I know this is not a complete absolute truth because it won’t apply to the high end market but I do a lot of design and colour consulting in brand new homes and the homeowner is usually saying things like, “The builder only gave us two options, so we chose the lesser of the two evils”.
Barbara Barry’s Classic White Kitchen
I was recently in a $750,000 house (2 years old) where the builder had installed the cheapest possible laminate in the kitchen which was open to the living room/great room, which connected to the entry tile. There was carpet in the living room?? Why would you do that? I mean at least install the cheap laminate in the living room too, instead of chopping up an open space?
The owners said the granite option was so ugly they opted for a laminate countertop instead. They too were counting the days it could all be changed.
Before Irene came to work with me she worked for a developer, just a short 1 1/2 years ago in 2011. She said they hired her to decorate the display suite for a 64 unit condominium complex. The walls were already painted pink beige, the kitchen cabinets were either espresso or cherry, and the granite countertops were Uba Tuba (below).
They got a deal on the granite that was so good, it was installed in every unit.
And do you know why they got such a deal? Because the brown trend was here and no one was interested in sage green countertops.
Irene said all they cared about was selling them for the most profit, not that people would realize what they had as soon as they moved in and then be unhappy and start planning for the day it would be ripped out.
I get emails from readers all the time who are house hunting. They tell me they see brand new house after brand new house with the same dark brown cabinets and cheap porcelain tile.
Over to you my lovelies. Have you had this experience? It upsets me to see this kind of waste. I would rather have laminate countertops in a colour that worked for me if I was buying new. Taking stone countertops out is expensive and wasteful! Why install dated granite countertops just so you can write it in the copy?
In this case as designers and colourists, we are trying to make the best of the bossy and bad finishes that have been installed and sometimes, there’s no amount of magic in our colour chips that can make it disappear.
Do you agree or disagree? Builders, please weigh in. I’m totally willing to be wrong here. What tips do you have that can give buyers exactly what they want?
ps. The Homies are back at Apartment Therapy, you can vote for my blog right here.
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