Howdy folks! It’s Tuesday and it’s tear down time. Today’s house on 27th would be a great flip because it’s clean, has a lot gorgeous original detail and the list price is super reasonable. There are, however, two major dilemmas that need to be dealt with and no easy fixes for them. On the upside, I’ve included some inspiration photos to show you my vision for this house.
I know millennial pink is all the rage right now but I’m not sure this is the right shade. So a paint job is in order. I know gray with white trim would be the safe choice but I’d be tempted to paint it all white, especially if I needed to replace the windows and could get the new window frames in black. If’ I were designing this house for myself, however, I’d paint it all black or dark charcoal gray. Like in the picture below.
1286 sq. ft.
Listed for $449,000
The neighborhood in Oakland that 27th is in has been largely ignored in the last two housing bubbles. I’m not entirely sure why because the housing stock is great and it’s close to all the major freeways and public transportation. A lot of the houses in the neighborhood have bars on their windows and/or high fences around their property. Soooo…it’s going to be a while before this neighborhood gets hot. The upside is that you can still get a house for under $800k.
For all the reasons above, I think the buyers will either be a young, idealistic, childless couple or a family of modest means. The single bathroom is going to pose a real problem for either group. And this brings us to our first design dilemma: where to add a second bathroom? The bedrooms in this house are very small. Would it be worth turning one into a grand master bathroom? For this neighborhood, I don’t think it would be worth it. But, honestly, the only other place you can add a bathroom is the laundry room, just off of the kitchen. But it’s small so you’d probably have to steal some space from the kitchen. It’s a real head scratcher
Try not to look at the next picture quite yet. Let’s try a little Rorschach-like test (you know, the pictures of ink blots shrinks show you to reveal your inner self, true personality characteristics and diagnosis thought disorders). So look at the picture below and tell me what you see?
So, what do you see? Me: I see myself rolling around those gorgeous floors naked and eating chocolate chip cookies. Ha! I’m not even lying. Those floors slay me. Especially that inlay detail around the perimeter of the room. I would do anything to protect them. They do need to be refinished so they’re not so yellow. I’d stain them to look like the herringbone floors below.
The living room opens up to the dining room and this room is where we’d have to tackle the second design dilemma: to keep the fireplace or not? I know you think I’m crazy suggesting removing a fireplace but when you see it I think you’ll understand.
First, let’s talk about all the easy, wonderful details this space has and could easily be improved upon: paneling, coffered ceiling and the wood floors. My initial thoughts were to paint the walls white and then highlight the coffered ceilings like in the photo below.
But then I saw the next photo and was intrigued by the dark, warm gray. If we’re being honest though, I’d probably go with the all white like in the photo above. What about you?
Okay, enough stalling. Let’s get back to the fireplace dilemma. At the end of the day given the neighborhood and the cap on the potential profit, I would keep the fireplace because getting rid of fireplaces is expensive with a lot of potential, expensive unknowns. Plus, it might ruin the inlaid detail on the floor and I couldn’t abide that.
To finish off the dining room I’d put in a statement light fixture. As always, what I’d put in for myself would be different from what I’d put in a flip. For myself, I’d put in #1 or #2. For a flip, #3 or #4 in a black finish.
Kitchen & Laundry Room
So most people would see this kitchen and think “gut job!” And if you decided to take the fireplace out and put the 2nd bathroom in the laundry room, which is beyond the door way two photos below, then you’d probably be right.
The problem with turning the laundry room into a bathroom (aside from making the kitchen smaller) is then figuring out where to put the laundry.
As I was saying, at first blush this kitchen looks like a total gut job. The floors, counter and light fixtures would definitely have to go. But I’d take a moment to think about the cabinets. Their oak, they have that horrible detail on the doors and there’s a weird extension connecting the top of the cabinets to the ceiling. I submit to you, ladies and gentlemen, that a coat of white paint could potentially fix them. It’s a stretch and I could very well be wrong but I think it’s be worth considering.
Should the paint idea not work out. The next two pictures would be my inspiration for the new kitchen.
Okay, the bathroom is a gut job.
And here’s the inspiration, though I wouldn’t go so dark on the walls and floors.
All three bedrooms are real snooze-fests. #punintended But luckily, there’s not much we’d have to do to them beyond paint and swap out the light fixtures. Notice the floors again.
The louvered closet doors are tragic. While browsing through the Pinterest to find inspiration photos for the rest of 27th, I came upon on this great DIY technique to turn louvered doors into shiplapped-esque doors, like this (look beyond the ugly green). I would definitely try to do this to the doors in the first two bedrooms before buying new doors:
I’d try a similar technique on the closet doors below. The front door might also get this treatment.
So that concludes the tour of 27th St. What’d you think of the flip potential?
P.S. There were pictures of the backyard but since I have two brown thumbs and no ability to envision landscape, I opted to spare us both (you from seeing ugly pictures, and me the effort of trying to see the potential).