By CATHI AYCOCK
You love the location.
You want one-level living but hate the outdated floor plan. Sometimes you imagine what is possible.
“We wanted to downsize. And we wanted most of the living area to be on one level. Which is a pretty big order in Brentwood,” says Jenna Lassiter, who says she and her husband didn’t want to leave the city they have called home for decades.
When a home hit the market that fit those specifications, Lassiter knew they had to act quickly.
“We looked at it one night and bought it the next morning. Four people called the same day and made an offer. But we called first,” Lassiter said with a laugh.
And though the location of the house was perfect, the floor plan and design elements were anything but.
“We knew we were going to have to take almost everything out, flooring, bathrooms, kitchen, and start over. The entire remodel took almost a year,” Lassiter says.
The couple tore out a wall that separated the kitchen from the family room, removed a partial wall that closed in a staircase and raised the ceilings in the living rooms and master bedroom. All of the bathrooms were gutted and refitted with new cabinetry, countertops and tile.
Far from being overwhelmed at the prospect of gutting a home, Lassiter was excited.
“We have lived in five homes and we have rebuilt them all. I love finding a house that has great potential and then creating something fresh and new,” Lassiter says.
One of the biggest projects was the kitchen redesign. Moving walls and maximizing light was a goal, as was creating a large, walk-in pantry.
“We took out a wall in the kitchen and moved it back three feet to make a walk-in pantry. We also turned a small study into a laundry room and created a study out of a huge, unused portion of the master bedroom,” says Lassiter.
While the avid design and re-do pro loves the process of creating new space and design, she recognizes that it can be overwhelming for some.
“If you love the location, take a contractor or designer to walk through the house. You’ll be surprised at what changes can be made to make a so-so house your dream home,” Lassiter says.
Realtor Judy Williams with Judy and Dick Williams Real Estate Team with Crye-Leike agrees with Lassiter and counsels her clients.
“In this market, clients need a clear idea of what they want. But they should recognize that there are many ways that a less-than-perfect house can be great if the location and bones of the house are good. Paint can take of more than many people realize. Even a custom built home is rarely perfect. After it is built, homeowners often discover things they wish were different. Being open to possibilities helps you uncover a treasure,” Williams says.
Even with all of the renovation and remodeling projects that are complete, Lassiter has more on her to-do list.
“I hated the brick, it was a strange pink. We had the entire house painted and added new windows. Now I want to add shutters,” laughs Lassiter.
From a house that had the perfect location, but was perfectly awful. Jenna Lassiter and her husband created their dream home with a little imagination and a lot of work.