A beach condo reno is finished, on time and on budget

How a home was transformed without spending a fortune

A condo renovation is finished on time and on budget. Photo: Sheryl Novak
  • A condo renovation is finished on time and on budget. Photo: Sheryl Novak

I am pleased to announce we accomplished our goal.

For those of you following my column, we have been remodeling a beautiful waterfront condo in Mexico.

This three-bedroom unit was built and furnished in 2008. Our goal was to bring everything in on time and on budget so that the owners could list the condo for sale by Jan. 1, 2019.

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Completely furnishing a new condo or renovating an existing unit is always a challenge. Add to that the complexities of doing this in Mexico and you are sure to have your work cut out for you. We had our share of challenges on this project, but it all came together in the end.

As you can see from the pictures, you do not necessarily need to purchase different furniture to make your home look fresh and new. Without question, the painting of the existing dark chocolate colored furniture completely transformed the rooms. Furniture that is stained dark chocolate can look dated. Numerous pieces of dark colored furniture also tend to make rooms feel small. Whites, creams and light grays are in. They make everything look modern and spacious.

Since the cost to repaint furniture is less than buying new, this is how you can maximize your budget. One thing to keep in mind though is to ensure that the furniture you are repainting is made from good quality materials. You want to get a good return on this investment so only repaint if you know your furniture is well-made.

Another way we saved money and completely transformed this home was by repainting the walls. Instead of oranges and yellows, we went with neutrals, including cream and sand colors. This made the condo look enormous.

It also changed the focus of the condo from the too-bright feature walls to the beautiful ocean view. Now, when potential buyers come into the unit, their eye is immediately drawn to the million-dollar view, with the tranquility of the rooms as an extension of the experience.

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We allocated more of our budget towards recovering the cushions on the exterior double loungers, outdoor dining chairs and concrete sofas. Previously washed-out orange and red, the soft teal and sand colors in a combination of stripes, solids and prints add sophistication to this elegant home.

We upcycled the outdoor dining table to make it a unique signature piece. We removed the orange marble top and replaced it with a wood box top. Inside we added white sand and an assortment of shells and topped the wood with a thick piece of beveled-edge glass.

Décor and linens added the final touches. We chose crisp, white sheets and duvets that aligned to our beach décor theme for the beds. All the décor including artwork, hardcover coffee table books, and all décor items are beach themed. One of my favorite finds was the tic tac toe game made from shells and starfish that sits ready for use on the coffee table.

What a great way to end 2018 — the owners are thrilled with the results, and we are getting ready to select our next project. Happy New Year!

Sheryl Novak is an expat from Canada who has owned a home in Mexico for over 10 years. She is the owner of SOLutions Mexico, an online furniture store and an expert on sourcing all styles of furniture, for all budgets, in Mexico. 

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