When there are little surprises behind a wall: Changing the interior design plan

When there are little surprises behind a wall: Changing the interior design plan

I have a couple of renovation projects going on where both have required changing the interior design plan a bit.  Once demo had taken place it was evident that tweaks and changes needed to happen.  So why were changes made?  How were changes made to not affect the budget?

Flip Property

I am currently working on a flip property where budget and time are extremely important.  It’s not to say that budget and time are not important in private properties.  It is just that the longer a renovation takes with a flip property, the longer my clients have to carry the costs.  With flip properties I like to:

  • have a very tight construction calendar.
  • see multiple trades working together (when they can).
  • turn over the finished property in as little time as possible (without losing my mind).

So what happened that I had to be changing the design plan?

Changing the Interior Design Plan: Second Story

When we got this property, this is what the second story roughly looked like (and if you don’t follow me on Facebook, you won’t know that someone had started to renovate this property and maybe didn’t have the skill or knowledge of renovating). I have a couple of Facebook live videos that show what the property looked like when we got it.

changing the interior design plan

The upstairs was quite a mess.  Here is what I was looking at:

  • Part of the ceiling was removed (including insulation).
  • The drywall was extremely questionable (as was the mud and tape job).
  • Install of some of the fixed elements (especially the tile floor) was clearly not carried out by a professional.
  • There was only one bedroom.

It was evident that changing the interior design plan of this unit was going to happen!

Changing the Interior Design Plan

When discussing this with Robin Spiers, with Robin Spiers & Associates (the real estate agent who will be listing this townhouse), we decided I would create an interior design plan that we would transform this unit into a two bedroom unit (instead of going back to a three bedroom unit where all three bedrooms would be tiny).  After looking at the entire property, I also made the suggestion of moving the washer and dryer upstairs. Th washer and dryer that were currently sitting in the basement were not meeting code anyway.  Here is the conceptual plan that I came up with:

changing the interior design plan

This plan incorporated:

  • The washer and dryer upstairs.
  • A good size bathroom with a double sink vanity.
  • Two good-sized bedrooms both with a walk-in closet (as we all know storage is always tight).

I also had to work around two windows for one of the bedrooms.

When the drywall all came down, there was a little structural wall that we were not anticipating to find in one of the bedrooms.

changing the interior design plan


Well, when life throws you lemons you make lemonade right?  So after heading to the site to see what I would have to work around, and after throwing out ideas back and forth with my contractor, I came up with changing the interior design plan to this:

changing the interior design plan

The closet for that bedroom will now have a window in it.  Originally I thought of leaving the closet open with no door however my contractor suggested a pocket door (so I wouldn’t have to worry about losing space with a swing door).  There are two walls in that closet that are 31″ long (on the sides).   Typically a standard closet is 24″ deep so this would be more like a ‘reach in’ closet.  Since the window is high enough off the ground, I’ll be able to place a single rod for hanging below the window.  As you can see from the 3D rendering below, there is still a lot of room in this bedroom.  I am a fan of having a window in a closet (to open for fresh air) however, this is is a pretty big window for a closet but I have to work with what I have.

changing the interior design plan

The entire time I was coming up with changes, I had to also be concerned with the budget.  How would these changes affect my budget?  For starters, less framing would be involved with the new plan.  I would have to add a pocket door to the budget however, it’s a bit of a wash with the less framing needed.  Phew!

Changing the Interior Design Plan

It isn’t very often that design plans need to be changed drastically.  The thing with renovations is that you never really do know what is behind a wall until you actually see it with your own eyes.  Every now and then some tweaks and changes are required.  What is great about managing these projects (like the Flip Property), is that I can quickly assess the situation, make the design changes, continue to hold the budget near and dear to me, and allow the project to continue on without any delays.  That’s what I call a win-win for all of my clients!

Thinking of your own buy and flip property or owning an investment property but don’t want the hassle of designing and managing it yourself?  Contact me today to discuss your next investment. 




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