Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Tour Tuesday - Holladay Kitchen Miracle

I just listed a fabulous house in Holladay. It is a classic red brick rambler on a cul de sac and it backs up to a church, so the backyard is totally private. When the homeowners first called me about selling the house I looked at the photos on the MLS from when they bought the home. It was cute, but dated. The homeowners told me they had remodeled the kitchen so I was expected some improvement but I was not expecting what I saw...it was more of a miracle than a remodel.

This is the kitchen before:



The homeowners wanted to open up the kitchen, add an eat in bar and desk area, all without changing the footprint of the house. That is a tall order, but they pulled it off with A LOT of style. Here is what they came up with:


They incorporated this huge island so that there would be plenty of prep area and in kitchen seating.


They loved the look of carrarra marble but they felt like the soft stone was too high maintenance for their counters so they used a slab of the marble in the backsplash. I LOVE it.



Finally, they wanted to include a workstation - which I think fits in seamlessly.


They also did a remodel on the dining room/family room. Here is what it looked like before:


And here is the after:



There are three bedrooms on the main and all of them have huge closets and the basement has tall ceilings, both unusual for a house this age. It is a great home, looking for a great new owner - let me know if that is you!

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Portland Has Nothing On Us

We went to Portland two summers ago and one of my favorite things about the city was the line of food trucks in the middle of the city. There were TONS of them and the food was great - best hummus I ever had! It made Portland seem so cool. So I was very excited when I heard that Salt Lake has it's very own food truck gathering. I thought it was my own little secret I could share with all of you. It turns out the food trucks were only a secret from me - as you can see from the photo below, lots of people know about them.

The food trucks gather at the Gallivan Center every Thursday from 11 AM to 2 PM. (The Gallivan Center is at 239 Main Street, but the food trucks are on the State Street side of Gallivan). My friend and I met at the Gallivan at 11:30 and a few of the trucks already had a long line. By the time we left at 12:45, every truck had a line. So go early, or maybe late, most of the customers are professionals from nearby office buildings.


There are nine food trucks that rotate at the Gallivan every Thursday. You can find out which trucks will be there each week by following the Food Truck Thursday Facebook page.

The Cupbop Korean BBQ truck had the longest lines and the most exciting truck, there was chanting and shouting (happy shouting) the entire time we were there. The A Guy & His Wife Grilled Cheese had the next longest line. We didn't eat at either one but the food coming out of both looked great.

We settled on the Grub Truck and we both got delicious street tacos. There are a few tables to sit at, and plenty of benches and room on the stairs.



The food trucks are definitely worth a visit downtown!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Tour Tuesday - Remodelers Roundup

Today's tour is a little bit of a cheat. Rather than a tour of one of my client's homes, or the rock home of a total stranger, it is a round up of my favorite online remodelers. There are A LOT of bad DIY remodels out there. I can't tell you how many times I have walked into a house and thought, "I wish they would have just left it." It is way harder to fix a bad remodel than to start from scratch.

These bloggers do a good job of walking you through how to do things right, telling you when to call a professional and when to just leave things be, all on a budget.

The Yellow Cape Cod is my favorite remodel blog. I only wish that Sarah (the designer behind the Yellow Cape Cod) would move. That way she could start over with a new house so I could see what she would do next.

The room makeovers section of her blog is my favorite. She does a lot of great things with paint and simple upgrades like this laundry room:



And she is great at styling a room using existing furniture, which is really helpful when are getting ready to sell.



But she really kills it in the room makeovers. I copied these two rooms for my own kids.



The best part is she gives you step by step instructions on how to complete the rooms. I wish all home sellers would read her blog before listing their house.

Young House Love is another favorite remodel blog. This young couple has bought and remodeled two homes and they are working on their third home. I started following them a few years ago - they now have a book and a line of home decor at Target!

Start here and you can tour all three of their houses. They do some huge projects like this kitchen:



And a lot of smaller projects like this entry:



Best of all they show you projects "in progress". They move pretty quickly to make their house livable but then they keep working on each room to get it exactly where they want it. They also share their remodeling to do list. It is almost as much fun to watch them cross items off their list as it is to cross items off your own.

Enjoy these great blogs - I would love to hear if you have a favorite!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Tour Tuesday - This House Rocks!

We spent a long weekend in Moab and as we were driving through Kane Creek Canyon we passed this crazy little house. The house comes out about 8 feet from the rock wall and the rest of the house is actually in the rock. There is even a sweet little one car "garage" - made of solid rock.



On our way back down the canyon I stopped and asked if could see the house. Ross, the lovely gentleman who rents the house was happy to give me and two of my kids the grand tour.

First Ross showed us the cave behind the "garage'. There was a huge carpet hanging in front of the car, and behind that was a giant cavern. Ross told us the cavern was originally created to house chickens. That seemed like a lot of rock to blast for some chickens, but Ross explained that the temperature in the cavern was a consistent 45-50 degrees. So the chickens never got too cold or too hot.


Now the cavern is more of a giant storage room. (Yes, I  did worry that I was in a dark cavern with two of my kids, a total stranger and a bunch of deadly farm tools. I ran all the worse case scenarios - but my husband and one of my older sons was a few minutes behind us on dirt bikes and I figured they would see our car and stop to save us.)



In the photo above, Ross is standing next to the back door that goes from the cavern into his house. Ross says the house was originally the "egg house" where they would check to see whether or not the eggs were fertilized before selling them.


The inside of the house is rustic but totally functional with a full kitchen and bathroom. But this is a case where location, location, location really comes into play. This is the view of the Pot Ash Cliffs out of Ross' front yard:


Charlie, the man who owns Ross' home, owns 700 acres around the house. At the foot of these cliffs is the Colorado River. There is a sandy "beach" in this area and it is private, available only to those who rent from Charlie.

If that view isn't enough, the house also houses some important history. On the wall next to the garage are Native American petroglyphys:


And on the other side of the house is a rock formation where you can still see where Native Americans carved hand holds in the rock to climb so they could climb to the top.


So, if you are ever driving through Kane Creek Canyon (and you should - it is beautiful), stop and say hello to Ross and take a little tour.


Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Tour Tuesday - Remodel with a 203K Loan


My cute clients moved home to Utah after living in China with their four kids for 3 years. They are handy and were hoping to gain some instant equity by buying a fixer upper and doing the work themselves. We found this darling home in Midway, where their kids would have lots of room to roam. It looks so cute it is hard to believe it needed any fixing up, but once you opened the front door you could see this house had done some hard living.

This is the living room before. The previous owners had started priming the walls but it looks like they went out for Tarahumara (best Mexican food in Utah) part way through and never came back.