The Renovation of a Multi-unit


This time last year I was just finishing up a transaction on a 1934 Spanish Triplex in Los Feliz. My client wanted a home as well as an investment.

It was an extremely tough negotiation…not all transactions are pretty, and this one definitely wasn’t—but my client was able to finally realize the dream of owning her own home, with the added bonus that the additional rents completely cover her mortgage!

Immediately after closing we jumped into the renovation of the owners unit. There was a lot of deferred maintenance. We wanted to modernize the layout to truly maximize the social space. Among other things, we restored the original steel windows, refinished the original oak floors, installed a new HVAC, soundproofed the rooms, rewired the entire unit, installed a new washer and dryer, not to mention completely gutting the kitchen and bathroom.

I used a 3D modeling program called SketchUp to design the kitchen and bathroom. This helped insure my client got exactly what she was expecting. Renovations are challenging, in large part to the stress of decision making—but the finished product yields a certain kind of pleasure that I thoroughly enjoy.

Scope creep is something that happens on almost all projects; sometime just a little, and other times it’s a lot. In this case we ended up deciding to also renovate the basement into a full-on airbnb rental. To facilitate this upgrade, we moved the electrical meter, added a new bathroom and reframed the entire space, which allowed for a new hallway, closet and increasing the bedroom’s square footage.

Below you’ll see a collection of photos showcasing the renovation process, from the rough demo to some shots of the final finish.