very easy to miss a bit otherwise. Oh, and you need to do 2-3 coats.
- If you are changing the brass work on the doors, make sure to get new handles with the same screw positions otherwise it looks really messy.
- Old furniture looks great freshened up with chalky finish furniture paint. I found a bright white was the best colour.
- Storage heaters are full of bricks, when you dismantle them, they need a few people to get rid of them!
- Tiling requires more patience than I can handle, so I outsourced this.
- White spirit is great for getting paint out of clothes in an accident, but always bring a spare change of clothes to paint in
- If a toilet isn’t flushing properly, don’t be afraid to take off the lid and move the mechanisms around to get the water moving again. It’s seriously hard to break if you aren’t forcing!
- I enjoy flat pack furniture, it’s like building with legos. Don’t be afraid of it and if you need to super glue or hammer some parts together, so be it.
- Buy the pre-built kitchens from Howdens, it costs less to get the contractors to come and install it.
I’ve taken this with me… it’s good to get your hands dirty, it makes you appreciate what you should outsource and what you can show up and do yourself. It also gave me a huge appreciation for my builders!
So now I want to hear from you, does this help you? What have you learnt from doing your own refurbishments?
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