Unlike many residential landlords, here in Moregeousland we believe that communal hallways and gardens should be things of beauty. Some landlords may think I’m barking bonkers (and some days Mr M may agree….) but I think it makes for happier, better tenants who stay for longer if everything about the property is fab, not just the inside of their apartment. So often I see other rental communal hallways with shabby woodchip walls, dingy lighting and crappy carpet, or overgrown and ignored gardens full of wheelie bins and weeds – what message does that send to your tenants? That you don’t give a monkey’s about them.
The basics of the communal area of this property were just wonderful: wide stairs, original newel post and spindles, beautiful corbels, coving and ceiling roses but all the walls had been papered over and over again to hide crack, bumps and perishing plaster, there was filthy deep pink carpet, awful cheap lighting, a dingy light well in the top floor ceiling and zero character. Time to put some Uplift into the Up Stairs!
There was lots of umming and ahhing over wallpapers which finally got whittled down to four then mainly involved me getting Mr M to stand still with tear samples whilst I mulled over which one would be perfect. I also found two perfect shelves for incoming post from Homesense, they were very inexpensive but look super glam, like moulded fireplace tops.
The woodwork and doors were painted in a neutral pale walnut colour, as was the newly fitted dado rail. The light paint is hardwearing and washable but also prevents the narrow, high area feeling too closed in with darker colour above. I was a little worried about using black wallpaper in case it made the hallway seem too dark but the one chosen actually feels fabulously decadent. The stripped bannister and newel posts were given a simple stain and matt varnish, a huge new roof window brought lots more light into the top floor, a new charcoal carpet, a heater to warm the air in winter and little additions like a magazine rack for swapping read favourites and a magnet board for tried & tested takeaways help towards more of a feeling of community within the building.
It took about six weeks in all and the communal area has been transformed, the whole place is warmer due to the insulated plasterboard and it’s a total delight to walk into. The tenants who live in the building absolutely love it…..
Now all that’s left to do is the front garden!!
Wallpaper and wall lights : B&Q
Roof light : Fakro
Paint : Dulux pale walnut
Black shelves : Homesense
Magnet board and magazine rack : Ikea
Chandelier : John Lewis