Flip This Condo #8 - Budget Curb Appeal

We started with interior painting this morning - that will likely take the rest of the week. 

Yesterday was Sunday, and the whole AAAD family was in the city. 

We did some minor clean-up in advance of the painters arriving, and spent the afternoon trying to make the exterior look more inviting.

As far as curb appeal goes, that meant trimming some seriously overgrown hedges, putting down mulch and rock, removing mildew, and killing a LOT of weeds.

However, before we get too far into this update, let's take a look at what we've accomplished so far. 

It's been a pretty crazy two weeks:

1) FLOOR REFINISHING - Our floors were a sort-of-ugly orangey color.  

And more importantly, they were seriously beaten up. H&M Flooring Design took on the project and finished in three days. 

 2) BASEBOARDS - Our existing baseboards were 3.25 inches, and we wanted them to be larger. 

More importantly, the existing base was ALMOST all made of MDF/fibreboard, and over time, it had started to look degraded or warped, especially near doors where they may have been exposed to changes in moisture or humidity.  

I removed the existing baseboards, and our contractor Bob Krol was able to install the new all-pine baseboards over the weekend. 


All of this new trim makes the house look newer and refreshed - and frankly, a lot more high-end. 

Not only are the new trim boards more luxe, but you can tell that they were installed with more care. End pieces have caps in place, instead of just.... ending.

3) PAINT - This is happening now - we'll have before and after photos up in a future update. 

Suffice it to say, the place is going to look gray, with white cabinets to match the trim. 


If you've stuck with this post for THIS long, thanks. Here is today's main event. 

The exterior of the house had some serious issues.... multiple potential dealbreakers. 

The first (and most expensive) fix.... our concrete walkway was badly shifted.

It was basically a fun-house corridor. We had it torn out and replaced - this time, anchored to the foundation with rebar. 

The concrete is great! Everything else is a disaster.
We had some overgrown boxwood bushes pushing through the wrought-iron fence. 

We also had weed beds growing through the dirt (right side) and rock (left side) on both sides of the walkway.

Bottom line - it was not inviting, and gave a terrible first impression. 

Our first order of business was to trim back the bushes, and add a TON of mulch. 

These are extremely cheap fixes - we purchased 10 bags of mulch from Menards at $2 per 2 cu. ft. bag. 

20 dollars later, the dirt weed bed looked fantastic:

That bluestone patio needs work, though.
We were a little stumped about what to do with the other side of the walkway, though. 

It had ONE bush, instead of a line of them. 

And it had rocks, instead of dirt. 

So, we improvised, and made a symmetrical mulch bed -- 

 Three .99 cent edger stones, anchored to each other with construction adhesive -- and just like that, we had a new mulch bed.

Keeping the symmetry on both sides of the walkway looks a LOT better.

It also makes the transition between mulch and rock look intentional, as opposed to the haphazard mess we had previously.

It's subtle, but it was cheap. $25 and a couple of hours getting our hands dirty.

The last two "curb appeal" work will involve painting the wrought iron, and cleaning the patio - I'll be filling mortar joints, and cleaning/sealing the stone.

But this week, it's all about the painting. 


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