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Hello Everyone! Our renovations are coming to an end soon and I guess we are ready to share our experiences! 
 
I had been a silent reader of Renotalk T-blog for the longest time since we started balloting for BTO. 
 
We had been pretty unlucky that all the queue numbers we have are mostly out of the available units which means that by the time we can choose the units it's always left with low floors! :bangwall:
 
Finally in year 2010, we got a queue number which is within the available units and finally get to choose a mid-floor unit! No fish prawn also good right? If we keep on balloting we will be donating endless $10 to HDB! :~
 
I hope my humble blog can help someone during their renovation journey. Here's our floor plan to kick start my T-blog!
 
 
 
Mood Board
 
As the title of my blog suggests, I am looking at neutral colors for my crib so that I can add on colors on the decoration later on. These are the ideas I have in mind before the hunting of IDs/contractors 
 
 
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The hunting for IDs/Contractors! 

We are quite chillax about the renovations hence we are just taking our own sweet time for everything! We got the keys in Nov 2015 and only start hunting for IDs/contractors after we get our keys.

There here are a few things in our mind that we MUST have and some of them are things that we will do if we have extra budget  

  • Vinyl overlay. We love the looks of vinyl and it really brings out the coziness in a house hence it is a must! 
  • Platform bed + dressing table in MBR
  • Overlay toilets walls
  • Overlay kitchen walls 
  • Vanity + mirror for MBR toilet
  • Altar (my mum is moving in with us hence she insist on this and we must think of a way to have altar in the Scandinavian way! 
  • Brick wall

Doesn't seem to be a lot of things right but unfortunely our initial budget of 25k a not enough for all the things that we wanted! Which we had then increased our budget to 30k. 

ID K

This is the first time that we are meeting up with an ID and totally do not know what to expect. This ID firm was from suggested post on Facebook (advertisement) i sent a msg to the firm to request for a meetup. 10mins into the conversation the ID is immediately eliminated! I told him that I wanted to have peranakan tiles somewhere in the house and he asked me what are peranakan tiles :bangwall::bangwall:

After we left, he sent us the quotation and kept asking us to meetup again which obviously we are not going to meet him again! #kthxbye

Contractor N

We informed contractor N on our requirements and budget and quote was close to budget. The discussion was okay but we are not sure if we can connect to him well. Able to work with our budget, provides solutions and suggestions to our design and provides 3D. *Shortlisted*

Contractor E

Recommended by our sis in law. Soft spoken lady with ID background. Able to give suggestions on how to save $ on some places. Fast response and price was around our budget as well. Due to this contractor does not have a registered business in Singapore and we are afraid to take risks but she did a pretty good job for our sis in law house *KIV-ed*

Contractor K

Recommended by a friend of ours who used him for their house. Seems like a one man show contractor who sub-con out all the renovations with him managing the project. Everything we requested is do-able accordingly to him which we had our doubts on over promising as other contractors we met up with had informed us that some of the things we wanna do are not feasible. Quote is higher and due to no confidence in him. *dropped*

ID C

Met up with ID C and his assistant at our house for on site quotation. Discussion went very well and good vibes with them. Met up a week later again to review on quotation and initial mood board. Quotation is WAYYY above our budget but lotsa things that we did not request are added in as well. Even after taking out these items the quotation should still be in high 30k+. Requested for soft copy to be sent to email and unfortunately waited for 2 weeks and that email did not come. We are actually quite keen on them as the communication was really good and ID C seems to really know his stuffs very well. It was till I was ready to sign with another contractor then ID C check back with me on the quotation again which he claims had been sent. But it was a little too late as we had already did decided to sign up with another contractor. 

Contractor J & E

This duo team needs no introduction. Highly sought after in the Renotalk community. Met up with them at our new home. Contractor J being the carpentry boss sketches all the carpentry on the spot. Rejected a lot of my ideas because he said not worth the $ but because of that hubby is very impressed by him and likes him a lot! :~ 

Quotation was slightly above our budget and since good vibes + hubby likes them of cuz shortlisted! *eventually signed up with J & E!*

Edited by lalashir
 

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Purchases

I have always been a fan of Taobao for a long time. From the days when we need an agent to do purchase for us till now the shopping experience on Taobao is so much easier!

