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Thursday, March 13, 2014

New Kitchen and Laundry Area Tiled For Less Than $35!

As you may know we are updating the condo our daughter lived in while attending ASU. She has graduated so we are now ready to sell it.

We did try to sell it for a great price without updates.  We received the nicest compliments about how clean it was, that it was in good shape, the bathroom was amazing... the only complaints and reasons for not purchasing the property were along the lines of “the kitchen appliances and flooring were dated”.


Our mistake was that we had assumed someone would want to purchase the condo for a lower price, appliances included and do the simple updates themselves. I personally would not want pay for someone else’s design decisions.

See, blogland makes you THINK that the world is full of DIYers. But the reality is: It’s not.

Keep reading to see our newly installed tile.

So we listed the dishwasher, stove, vent hood, refrigerator, washer and dryer on Craigslist. All items were gone within 3 days for a good price and we’re still alive.

The appliances weren’t that bad in my mind. At least not for a condo that will probably become a rental for college students attending ASU.


Then we looked around and found a smokin’ good deal on tile at Lowe’s.

It was priced at just 81 cents a tile. The tile was nice and neutral. Exactly what you would want for a place you are trying to sell.

1-IMG_2413 The reason the tile was so inexpensive was that here in Phoenix the most popular size for tile is 18” x 18”. This tile was 12” x 12”.

TIP! Please consider that no matter what is “in style” the design element of size also known as scale (proportion) should be applied for a CLASSIC or TIMELSS design.

The kitchen in the condo is tiny. Not only would  18” by 18” tile not look right in this space, but in terms of laying out such large tile, with its accompanying cuts, would have made the job much more difficult.

So we loaded up three boxes of tile (There were 14 tiles in each box.) and headed to the register. Lowe’s also offers military members a 10% discount. This blessing basically covered the tax and brought the tile down to around 79 cents a tile. The grand total for all the tile was $33.18. Our friend, Mr. Bill, had leftover thinset and grout he graciously shared with us.

Here is the “before” with dated linoleum.


For the kitchen space two boxes of tile were used. Yes, Mr. Décor and his friend, the amazing Mr. Bill, did the install job themselves so this was a huge cost saving factor.


The kitchen and laundry area took them one day to install. Mr. Décor cut the tile and Mr. Bill applied the thinset and laid it down.


The next day Mr. Décor grouted the tile. Oh he is amazing! I am a blessed woman.


Since we sold the “dated” washer and dryer we opted to rip up the linoleum there as well and put tile down in this space to match the kitchen.

This was the tile before it was grouted. We used basically 10 pieces of tile.


This job was done for less than $10.00 in materials.

If that doesn’t give you the confidence to pull the project trigger I don’t know what will.


Next on our to do list is replacing the baseboards and steam cleaning the carpet.



GSGreatEscaper said...

I so totally agree with you that clean and new and acceptably cheap is the way to go! Great job! Looking forward to the rest of the transformation.

Carol said...

I think replacing the dated flooring with the tile is the best move you could have made to update the space on-the-cheap. Good luck with the sale.

The Quintessential Magpie said...

Laura, that made a world of difference, and the price is perfect! You. Mr. decor, and Bill did a fantastic job! And the price was SUPER. Great advice to us, too, on the tile size. I love to see where you are going with this.

Praying for a quick sale!



marty (A Stroll Thru Life) said...

The tile looks fabulous. I love your choice. Clean and neutral. Hugs, marty

Something Nice and Pretty said...

I bet it sells now, looks great!

Denise said...

Hi Laura, Mr. Decor and Mr. Bill did a great job replacing the old floor! Congrats on getting the tiles for such a good deal; that helps so much when you're on a tight budget. I can't wait to see which appliances you choose, and then I just know you'll sell your condo soon!

Big hugs,

Denise at Forest Manor

Charm Bracelet Diva {at Home} said...

Great deals and love the new look! What was on the floor before? Linoleum? How tough was that to rip up? Having had our entire first floor tile ripped out by contractors I can attest to just how difficult (and messy and time consuming)a task it is! I never knew what went into laying tile, either. It was quite a process. Glad you're project is moving right along! xoKathleen

Auntie Em said...

Looks great! It is wonderful to have handymen in the family and with those prices for the tile, it was certainly worth the price. I know what you mean about scale. It drives me bonkers to see something out of whack in scale.
People may Pin things like they are all about the DIY but they are usually too lazy to do it themselves and just dream about how it would look. So other than the very rare and unusual person who is willing to tackle doing anything for themselves, most just like to have it done and dusted before they buy. The cheaper it is, the less they are willing to do for themselves.
Hope all the hard work pays off and someone finds your sweet little jewel of a place soon! :)

Rita C. said...

Fantastic bargain and job WELL done! You're almost there! Now raise the price. ;)

Louise said...

Wow. Huge, HUGE bang for the buck!

Lorrie said...

Great job at a great price. Hooray for DIY and handy husbands! (I have one, too)

Karena Albert said...

Great job, Laura, I hope that you get an offer soon...

Love and Hugs,
The Arts by Karena

Shelia said...

Wow, Laura, this does look so nice. You're so fortunate to have a hubby who can do these things too.! Good luck with it.
Be a sweetie,

Shenita @ Embellishments by SLR said...

What a great job they did! The tile looks wonderful! And the price was amazing! You really scored on the tile and the labor!


It is awesome to have a handy hubby and Mr Bill :) My bathroom floor is going to be replaced next month and I'm hoping it turns out nice! All improvements help!

Christine said...

What gets me, is on the TV shows, all the young couples want things all match-y match-y, stainless steal, and granite counter tops.
I'm happy with appliances that work and a roof that doesn't leak.
I guess I'm old fashion.

Great job and I hope it sells quickly.

Joani said...

It looks awesome. So lucky to have these two fellas for DIY projects.

Tammy's in Love said...

Looks great! We didn't have a Mr. Bill so we watched YOUTUBE videos of how to and after watching 3 more times, did the tile in our basement bath ourselves and love it!

Kelley said...

Hi, Laura. We put this same tile in our apartment on Guam (77 cents, 12x12, Home Depot). It really turned out nice, too. Yours looks grand. WHAT A DIFFERENCE!

Hugs and happy highways,

AshTreeCottage said...

I think the floor looks neat and updated. Sadly, many buyers do not have design. I too also like to design my spaces and look for good bones, but others do not. I don't think that HGTV has helped any because all of the home buyers always want updated kitchens and baths and will quickly dismiss a property without them. Good luck with the sale. I will keep you in my prayers.

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Elizabeth Eiffel said...

The boys did a very professional tiling job. A perfect choice of colour and size in the given space. I'm like you Laura - I can't believe that so many people won't tackle small DIY projects. DIY can be extremely satisfying and it allows for more $ to spend on indulgences. Have an enjoyable weekend. Warm regards.

Susan Nowell @ My Place to Yours said...

You found the perfect solution, Laura! And you're so right about the importance of considering scale and proportion no matter what's "in style." Your new floors look great. I'm still praying a buyer will come quickly!

Vickie @ said...

The floors look beautiful! Having just tiled our bathroom floor myself, I know that it looks a lot easier than it is - especially if your subfloor isn't exactly level! Good luck on relisting the condo. Hopefully it will sell right away!

Dee Lapin said...

It's a super update that will get it sold quickly.