Ben and Erin Napier are back for Season 5 of “Home Town”—and the renovation they tackle in their season premiere is a real tear-jerker.
In the episode “A New Beginning,” Ben and Erin tell the story of Brandon, a beloved member of the “Home Town” crew who passed away in 2018. Brandon left behind a wife, Brooke, and son, Kingston, and Brooke has found love again with her new husband, Robbie. The newlyweds have bought their first house in Laurel, MS, for $200,000 where they hope to build their future.
Still, the house needs work, so Ben and Erin plan to spend $100,000 on renovations. Read on to find out how they breathe new life into this couple’s old house—which might just inspire you to make some changes around your own abode.
Bright white paint can make an old house feel new
Erin knows that a fresh coast of paint can be transformative for an old house, so she decides to give this classic home a face-lift by using bright white paint, both inside and out. First, she paints over the pink exterior, improving the curb appeal and giving the home a more classic look.
“White was the best classic choice,” Erin says as she looks at the house from the yard. “It changes everything about how you think of the architecture of the house. Just a totally different personality.”
But she’s not done yet. Inside, the living room is all dark wood tones, so Erin decides to paint the walls and the brick fireplace the same bright white. She decides to leave the ceiling with the original natural wood, but the new color on the walls gives the space a whole new look.
“Before it felt like the Wild West in here. This is what fixes that,” Erin says.
Add features that match a home’s time period
With a new color, the exterior of this house looks good as new, but there’s one more problem: the gable over the front door.
Erin knows that the gable doesn’t match the time period of the house, so she decides to replace it with a flat roof like the one the house had originally.
“That gable always looked funny to me. I want to come back in with a flat roof again because, one, it’s original to the house, and, two, it would be absolutely gorgeous,” Erin says.
She replaces the gable with a flat roof with a white railing, which gives the house a more classic, elegant look.
“It really really changes everything about the architecture of the house,” Erin says.
A bigger door adds more light
The living room in this house is big; but nonetheless, the space feels dark and unwelcoming. Still, Erin knows she can brighten this space with one easy solution: a bigger door.
She opens up the door to the backyard so that it’s the same width as the window on the other side of the room. This gives the room more natural light, plus it makes the space more aesthetically pleasing.
“The room has some symmetry about it now because there’s light coming from both sides,” Erin says once the new door is put in.
To finish the living space, Erin and Ben decide to put a deck behind the new double doors, effectively extending the living room to the outside.
In a white house, add some dark elements for contrast
When Erin and Ben first see the house, they tell Brooke and Robbie how much they love the floral wallpaper in the dining room. This wallpaper is dated, but Erin knows she can make it look new by painting the wall below the wainscoting a rich, modern black.
Plus, with lots of white paint on the exterior and in the living room making this house look light and bright, Erin knows that she’ll need some darker colors to even it out. This dining room is the perfect spot to bring in some moody tones.
“I wanted the dining room to be unexpected and unique for a reason,” Erin says. “All the other rooms are so neutral. Everything is white and cream. You’ve got to have contrast. You’ve got to have this moment of drama.”
Laminate flooring can look just like tile, but is easier to clean
With the dining room looking dark and moody, Erin and Ben want to continue creating dark accents, starting with the kitchen floor.
Erin decides to save money by choosing vinyl flooring that looks like tile but is easy to clean because they don’t have grout lines like tile. When the floors are installed, Erin approves.
It “looks like real honed slate tile floors,” she says.
The dark look is perfect next to the white cabinets and countertops, so this flooring is a great choice all-round!