I used eTrove ship for me for my shipments and so far I have done 3 shipments with them and all are pleasant experience. Till date I had spend more than $5000 on Taobao and still counting! There are just too many things to buy from Taobao :P these are the stuffs that I had bought and received and so far all the items are received in good condition except a broken bulb and some dents but it's acceptable for the savings that I get! :dancingqueen:

6F4ADD4B-AE34-48BA-B0E3-EBF6611FA2F8_zps

BBE748E3-1694-4D4E-B99C-9EEA8F60F50E_zps

25156BEF-5BD0-47AA-AC86-24DDFF5C98A6_zps

30C44EC1-59F1-4C7D-86EB-C40B3CAE0634_zps

DF5DA429-C642-44DF-B673-1B6D238F4A5F_zps

51D8DD4B-3099-4808-A8BE-423870D02A77_zps

EBA88299-181F-4B0C-AB0B-F61CCFFFCE5A_zps

B2C8A479-3BF5-411C-B727-C2D78DAA8746_zps

6583B21C-0905-4B9E-9FDC-86B76C28A347_zps

Other Purchases

We totally have no idea what Hood, hob and oven to buy so just get one which is within our Budget. I am impressed with the hob because the salesperson demostrated to us and told us that it will not trap food debris inside the flame area thus easier cleaning. No need to clean so much of cuz I must buy! :sport-smiley-018:

7C2E8034-CE9D-4623-9AFA-164048688208_zps

35EE8CD3-D354-44CD-86B6-DAA657C98826_zps

4CD132F7-4BA7-4DB7-B3C0-1B5189E4F349_zps

Blanco Naya 6

FCE08E6E-F99D-44F6-B523-AB1F38062EFC_zps

Joven storage heater 35L

71859930-B141-402A-B24A-FE7D34C2E3CB_zps

Bought 3 of these Elmark fans from JB Tampoi and 1 Vento Fino 2  

D8E8064D-CD31-43A6-B1AB-79B9FFADAB0B_zps

9870D195-30C3-41DC-9ED4-AD174412FDD0_zps

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by lalashir
 

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Decisions making time!

Ever since I had started our renovations, I felt that there are so many things that needed decisions! I felt that I had never made so much decisions before and what makes it worse is I am a super indecisive person which sometimes drives hubby and J & E crazy lol! :rofl:

We had decided to drop the idea of overlaying common toilet due to budget constraints. Kitchen will be screeded and paint over hence I need to choose tiles for MBR toilet and kitchen backsplash. 

I spend the longest time deciding on these. I think I changed my mind like x times cannot decide if I want to have feature wall in the toilet or not etc went Hafary like 4 times before decided on the below. 

Tiles for backsplash 

D68941DD-5726-40F4-9E86-C5E165698B2F_zps

MBR toilet walls

54712DC5-19C9-41AF-9546-7E4494E8A9E8_zps

And MBR toilet floor

287012F0-CD8A-4BAB-BA93-E8FC98535274_zps

Edited by lalashir
 

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When I thought that tiles choosing was bad, choosing the right laminates was even worse!! There are so many kind of laminates to choose from! :bangwall::bangwall:

This was the point of time I wished that I had chosen an ID so that someone can guide me along on what to choose will turn out nicer. I am so afraid that the chosen laminate when used on carpentry turns out to be not what I had imagined and there is no turning back by then. 

I had always wanted to use Kompacplus for kitchen because I like the wood grain and sleekness of the tabletop. Decided to use New York Teak for kitchen and white solid top for MBR toilet vanity to save cost. 

E4ADD1A9-15D2-4027-BCDF-6A1BCE36F705_zps

As for Vinyl overlay, we had decided to just overlay living room to save cost as our rooms already come with parquet. Should we decide to overlay the rooms again we will do it in future. Choose Amsterdam Eggshell from Evorich. 

CF9771D9-2B35-4F50-B199-4D19808D9523_zps

6FB03F53-82FE-4331-93D6-6A5EF740DC89_zps

Edited by lalashir
 

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After confirming with Contractor E on the tiles he fast hand fast leg and the tiles was delivered to our house in the next few days and when I went down on one weekend I was surprised to see that tiler already started tiling MBR toilet! At this point of time we have not even paid any single cent to him yet! :good:

4BD22959-6367-439F-9FA2-7D52D1083689_zps

As for the floor tiler was asking us if we wanted it to be placed vertically or horizontally. He said that horizontally allows better water flow but later part when he was working on the floor, contractor E called and said tiler found out that floor tiles placed vertically for our toilet will be better for water flow hence it will be placed vertically instead. 

