Home renovation plans – dreams or reality?

Right peeps, in it to win it and all that I have BIG plans for some home renovation. I had them the moment I laid eyes on this house. In fact I even said to the Mr, I’m only buying if we can do this, this and this. He said ok and although I was aware my dreams would cost big money I was prepared to wait after all, it’s not like you move house every five years is it?

So after a fair bit of squirreling away the money was saved and it was time to get some quotes in. I got one from a local builder who everyone speaks very highly of, see his blog for yourself. That was at the beginning of the summer. The quote came back at around £9000 for the complete project with no new kitchen – that would be extra and then the Mr and I went on holiday to France.

A few glasses of wine, oysters and lots of moules marinieres and we found ourselves talking about getting married! We’ve been engaged for years and a wedding has always been put to one side because of the expense involved, money that could be spent more wisely elsewhere, right? (like home improvement for example)

Wrong! The more we talked the more our wedding came to life and then he came out with.

‘Well you can’t have the home improvement AND a wedding, you’re going to have to choose.’ Damn.

I went for the wedding, I don’t know why, I just thought it would be a good idea and so my home improvement plan was put to bed for a while longer. *sigh*

Then TOTS 100 announced that ratedpeople.com were offering £2500 for the best home improvement project. They threw down a challenge for bloggers to take up.

Tell us which room in your home you’d like to transform, and how you’d do it, and you could be in with a chance of winning£2,500 worth of tools, materials and expert tradesman advice. RatedPeople.com will provide you with the tradesman and pay for his/her time – and there’s no rush – we’ll be there when you’re ready to start your project

It is far too good for me not to try, after all should the judge, Fiona Fullerton just nip down and take a look she could see for herself how my idea would look simply beautiful and so practical too. Take a look at my Kitchen Pinterest board where I’ve been collecting ideas

Kitchen Pinterest board

The area I have my eye on is the main living area, the heart of the home where we spend the majority of our time as a family. In a nutshell I’d like to knock down the wall separating the living room from the kitchen and put in those fabulous sliding patio doors, you know the concertina ones that look really cool leading onto the patio.

In order to do this the kitchen will need to be moved back to it’s original home and I’d keep it all open plan, which is the choice of most interior designers these days and because that area is quite small, well I’d need to knock down another wall, make the bathroom smaller and ideally fit in a utility area because that would be so damn posh wouldn’t it?

bathroom pinterest board

As for the bathroom it’s very tired, it will need a complete overhaul.

So, that brings me on very nicely as to how I will spend my £2500 should I win.

I think the only way to make this project do-able is to break it down into smaller parts and I think as much as I’d love the open plan bit completed like yesterday I’m going to have to settle for the bathroom for now.

  1.  Rip out the whole lot; tiles, fake dropped ceiling, old bathroom suite and floor. I would only keep the boiler as it works and that would cost £2500 alone to change
  2. Change the two windows as the double glazing is blown.
  3. If I can – knock out the fake walls housing the shower and sink. Replace with a glass shower which drains directly into the floor with one of those large rose heads that are so pretty.
  4. Add a large sink unit which attaches to the wall but has no pedestal allowing for easier cleaning. This is a well used bathroom as part of the main living area.
  5. Rip down the formica homing the boiler and home with something less ‘In-Yer-Face’ and possibly construct a cupboard to home cleaning products and so on.
  6. Re-tile the entire bathroom in delightful bright, luminous and modern ceramics

So surely ratedpeople.com could come and take a look? Surely they could tell me the best way to use my space and be able to tackle this project in three stages to make it easier to accomplish? They could advise me on where to get windows, the best bathroom suites and which tiles would illuminate the space to the best advantage.

And when that’s all over maybe we could look at decorating the hall and stairway too but that’s another blog post.

So there you have it TOTS 100, that’s my plan. Can you help?

ratedpeople.com renovation

Disclosure: The video has been made with the fabulous Panasonic V700 camcorder that I have on loan and I still haven’t discovered all of it’s uses yet. It’s a beauty to work with


  1. zaggora girl
    October 19, 2012 / 3:56 PM

    Looks like you’ve got a lot of work on your plate if you start doing up the rooms! :) What motiavted you to want to change your living room, and how is it at the moment? :)

  2. Mari
    October 19, 2012 / 4:22 PM

    It’s a work in progress. I love open plan rooms and I really want to be able to cook and keep an eye on the girls whilst they do homework or be able to talk with the family whilst in the kitchen getting food ready. Right now I have to run from one room to the other to keep an eye on them

  3. Becky Goddard-Hill
    October 19, 2012 / 11:21 PM

    Love your pinterest bathroom board…good luck!

  4. Adam Walker
    November 9, 2012 / 11:31 AM

    Hello Mari

    Rated people would like to thank you for taking the time and effort to post this brilliant blog and video for the Tots 100 competition. Lots of great ideas and really interesting pinterest board.
    Thank you
    Regards Adam Walker

  5. Brian Turner
    November 27, 2012 / 8:19 PM


    I have a quick question about your blog, do you think you could e-mail me?


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