Granny Flat Gets Complete Transformation with Contemporary Finishes in Crofton Downs, Wellington

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chair and couch in living room

This 1960s Wellington home had seen several renovations over the years but was about to undergo its biggest change yet. A new granny flat providing sophisticated separate living transformed an underperforming space into a serene sanctuary for one.

Before After
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When Elizabeth bought her 1960s weatherboard home in inner-city Crofton Downs, it had already been through several renovations. But she had one more significant change in mind that would truly transform the home – the addition of a granny flat. 
The downstairs area she hoped to alter did have an existing bathroom, but she wanted to reconfigure the space to include a kitchen, living area, and laundry so that it offered fully self-contained living. Not sure where to start, she reached out to her local Refresh Renovation Consultant Jenelle Winstanley to arrange a free consultation to discuss ideas, goals, and the Refresh process. 

A Flat for Mum

Jenelle met with Elizabeth in her home to understand the space first-hand and to listen to what she wanted to achieve. Elizabeth wanted to create the flat so that her mum could live with the family, but still have her own space and independence. A room and en suite were not enough – there also needed to be a laundry, living area, and kitchen. Being warm and dry was another essential.
The downstairs area had plenty of potential, with windows letting in copious natural light. But the planning would have to be carefully considered to make maximum use of the available space. And it had to be stylish enough for Mum!
Jenelle was able to draw on her existing network of local designers to translate everything Elizabeth needed into working concepts and present a proposed budget. Once both parties were clear on the plan, it was time to make a move.

Transformation Underway

A granny flat may be a small space, but that doesn’t mean it’s a small job! In fact, a large team of different tradespeople and professionals was needed to transform the plain downstairs room into a self-contained living space. Thankfully, Jenelle had an existing network of trusted locals she could contract.
Plumbers, builders, electricians, painters, joiners, floorers, and more were all expertly managed by Jenelle, so that the entire process was simple and stress-free for Elizabeth. Instead of having to source multiple quotes, and try to line up competing schedules, she could relax knowing that Jenelle had everything taken care of, from the big details – like the council consent paperwork – to the small, like skip bin hire! Elizabeth found that Refresh truly did offer a complete service, from design through to delivery.

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A Brand-New Space
Within a mere 50m2, Jenelle’s team created a truly beautiful living space that is perfectly suited for Elizabeth’s mum. The old walls were re-gibbed and insulated, a new bi-fold door was installed to lead out onto the deck, joinery was repaired and replaced, and a top-to-toe interior make-over was carried out to create a serene sanctuary for one. Foundation issues were discovered on one of the exterior walls, but Jenelle managed this repair challenge and kept the project on track.
The galley style kitchen has a minimalist look with clean lines that maximise the space. Push touch cupboards, an integrated extractor fan, and recessed sink all contribute to the sleek, contemporary feel, while the neutral colour palette keeps things feeling bright and light. Adjoining the kitchen is a cosy lounge space, with attractive doors opening to the sunny deck.
The master bedroom also has large, French style doors that bathe the room in natural light and offer access to the outdoor space. Modern fixtures, white fittings, and large mirrors enhance the uncluttered design of the bathroom and laundry spaces. 

Final Thoughts

Jenelle and her team took an uninspiring downstairs room and transformed it into a beautiful, modern flat. Careful design and elegant finishes created a welcoming, stylish and supremely functional space that truly feels like a home. Carefully curated landscaping has added to the attractiveness of the outdoor deck area and the property as a whole.  
Jenelle is delighted with the result: “This project was a large undertaking, but we are all thrilled with the outcome. Elizabeth now has a beautiful, self-contained flat as part of her home that not only gives her options but adds value to her home. The kitchen in particular looks fantastic, with the beautiful feature windows and large, full-length backsplash. This was a truly fantastic transformation.”
Supplies were sourced from Resene, Mitre10, GIB, and Robertson.

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This project was completed in
June 2023
Project description
Granny Flat Build
New Zealand
Elizabeth Thomas
Project duration
11 months
Cost estimate
Actual cost
Crack in the foundation discovered and needed repair.
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Mark Morrison is Renovation Consultant of Morrison Enterprises Ltd, a franchisee of Renovation Franchise Ltd, doing business in Wellington

Jenelle Winstanley is Renovation Consultant of Morrison Enterprises Ltd, a franchisee of Renovation Franchise Ltd, doing business in Wellington.

Actual costs vary by project. Plan ahead to reduce the impact of industry changes or disruptions. For more information see here.

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