This article was written by Refresh Renovations. The Refresh & Zones Renovation Centre is launching soon at Home Ideas Auckland
Lined with rows and rows of quaint villas, the streets of Auckland’s central suburbs sometimes look like they’re still in the 1910s. From investors to first-home buyers, villas seem to charm every gazing eye.
But while they’re charming, villas often need renovating to improve their curb appeal and integrate modern features that improve functionality and overall value. In doing so, retaining the character isn’t easy, and neither is completing the renovation successfully.
Whether it’s only one room of the villa or the entire house, renovations are major endeavours - but the final destination is worth it. So, to help you along your journey, we’ve compiled our top tips for villa renovations.
One of the first (and most important) things you can do when starting your renovation is to set a realistic budget. From design to construction, you need to be prepared for potentially unnerving setbacks and unexpected discoveries. The older your villa is, the more likely you are to have these issues.
When setting budgets, the main things to count for are the scale of your project, desired materials, and a safety net for the unexpected challenges that can come with villas.
It’s also wise to budget for high-quality, durable materials. Although they may come with a heftier price tag, they’re likely to extend the lifespan of your home and cost less in the long run.
Don’t rush into your renovation; get to know the villa first!
By spending time in your villa, you learn everything about it, including how the sun travels around the space and which rooms are darker than others. Knowing these less apparent details of your villa is essential for renovating, so you can plan to enhance natural features.
For example, many villas have large bay windows. But not all windows of a house get the same amount of sunlight at the same time. By determining when and for how long your bay windows capture the sun, you can make practical decisions with spatial planning to make the most of natural light. Consider installing bench seating by a bay window with great morning sun to create a nook to enjoy your morning coffee.
Image: Refresh Renovations
All classic villa designs have ornate characteristics that set them apart from other forms of housing, like bungalows. It’s important to restore these features if you want to maintain the home's character.
Symmetrical and intricate, porches are a remarkable feature of all villas. The highly decorative fretwork that laces around the villa’s exterior is a beautiful aspect to restore for aesthetic and resale purposes. For a final touch, consider draping vines or flowers around the top to further revive the villa’s original charm.
Hardwood flooring is another important feature to restore. Floorboards can be repaired, sanded, stained, and varnished to suit stylistic desires. Additionally, it’s smart to consider installing underfloor insulation to reduce draughts and dampness. Overall, renovating your villa’s flooring can not only increase functionality but also enrich and restore its character.
Image: Refresh Renovations
If you’re renovating for an investment, make it desirable to a wider range of potential buyers by making it more spacious. Kitchen extensions and open-plan renovations are popular additions for homeowners. Not only do they create a more spacious environment for growing families, but they also increase resale value.
As the heart of the home, large kitchens are on many homeowners' wish lists. Providing more space to cook, dine, and entertain, kitchen extensions benefit the home environment in many ways.
What’s more, open-plan living can further enhance your kitchen area. But to a greater benefit, this layout style will make the house feel bigger and create room for other additions, like a large dining area or statement lighting installation.
Image: Refresh Renovations
The desire to modernise often calls for the use of a minimalist colour palette used throughout a home. Colour-wise, whites and earthy neutrals are among some of New Zealand’s most popular paint choices.
However, a maintained colour scheme is not the only option. Many Auckland villa owners choose to create different atmospheres for each room to enhance the character of their villas. For example, office spaces can be transformed into traditional libraries using a darker colour palette. Beyond wall paint, you might customise your flooring with new staining to pair perfectly with the interior. The opportunities are endless.
When it comes to the exterior, rejuvenate your home with whites, soft greys, and maybe a splash of varied pastel colours. Using this palette is a great way to freshen up the classic villa design while adding value to your property.
Image: Habitat by Resene
If you have no qualified building experience, don’t attempt to renovate yourself - professional project management can actually save you time and money.
When you enlist the help of an expert, like a Renovation Partner from Refresh Renovations, they will guide your villa renovation to an exceptional finish.
With a Renovation Partner coordinating the tradespeople, council contents, and required admin, you can sit back and enjoy the process stress-free.
If you’re ready to get inspired, visit Home Ideas Auckland (Open from Level 2)