The ren­o­va­tion com­pany’s per­spec­tive

Winnipeg Free Press - Section G - - HOMES -

When project de­signer Ja­clyn Weibe and co-owner Tony Te­u­nis of All Cana­dian Ren­o­va­tions first vis­ited the home to be ren­o­vated they knew they had their work cut out for them.

“The base­ment was mostly un­de­vel­oped, dark, damp, and cold. Since the home­own­ers’ fam­ily was about to grow ex­po­nen­tially they needed to gain some fam­ily space be­fore their sum­mer wed­ding,” Ja­clyn ex­plains. “They wanted a wet bar, an en­ter­tain­ment area and fea­ture wall, a three-piece bath­room and sep­a­rate laun­dry room, all in 600 square feet!”

Ja­clyn con­tin­ued, “We also needed to hide some base­ment es­sen­tials such as the gas me­ter, wa­ter me­ter, fur­nace and tele­posts. This meant that the floor plan needed to be very well-con­fig­ured. As the de­signer, I took the wish list and got to work on the plans for the new lay­out.”

Prep work for the new space was def­i­nitely re­quired in or­der to make the lower level warm, dry and comfy. This is all of the ‘be­hind the scenes’ work you don’t see in the fin­ished project but that needs to be done prop­erly. Plumb­ing, wiring and proper in­su­la­tion are all im­por­tant el­e­ments of a good ren­o­va­tion.

“Now that the space was warm and dry, we added pot lights and ac­cent lighting and lux­ury vinyl plank floor­ing,” says Ja­clyn. “The vinyl plank was ideal be­cause it added the look of warm rus­tic wood with zero main­te­nance and since it’s thin­ner than other floor­ing op­tions it didn’t take away any of our pre­cious head clear­ance. I helped the home­owner se­lect ma­te­ri­als that co­or­di­nated and flowed well in the open space, such as tile, floor­ing, high-def­i­ni­tion lam­i­nate for the bar coun­ter­top and paint colours.”

The fea­ture wall in­cluded tile de­tail­ing, il­lu­mi­nated glass dis­play shelves, an elec­tric fire­place and stor­age for elec­tron­ics. (It also con­ceals ac­cess pan­els for the wa­ter me­ter.)

The bar area car­ries on the mo­saic tile de­tail­ing and has a sink and a bar-fridge. In the well-used bath­room (now to­talling two in the whole house) white wain­scot­ing was in­stalled as per Sherri’s re­quest which helped tie in the room with the char­ac­ter of the old house. A custom rail­ing was de­signed and in­stalled to re­place the old walls around the stairs, open­ing up the area fur­ther.

“In the end, 600 square feet feel open and spa­cious with the right lay­out. In all the base­ments I have worked on I have never seen one so well-used by all mem­bers of the fam­ily,” says Ja­clyn. and she made it hap­pen.

“I’ve al­ways wanted wain­scot­ting in the bath­room and Ja­clyn priced it out and told us it would not be much more at all. The con­trac­tor that they had on the job was amaz­ing with how we could talk about some­thing and then just make it hap­pen. He wasn’t afraid to share his ideas as well.”

Sherri and Mark were very pleased with their con­trac­tor. “There was a lot of tal­ent there. All the peo­ple that we had to deal with were cour­te­ous and re­spect­ful. As our wed­ding ap­proached I started to get a lit­tle fraz­zled and wor­ried about the progress. Tony came over him­self and calmed my con­cerns and told me that what I was feel­ing was very nor­mal and that they were on track,” said Sherri. “My ad­vice to other home­own­ers looking at ma­jor ren­o­va­tions is to be re­al­is­tic about their bud­get, get a few quotes, and look at past work and war­ranties that the com­pany of­fers.”

The cou­ple went from try­ing to en­ter­tain in their cramped liv­ing room/ din­ing room area up­stairs to hav­ing a gor­geous base­ment where they have had count­less get-to­geth­ers, fam­ily gath­er­ings and par­ties. The chil­dren, Kath­leen, Luke and Ce­leste, now have space to spread out and play.

“It re­ally has changed the en­joy­ment of our home so much. While we were ner­vous about the cost, we are now ex­tremely happy with the out­come,” Sherri beams.

By in­creas­ing their liv­ing space by al­most dou­ble, in­creas­ing the fam­ily size didn’t mean hav­ing to put up a for-sale sign and leav­ing the neigh­bour­hood the fam­ily loved. This newly blended fam­ily now has many new be­gin­nings to en­joy.

The home­own­ers were pleased to hear the base­ment ren­o­va­tion won Gold in the cat­e­gory of base­ment de­vel­op­ment in the Man­i­toba Home Builders’ As­so­ci­a­tion Ren­o­va­tion of the Year con­test. That is among many awards All Cana­dian Ren­o­va­tions has won over the years.

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