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10 days later the overlay of our MBR is completed! The honeycomb tiles are laid very neatly and tiler told us that he had put in a lot of effort to lay the honeycomb tiles because they are very difficult to lay and he need to make sure that the alignment are done properly due to the all the tiles may not be cut properly by tiles supplier. He said normally he take 1-3 days to overlay toilet but ours was exceptionally long. Contractor E also told us that this tiler is the best tiler they had :good: 

 

Really very good job! Super happy with the outcome. No regrets spending $ on this! 

EA2F8DC1-9BFB-466C-8944-FD8F73E78550_zps

Edited by lalashir
 

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More pics of the MBR toilet :dribble:

7F38F820-F958-4A99-8571-1499FBFBA84C_zps

6E774F76-E19A-44AC-9186-17F2A0D85AD4_zps

tiler had also completed on the kitchen cabinet base and used leftover floor tiles to tile our entrance. 

79EBE5C9-D82F-44EC-8EBA-00ACEC62E5F3_zps

trying to place the backsplash tiles on the floor to get a better idea of what to expect

0F791D9E-FBAA-4E99-90A2-EBAAF1ACEB87_zps

Edited by lalashir
 

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As my renovation already started few months back and there was a hiatus due to CNY break + our our too chillax mentality it is still not 100% completed as of now. :rofl:

Next up will be electrical. We made some planning on the electrical points that we want so that we can go through. Electrical works are so expensive! We do not wish to spend too much on this and hopefully we can keep it below $2000. Hence we try to minimize a lot of added points or lighting points if possible. 

Initial plans for our electrical  

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along the way there were some changes here and there and we met the electrician total of 3 times to confirm on the changes. Hubby is not too happy with the electrician because we wanted to have a 2 way switch in our MBR but electrician insist that we cannot have it due to some reasons which I don't understand what are they talking it's all electrical terms :bleah:

finally after many debates and test by hubby he confirm that it definitely can be done! So he talked to electrician again and he finally said it can be done and used some excuses to said why previously he said it cannot be done etc. Contractor E was shocked to hear that electrician refuse to do 2 way switch for us because he said electrician did the same 2 way switch for our upstairs Neighbour! :fire:

Hubby was very persistent on the 2 way switch in the bedroom because he thinks that if he don't do it in future he will be the one who will get up from the bed to off the lights :sport-smiley-018:

Edited by lalashir
 

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some of the items are delivered! 

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AD46559B-36E3-4CBD-BEF5-DD4B76AB9B92_zps

Fans that we bought from JB earlier.

2A419D25-F03E-4C19-97EB-80A0CD3CCDEB_zps

we bought 3 elmark 52" ceiling fan with lights because the salesperson said that 52" and 42" is the same price. Being the kiasu Singaporeans of cuz get the 52" so can be more windy right? But we later found out that it was a bad choice! It was too big for our rooms :bleah::bleah:

I did not have to pay GST for our tampoi purchase as we bought it during a road trip to Malaysia and if you stayed in Malaysia for more than 48hours (I think) you are entitled to more GST relief per person! 

 

 

 

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On 5/5/2016 at 4:28 PM, lalashir said:

some of the items are delivered! 

5248A178-AF82-4B39-9928-8230F00880DD_zps

AD46559B-36E3-4CBD-BEF5-DD4B76AB9B92_zps

Fans that we bought from JB earlier.

2A419D25-F03E-4C19-97EB-80A0CD3CCDEB_zps

we bought 3 elmark 52" ceiling fan with lights because the salesperson said that 52" and 42" is the same price. Being the kiasu Singaporeans of cuz get the 52" so can be more windy right? But we later found out that it was a bad choice! It was too big for our rooms :bleah::bleah:

I did not have to pay GST for our tampoi purchase as we bought it during a road trip to Malaysia and if you stayed in Malaysia for more than 48hours (I think) you are entitled to more GST relief per person! 

 

 

Hi,

Can you share how much the Elmark fans cost? =) And what did you do with the fans since they're too big???

 

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Hello @lalashir! Just wanted to say that the theme for your home is pretty close to what I'm envisioning for my own as well. Keep the updates coming!

