Renovations for a house is an interesting experience that is bound to teach you a lot along the way. This process will allow you to explore different aspects of the house renovation process, such as:
Diving into home renovation ideas to design the perfect home
Negotiating with, and managing, the interior designers and contractors
Learning about different materials you can use for various parts of your home renovation
Considerations Before Renovating
Before getting any grand house renovation ideas, consider the space you want to renovate and what will work best for your family and lifestyle.
Trading functionality for trendy designs isn’t a good idea in the long run. It might cost you time and money, should you need to repair or redo your home down the road.
An elevated entrance or steps in the living room, for example, may prove difficult for potential homebuyers to navigate with a baby stroller or wheelchair.
When it comes to hiring a renovation contractor, get as many solid recommendations as you can, always do your due diligence by checking reviews, and ask the contractor as many questions as you can.
Remember to ask for an estimated budget, drawings/plans, approval permits required (if necessary), materials that will be used, and timelines to help manage expectations.
Time To Get Inspired!
Now that we’ve taken a look at a few important aspects that need to be considered before embarking on a home renovation journey, let's feast our eyes on some major and minor construction projects undertaken by fellow Malaysians to inspire you:
1) English Cottage – Asri Meris Anthony
Before: The revamped 'kampung' house.
After: English-inspired cottage-style home.
Looking at this renovation, you might ask yourself if this is even in Malaysia! Asri Meris Anthony spent almost RM200,000 on renovation costs, and has taken his home through a few different renovation phases.
Originally a traditional kampung house, Asri turned the exterior of his home into an English-themed ”Shabby Cottage”, with the interior subsequently transformed into a farmhouse-style home.
This beautifully executed renovation by Asri was mostly a DIY project. He began by inspecting the original structure and replacing any rotting wood.
The home was then given a fresh coat of paint and the windows were replaced with contrasting panelled window frames fitted with clear glass, to give it the feel of an English cottage.
In the next phase, the stairs were demolished to make way for the building of a concrete ground floor, complete with a quaint porch.
This additional space not only gave Asri’s growing family more room to play in, but they also wanted to minimise structural problems associated with frequent flooding in their neighbourhood.
The gorgeous farmhouse-themed interior with white walls, wooden fittings, and barnyard doors give the home a more spacious feel. The outdoor patio and balcony are tastefully decorated with lots of vibrant coloured plants, giving the home a very welcoming feel.
2) Clean Minimalist – Mcyah Joanjett
Before: The front part of the house.
After: Affordable items artfully placed against a white backdrop creates a whole other look that's clean and chic.
Here’s proof that you don’t need to spend a lot of money to make your home gorgeous! This makeover focused on giving the interior and exterior walls a fresh coat of white paint for a clean and more spacious look.
To add a natural element to the home, floating shelves were installed both inside and outside the house and decorated with potted plants.
For a classy but minimalistic touch, different light fittings were added, as well as a Hollywood-style vanity mirror.
Mcyah Joanjett not only lists the price of everything she purchased, but even tells you where to get it, and gives handy tips on how to get stuff for cheap. For example, she suggests buying and fixing items yourself instead of hiring help.
3) Spacious, Comfortable, Private – Eleena Jamil
The exterior of the home boasts a minimalistic board-marked concrete wall.
Wide open spaces and "floating concrete steps" ensure there is a smooth flow between each individual area.
Built in the 1980s, this two-storey end-lot terrace house originally had low ceilings, floors split into four different levels, and a small garden outside.
Keen on expanding the space by building upwards in order to house a young family with two kids, the owners hired architecture firm Eleena Jamil to turn their dreams into a three-storey reality.
The ‘End-lot’ House project in Bangsar saw the reconfiguration of internal spaces to create a home that is comfortable, functional, and yet, private.
By removing non-loadbearing walls and floor slabs, a double-height volume was achieved, which serves to add more light and height to the space, including improved air circulation.
Upon entering the home, you will be greeted by a rustic brick wall backdrop, highlighting the contemporary staircase in a new location, which allows for the continuity of space and improved natural lighting.
The top floor houses the most unique aspect: A roof terrace that features multiple trees and large rectangular openings in the concrete facade, framing views of the neighbourhood and the city’s skyline.
4) Shared Spaces – Tetawowe Atelier
A sleek white-grilled, multi-deck facade also functions as a floating garden for the front of the house.
Soaring house prices in the capital city and the nearby suburbs have made owning a home particularly hard for young working-class adults.
Realising this problem, Tetawowe Atelier designed a new type of housing specifically to meet the demand for a slice of the city to call your own.
This three-storey terrace house (dated somewhere from the 1950-1960s) with a built-up of 20 ft x 60 ft is divided into two independent units, to be lived in by different individuals at one time.
The aim was to encourage young adults to share a space, without sacrificing privacy or comfort. With a narrow width of less than 10 ft, the open-style staircase was designed to give the home an airy feel, while vertically connecting multiple split levels.
To give the home a bright and clean look, the light-coloured interior boasts fixtures in shades of light brown, complemented with thin metal structures.
To further enhance the interiors and make the home feel spacious, lots of openings were created to allow the natural light in.
The mezzanine study deck functions as a floating garden that helps add a welcoming and natural touch to the facade of the home.
These Malaysian home renovations truly stand out and are very unique. If you’re ready to update the look of your home, remember that this is also the best time to consider installing water-saving devices and energy-efficient appliances.
Some examples include installing low-flow toilets, showerheads, and taps, and updating older appliances to newer ones that come with a 5-star energy rating.