The renovating duo Ben and Erin Napier of HGTV’s “Home Town”—now in its fourth season—have updated plenty of outdated abodes in their tiny town of Laurel, MS. But their target in the latest episode has “granny house” written all over it!
In the episode “The Littlest House,” the Napiers meet Rena, who is moving into a house once inhabited by her grandmother and her great-grandmother before her. The place has been empty for years and needs a whole lot of work.
Will Erin and Ben be able to update this classic old house without going over budget, or will it end up being a total gut job? Read on to find out whether this old home can be refreshed for the here and now, and the lessons we can learn about updating tired decor.
2 porches add lots of outside space
Before renovations begin on the inside, Ben and Erin know that one big change needs to be made to the home’s exterior. While the home already has a large front porch, Ben and Erin think the position of the porch isn’t right.
So they shift it a bit to the left, which leaves plenty of room on the right side of the house for a second porch. And since outdoor space is all the rage these days, we say two porches are way better than one!
Red, white, and blue paint has an Americana style
While those double porches look great, the exterior of the home still needs a lot of work.
Before renovation, the old house is dark and dingy—and Erin knows it needs a big refresh. She draws up a plan to paint the house white, with a light-blue front door and a red tin roof.
Rena loves the look, and when the exterior is finally finished, the result is amazing.
The white paint makes this small house look much larger, while the red roof gives the home a charming barn vibe. Another plus: The light-blue door gives the home a pop of color.
As Erin explains, “We wanted it to feel like red, white, and blue Americana, but also to completely fit into its natural surroundings.”
Patterned wallpaper can bring a playful vibe
While plenty of people associate floral wallpaper with their grandmother’s house, the wallpaper Erin and Ben choose to put on an accent wall in Rena’s new bathroom is totally modern.
This blue wallpaper creates a fresh, feminine vibe that is perfect in this large bathroom. When Rena sees the new bathroom, she loves it.
A granite backsplash adds character
When Erin and Ben first see Rena’s home, they know the kitchen will need a big fillip. First up: a fresh countertop.
At first, Erin considers installing quartz countertops, but quickly changes her mind. She knows the kitchen needs something with a bit more dimension, so she picks granite countertops. The gray color looks amazing, and breaks up the white of the rest of the room.
But she doesn’t stop there. Erin wants to do something special with the backsplash, so she sketches out an extension of the granite over the oven.
The result is a beautiful, and unique, focal point that makes this kitchen extra-special.
A recycled bathtub is perfect for the pups
Ben knows that the home’s original, square bathtub is too small and awkward for modern use, so he replaces it an appropriately sized shower/tub combo.
But what to do with that old tub? Ben doesn’t want to throw it away, so he gets creative and turns it into a dog bath.
With some low wood walls added for splash protection, Ben puts the tub on the new side porch. It’s a creative way to reuse part of the original home, and it also adds character to the house.
Is this house a ‘Home Town’ hit?
When Erin and Ben are finally done, Rena can’t believe how gorgeous the house is.
And the best part is that they complete it under budget. Since the house was free, and Rena had $100,000 to spend, they manage to spend a total of only $95,000 on renovations. It’s a great price for a great job that pays its respects to family and to history.
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