Sarah’s Summer Rental
Cottages and second homes are hot, especially if they’re well priced and show rental potential. Home expert Sarah Richardson and her husband Alexander bought a 1950’s era family cottage to be rented out. In six short weeks, she revives the cottage despite structural surprises, bad weather and remote island location. Sarah’s Rental Cottage proves you can have your piece of paradise and it can pay for itself!
Tommy Smythe joins Sarah and Alexander as they peel back the previous owners’ taste in favour of fresh, bright and connected spaces in line with today’s needs. Even antiquated systems are updated with practical off-the-grid solutions. Not an inch goes untouched in this fast-paced, dollar-wise renovation.
As Sarah, Tommy and Alexander try to stick to plan, they constantly hit roadblocks that require fast thinking and workable solutions. There are no home improvement stores on a tiny island, so absolutely everything must be sent over by barge. Throwing money at a problem is not the answer, as it’ll have impact on the rental’s bottom line. It’s all for one and one for all in this adventure.
The results are nothing short of spectacular! Sarah’s Rental Cottage is a study in relaxed holiday comfort with all the modern conveniences. Every interior and exterior space is recast to maximize the vacation experience in the practical and aesthetic sense, and to embrace the landscape in which this cottage sits. Sarah’s Rental Cottage is so inviting and happy that once you check in you may never wish to leave!
Sarah and her husband Alexander buy a charming 1950’s cottage on an island to renovate as a rental. Her husband initially tentative, Sarah paints the wood-panelled living room white and the floors a showstopper green. She and Tommy check out local vintage finds for the space. The shaky exterior stairs and landing are reinforced after years of use and trees are cleared to unveil the million-dollar view.
The dark cottage kitchen gets the heave-ho in favour of something brighter, more modern and practical for renters. After a humorous game of keep and toss. Sarah and Tommy open the space to the living room, for easy entertaining and to capitalize on the view. Meanwhile, Alexander creates a clearing in the woods and builds a solar shed to serve most of the cottage’s energy needs.
This master bedroom has great bones, with a high vaulted ceiling and lots of windows. Sarah and Tommy use the power of paint to lighten the space and repurpose some of the built-in furniture. It’s a sharp contrast to challenges faced with the cottage’s exterior, where rotted beams need to be replaced, as does peeling and chipped cladding. Sarah and Alexander find the most cost effective way to solve these high-priority issues.
The cottage’s single bathroom has seen better days. Sarah replaces dated finishes and fixtures with stylish, hardwearing solutions. The window is enlarged and Alexander clears trees to bring in more light. Because the cottage’s prime sunset deck has become a meal for carpenter ants, it’s ripped up and replaced. The new deck becomes a hot spot for soaking up rays or sunset cocktails.
It’s the perfect kids’ space, with plenty of bunk beds and waterside location. Sarah votes to keep the nautical theme by using the colour blue as a jumping off point, with more space saving fun touches like hanging baskets. Outside, Sarah, Alexander and Tommy figure out how to save a leaning stonewall, and install a screened porch for inclement weather. This bunkroom is amped up for fun.
Sarah and Alexander clear out a packed storage room and turn it into an extra bedroom, boosting the number of guests this rental cottage can accommodate. Sarah and Tommy’s choice of cheery yellow and an oar rack project give the space a nautical flair. Replacing the rotted, attached deck adds to the privacy of this room, accessible only from outside the cottage. We take an insider’s tour of the entire finished rental cottage, now ready for its first guests!