Also, your master toilet looks reallyyy good with the new tiles! Love the large white hexagon & wood flooring combo. Very scandi. :wub: 

For my own master bedroom toilet, am still on the fence as to whether I should overlay only the existing HDB feature tiles (where the shower mixer is), or to overlay the entire toilet + floors. Just worried about how much additional cost it would be!  :deal:  Sigh, budget vs aesthetics. What to do~~~

Edited by kingandbin
 

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On 5/4/2016 at 7:24 PM, lalashir said:

More pics of the MBR toilet :dribble:

7F38F820-F958-4A99-8571-1499FBFBA84C_zps

6E774F76-E19A-44AC-9186-17F2A0D85AD4_zps

tiler had also completed on the kitchen cabinet base and used leftover floor tiles to tile our entrance. 

79EBE5C9-D82F-44EC-8EBA-00ACEC62E5F3_zps

trying to place the backsplash tiles on the floor to get a better idea of what to expect

0F791D9E-FBAA-4E99-90A2-EBAAF1ACEB87_zps

Wow!! I love the hexagonal tiles in the bathrooms! We have very similar hexagonal tiles for our bathrooms too except for ours our ID incorporated other colours as well! Can't wait to see your backsplash!

 

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7 hours ago, sganimefan said:

Hi,

Can you share how much the Elmark fans cost? =) And what did you do with the fans since they're too big???

 

6 hours ago, bB2121 said:

yea... interested in your fan purchase location n pricing as well.

Hello @sganimefan @bB2121 I cannot remember the exact price but they were around RM1200 and comes with LED 3 tone lighting. The fan was too big for the room with casement door (bedroom 3) hence need to do some adjustment on the top door. Not the prettiest thing but at least it will not hit the fan when the door is opened. Will show pics soon! 

 

3 hours ago, kingandbin said:

Hello @lalashir! Just wanted to say that the theme for your home is pretty close to what I'm envisioning for my own as well. Keep the updates coming!

Also, your master toilet looks reallyyy good with the new tiles! Love the large white hexagon & wood flooring combo. Very scandi. :wub: 

For my own master bedroom toilet, am still on the fence as to whether I should overlay only the existing HDB feature tiles (where the shower mixer is), or to overlay the entire toilet + floors. Just worried about how much additional cost it would be!  :deal:  Sigh, budget vs aesthetics. What to do~~~

Hello @kingandbin! Thanks for reading my blog! I totally understand what you are going through! Overlay toilet walls + flooring really takes up quite fair bit into the budget :bleah: 

But my original HDB tiles are too ugly!! I hated them to the core! After I had overlayed my MBR toilet now I think my common toilet looks like kopitiam because they are so blah and ugly! But too bad we really have no more budget for common toilet :~

Initially we only wanted to overlay walls to save cost but after contractors J & E told us that if we overlay the floor we do not need to do a shower kerb (I forgot the reason I think was because of shower screen or something) then we decide just go ahead with it! It indeed looks more sleek without shower kerbs. :wub:

3 hours ago, ricepapergirl said:

Wow!! I love the hexagonal tiles in the bathrooms! We have very similar hexagonal tiles for our bathrooms too except for ours our ID incorporated other colours as well! Can't wait to see your backsplash!

Hello @ricepapergirl thanks for popping by!! I had been a silent reader for your blog and I love your hexagon tiles too!! I wished I had an ID to incorporate colors for me as initially I wanted to mix some colors in but I am afraid that it will turn out to be a flop hence I decide to have all white to be on the safe side! Your mix of colors is looking really :good:

 

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Kitchen walls are screeded and ready to be painted! My original HDB tiles are really ugly and I hated it! 

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Vinyl flooring by Evorich is also up in the living room and I got a shock when I saw the joint line trimmings they are so bulky and ugly! It was supposed to be a metal trimming and I was told that they were out of stocks. The silicone that they did between the skirting and vinyl was also very bad! It's just sloppy works with uneven silicone all over. :fire:need to change the trimmings and redo the silicone again. 

1E38CE52-6005-4AB1-9F8C-D3F916AD94B5_zps

454B1A34-444B-40EA-AD0F-7E866BDD8C83_zps

Part of the carpentry were up as well :dancingqueen:

Mirror frame for MBR toilet the left side are aircon piping and contractor J used the laminates to covered them up.

F53000F2-7132-414F-B5BD-64CC4D150F82_zps

 

Vanity top

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MBR wardrobe 

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MBR headboard + dressing table. We had dropped platform bed because after seeing the 3D I felt that it makes the room look too busy and congested because our MBR is really very small :(

Due to the beam at the back, either we spend $ to box it up or make a headboard so that when we place our bed there wouldn't have a gap at the back. Since box up are not cheap hence decided to just spend abit more to do a half height headboard.

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Casement wardrobe for Bedroom 3

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