House built in the last century. It must be remodelled and conditioned to rent. It is in its original state, having suffered no intervention. We have a very tight budget. (We doubt if there are any budgets that are not tight...)
The strategy for the project is very simple: take advantage of everything that can be used. It is such a humble building that only the structure is usable: the forging, the dividing walls, the façades, and the walls of the stairs that hold the whole of the ensemble.
Alterations are made on two points of the volume of the building. On the second floor, the constructed volume is emptied. As the ceiling is quite low and there are no windows, part of the cover is dismantled and a new terrace is built so that light gets in the whole floor. The study and the children’s playroom are placed here. On the ground floor the volume is enlarged.
We build to the maximum surface allowed by law, using part of the patio. The height of the existing ceiling is kept and the space for kitchen-dining-living area is distributed.
The rest of the elements are adjusted like a jigsaw puzzle: the garage between the façade and the staircase; a toilet between the staircase and the kitchen; the children’s bedrooms, the parents’ bedroom and the bathrooms on the first floor.
So far, the project is finished. We focus on building well and creating a warm atmosphere for each area of the house.
Colours and textures are unified for facings in all the rooms. The balance between the existing materials and the white-painted gypsum is kept. Wood is another material used for all the special parts of the house: The entrance-hall, the attic in the garage, the staircase, the kitchen, and some other piece of furniture.
(After so much restraint, we have a good time working with the carpenter...)
And finally, halfway through the work and already in the finishing stage, the house that was supposed to be rented has to become the main residence. The reasons are not relevant, but we have now more money to use. So, we improve the facilities so that they are more efficient, we choose a better pavement, and the fir wooden covers without polishing can now be of varnished birch...
(We enjoy with our new resources and we insist on it: we know the tools of our trade).