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Punggol Drive Muji Style Reno Journey Start to End

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Hi Renotalk members!

First off thank you everyone who contributed to renotalk as i've been able to learn so much here and found many "lobangs", knowledge and ideas.
So I decided to just document my personal journey in hope that someone might find it useful in the future.
I'll try to show all process, from start to finish, so anyone who needs any help/questions can ask me here or pm me for details.

My wife and I got our sales of balance house at Punggol Drive, near to Oasis LRT.
House: 4 room flat.
Location: Punggol Drive (Oasis LRT)
Budget: about 30-50k (including everything e.g. electrical appliances etc)
Theme: Muji
Reno Period: Official start = 11 Feb 2020 to Ongoing (expected End March 2020)

We are graphic designers and know what we want so we decided to just find a contractor.
The theme we are going is simple, minimalist, Muji-style. So lots of light wood color and white.

Video for empty house: here (i'm not sure how to download video from IG)
IG post: Punggol Drive

punggol drive floor plan.jpg



Edited by Edwinlim

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Join 46,923 satisfied homeowners who used renotalk quotation service to find interior designers. Get an estimated quotation

Initial search for IDs:
We only asked friends for referral as I think it's easier and more "trustworthy" through recommendation.
Initially we went for ID and consulted 3 IDs but in the end we felt we already know what we want, so we searched for contractor. For IDs we went crazy with lots of built-in cabinets and it came to be more 50k, and we decided to cut down and make it simple using the help of contractor. I'm not going to discuss about which ID we went to as we did not use any of them.

Decided to use contractor:
(1) Edmund, DX i*******
A friend recommended them as they have used them before.

(2) Uncle Qingyi, Swat** R*********
A friend's uncle. Friend said very honest contractor.

Initial meeting both contractor were prompt to reply, and fast meet up to do measurements. Pricing wise is about the same +/- and we decided on DX i**** is just based purely on "feeling". I feel that both is capable and both will do a good job.

So we signed the quotation right before chinese new year 2020, and Edmund promptly submitted permit and work started on 11 Feb 2020.

(1) Hack room 3 "L" shape wall and combine into a big living space (officially called 2nd living room now)
(2) Hack mini kitchen wall "L" shape. Overlay kitchen floor tiles and build cabinet cement base, and built in cabinet.
(3) Overlay living room, room 3, walkway, dining with vinyl tiles.
(4) 2nd living room, built-in platform with cabinet. Bi-fold mild steel door, matte white.
(5) Common toilet to lay one part half wall with tiles, and master toilet, "C" shape overlay wall and floor tiles.
(6) 2nd room, just buy all from EZBUY/TAOBAO.
(7) Master room, built-in platform bed and table.

Master Room and 2nd Room: Sand and polish existing parquet flooring.
As we are not overlaying any vinyl here, and parquet flooring still looks decent, we decided to just repolish.
Pricing wise is $400 for both rooms, compared to outside average $680 quotation. We found the supplier from Carousell!


After fully sanding.

After applying polish. (will be matte when fully dried)

Final, after leaving overnight, looks as good as new.

Edmund came with his sub-cons to HACK WALL:

Edited by edwinltl

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Reserved. (for final complete home photos)

As we bought alot of goods from Ezbuy (taobao), it'll be slightly delayed due to the Covid-19.

Edited by Edwinlim

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Journey Starts:

Looking for IDs:
We went to 3 IDs (from renotalk) and told them about our concept, one of them were not as happy as I started giving all ideas in what we want. We went crazy with all built-in stuff and budget went over 50k just for renovation. In the end we decided that we know what we want, and scaled down accordingly, and decided to look for contractors;

Looking for contractors:
We only ask friends for recommendations.
(1) Edmund, DX i******* (selected)
Recommended by a friend.

(2) Qingyi, Swat*** R*********
A friend's uncle, who said he is honest contractor.

Both were fast to reply. Both came to do measurements promptly.
We felt both will do a good job. Pricing wise is about +/-. In fact we found that actually some items is quite comparable to IDs (so for those who look for ID, don't worry you might get a good deal too). And the selected one is just based on "feeling".

