Renovation Journey: An Amazing Metamorphosis
At A Glance
- Suzzane and her husband
- Location: Kim Cheng Street
- Size: 93 sqm / 1,000 sqft
- Cost of renovation: $90,000
- Cost of furnishing and appliances: $15,000
- Interior design firm: Metamorph Design
- Interior Designer: Kavin
The proverb goes “once bitten, twice shy”. Since Suzzane and her husband had a bad experience with their first renovation, they were determined to find a trustworthy and reliable interior designer who they could count on to get the job done.
We get Suzzane to share about how Kavin eased her renovation journey and find out from her about the aspects of renovation that homeowners should pay attention to.
Qanvast: What were your thoughts going into the renovation?
Suzzanne (S): This is our second experience with home renovation and this time around, we wanted it to be more hassle-free since our previous renovation was done on a large scale – hence taking up a lot of time, effort and money. While we had initially thought of purchasing a resale flat that was in better condition, we fell in love with this house once we saw it as we could see the potential that it contained. The layout of the home is rather squarish which makes it easy for the interior designer to work around with.
Qanvast: Why did you decide to enlist the services of Kavin from Metamorph Design?
S: Out of all the interior designers that we met, Kavin’s designs met our expectations and we felt that his quotation was reasonable. We also liked that he was very upfront about the costs involved. He broke down the costs for us so that we knew what we definitely needed to have and what we could do without.
Qanvast: It sounds like you highly value the transparency of Metamorph Design.
S: Yes, we did. The interior designer that we hired to renovate our previous place wasn’t very transparent in his dealings. There were a lot of mysterious charges involved and we were quite unhappy about it. Kavin was very different from our previous designer as he was very transparent and we had no doubt that he was being fair in all his offerings.
Qanvast: How did Kavin customise your home to suit your needs?
S: As my husband works in the IT field, he has a lot of computer monitors and a computer server that he needs to fit in the study room. To store a computer server of that size, one would have to purchase a server rack which costs around $8,000.
We approached Kavin to see if he had any suggestions and he said that his carpenter could build a special cupboard for my husband to store his server. So we proceeded with that and we were quite pleased with the results as the carpenter was able to build a cupboard with built-in fans. I think it came up to around $1,500 which was significantly much cheaper than what we would have paid if we had purchased a server rack from a retailer.
Qanvast: What are Kavin’s best qualities as an interior designer?
S: Kavin was very easy to work with as he listened to what we wanted and wasn’t pushy about his ideas. In fact, he was very sporting and was open to the idea of us making changes to his design. For instance, he suggested some designs on the TV console which we felt that we did not need. We told him that we did not want to do that and he took it like a sport.
Kavin also has good project management skills. He would check in with us regularly and update us about the renovation works that’s going on. He would also seek our approval at every juncture before proceeding with the renovation. We mostly just left it to him to handle the renovation.
Qanvast: What is one aspect that you think homeowners should pay particular attention to when renovating their homes?
S: Homeowners should give much thought to the position of the electrical outlets as nobody wants long extension cords all over the place! It is important to have electrical outlets around the home so that it is easy to find a power outlet to plug your vacuum cleaner in when you are doing the vacuuming.
Most people nowadays also work off their laptops so it makes sense to have power outlets at the dining table, beside the bed and near the couch.
Qanvast: That makes perfect sense. Any other things homeowner should take note of?
S: When it comes to the kitchen, homeowners should think about where they want their storage to be in relation to the workflow in the kitchen. So for instance, they may want to consider placing the pots and pans underneath the stove so that they can easily take them out for cooking. They should also store their cups near the place where they make tea. Having the right things in the right spot is really important in the kitchen.
Qanvast: Finally, what are some areas that homeowners should not scrimp on?
S: Wiring. It’s important to get a good electrician. In my previous home, the electrician botched up the wiring and there were a lot of lights that didn’t work. To solve that issue, you would definitely have to hack the wall or ceiling to redo the wiring. It definitely taught me that you cannot scrimp on foundational work such as this.
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