One thing that I think can really date a place and make it look old and tired are the light fittings. This place had a far from delightful selection including the kitchen fluorescent light that I think looked more suited to a garage, a range of batten fixtures that were starting to disintegrate when you took the globes out and a ceiling fan in the lounge that you could possibly date by cutting it in half and counting the layers of dirt that had built up each year. The other thing that you will notice in older places is that they are not designed for the 21st century lifestyle that constantly needs somewhere to plug in and recharge. The two individual power outlets in the lounge I think will struggle once you need to plug in the phone, laptop, tv, dvd player, PlayStation, lamp, heater, vacuum cleaner, personal foot spa etc, etc. So additional power points are a necessity. A knock on the front door at 8:30 am and in walks my new best friend for the day, Grant the electrician. Within about 10 minutes he had converted the majority of single power points to double outlets instantly improving the ability to power-up once you walk in the front door. Then up the ladder he goes to replace the kitchen fluorescent with a more modern and less intrusive kitchen light. 10 minutes later he’s removed the ceiling fan and is working on removing the wall control for it which is approximately the size of a small European car. A few replacement batten fixtures and he’s finished. Although batten fixtures themselves are not design features, I do like them in an investment property as they give you the flexibility to add whatever addition you like as far as light shades and fixtures go. There is an increasing amount of DIY fitting for batten fixtures and it gives you the option to easily update the look in the future as tastes change.
Whilst this was all going on and my offer to hold the ladder steady for the electrician was politely turned down, I got on with removing the tiles from the kitchen splash-back in preparation for a great new look next week. Fortunately the tiles were either put on in a hurry by a very lazy tiler or age had just worked its magic, as most of them came off easily with some gentle encouragement of just a few choice words. Tiles removed and electrician farewelled, I had a mirror awaiting installation in the bedroom that I purchased the other day. Now one thing I’ve started to notice is that in older places things often shift over the years and things are not always as square as they once were. I noticed this when taking the measurements to place the mirror in the correct position in the bedroom. Once I realised it wasn’t meant to go on the ceiling I installed it above the dresser and I think it looks a great improvement on the original (and smaller one) that was there.
At the end of some days I like to get a taste of what I have planned for the following day. Bedroom almost finished, tomorrow I need to start washing the walls and ceiling in the lounge so I thought I’d do a test patch. With the former owner being a pipe smoker I knew it would be noticeable but wow, I ‘m considering tomorrow bringing along the high pressure hose and just going nuts…if only the floor had drainage holes.
In tomorrow’s exciting installment we’ll see if I can get some poor sod to part with their hard earned money in order to buy 20 square metres of 30 year old carpet!