We signed with Edmund few days  before Chinese New Year, then he promptly applied for reno permit.

Things to do:
(1) Hack "L" shape wall between Room 3 (from now on 2nd living room) and Living Room (To open up the space), with Bi-fold mild steel door.
(2) Hack small "L" shape kitchen wall.
(3) Kitchen: cabinet cement base, overlay tiles, and built-in kitchen cabinet.
(4) Overlay vinyl tiles for Dining, Living, 2nd Living, walkway.
(5) Built-in platform bed with cabinet at 2nd Living.
(6) Master room: Built-in platform bed, and table.
(7) 2nd room: All taobao (we used EZBUY) furniture.
(8) Sand and repolish parquet flooring for Master and 2nd Room.

Sanding parquet flooring
First thing we did was to ask a supplier we found on Carousell to sand and polish Master and 2nd room.
Price was $400, average quotation was $680.

After sanding,
After applying polish, will look matte after drying.
Finally, new looking parquet flooring after leaving overnight.

Wall Hacking:
Once permit approved, Edmund came with his guys to do wall hacking.

After hacking, looks really big now!

Tiling kitchen and toilet:
We went to Hafary to select tiles, chosen dark grey for all kitchen and toilet. Kitchen base for both side cabinets.

As our shower area for both toilets has this strips of lines which we do not like, we asked Edmund to tile it up for us. Master toilet is "C" shape wall, we decided to do flooring as well in the end. Common toilet is just a tall wall to cover up the "ugly" strips.

Bi-fold mild steel door:
We wanted mild steel as compared to aluminum as we are looking for slim profile, and Edmund decided to use steel support too to make sure the bi-fold doors are really steady. Photo shows completed steel support. The wooden board on top is to actually to hang aircon. 5 分板 (5/8 inches). There are 8 parts to an inch, so 1/8 is 1 分板,1/4 is 2分板 and so on.


Gas pipe:
Edmund said some gas pipe installers were not willing to fix a long way, meaning from top to outside, then come back in, compared to coming in directly behind fridge. First time installer came, we asked him to go the long way, he started, albeit abit unwillingly. But in the end, the top beam couldn't go through. It was because the initial hole (which already exist) did not align well thus he went off without installing. Edmund came with his man and drilled all the way through. 2nd time installer came to installed without any issues.

Laminates and kitchen counter top:
We decided to go visit LamiTAK, EDL, KompacPlus directly as we can see the FULL piece. It's really hard to visualise a small piece and it actually saves the contractor's time and our time and make sure we chose the one we really like. (Although Edmund already took all small piece sample for us!)

114 Lavender Street #01-61, 2 CT Hub, 338729

We chose Tanned Rosenheim maple WY5259D (The one in the middle below)

43 Sungei Kadut Street 1, Singapore 729348

The pros of EDL is that they have matching laminate and kitchen counter top. So if you need both cabinets and counter top to be the same this will be the one to go for.


280 Woodlands Industrial Park E5, #04-15 Harvest @ Woodlands, Singapore 757322

KompacPlus and EDL is around the same area, so can visit both at the same time. We chosen KompacPlus purely because of the design, number 0203 as seen in photo, model Boston Cherry. KompacPlus is 6mm thickness for both countertop and wall backing, and EDL is actually 10mm for countertop and 6/8mm for backing.


Edited by edwinltl

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Reserved. (for electronics and electrical) 

We decided to get Starmex System 4 from Ga** C***
Living room 24k btu
2nd Living room 10k
2nd Bedroom 10k
Master 12k
System 4: Mitsubishi 33 compressor (5 tick), 9/9/12/24 BTU. $3979 (we got it in-store only promo)
Online price: $4449

The salesperson told me, the power of a 33 compressor can go til about 36, and it's only 2 less than the 38. Last time people go for 38 is because the next lower level is 28, and it's not powerful enough. So now that Mitsubishi Electric came out with 33k (which can go to max ~36), most people will settle for this.


Edited by Edwinlim

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@Edwinlim looking forward to more photos but it seems to be going well so far! you mentioned you guys are graphic designers. Did y'all used your skills to do almost like a 3D rendering for the house before hiring contractors?


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