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Condo Rental Renovation on a Budget with an Urban Farmhouse Feel

I’m so pleased to share a new series for the blog for the next few weeks. I think we’ll call it the “Urban” Farmhouse Rental Renovation.

I know it’s been a while since you’ve heard from me but there has been a lot going on and I’m not just talking COVID-19.

I’ve been busy working with a wonderful client to transform their family condo into a updated rental unit with some farmhouse elements.

No, we’re not talking ship lap but will there be a barn door?? Umm yess!

So I met this wonderful client online and we immediately clicked. The client shared that she had a condo in a pretty desirable part of the DMV that needed a complete renovation.

The condo probably hasn’t seen an update since the 80’s but had a lot of potential.

Where do I start? Maybe the immaculate views from the 12th floor? The almost 2,000 square feet of living spaces? Or maybe the large room sizes?

As you can see the condo has a lot of value and rental potential especially in such a high-demand area in the Metro DC region.

Now let’s get into the planning.

The client shared they wanted a complete update and plans to rent out the unit for the next few years then perhaps move in when they retire.

They wanted a sleek and clean look but yet with a warm feeling. A big request was to give the condo a more modern look with some “farmhouse” elements.

We’re just about outside of Washington DC which is why we’re calling it Urban Farmhouse. Since it’s a rental we’re not getting carried away with the budget (the numbers have to make sense) or a really bold look which means a neutral color palette.

The client likes a little glam which you know is my thing! We’re also going to incorporate a barnyard door, bronze fixtures and a warm-gray color scheme.

So before we really get into this let’s note some rental renovation do’s:

Do your research and make sure you’re working with great contractors and responsive vendors. The client had a contractor family friend they worked with before and had a good relationship.

Highlight all positive aspects of the property such as large living spaces and complement any impressive views like this one…

Depending on your budget and rental market make sure your design plans fall right in line with rental expectations.

Don’t overdo any vivid colors or patterns. Remember it’s a rental that needs to appeal to a larger audience so don’t over do it.

So let’s check out some more before photos and walk through our plans so far…


  • Remove partial wall and two doors to create a more open concept between the kitchen and dining room
  • Move the refrigerator to the end of the opposite wall for a clearer flow into the kitchen and more continuous countertop space
  • New cabinets and hardware
  • Install apron sink
  • New appliances
  • New lighting
  • New paint
  • New flooring
  • New countertops
  • New backsplash
  • Install barn doors for the kitchen pantry with 2″ thick floating shelves

Master Bathroom:

  • Take out old tub/shower combination for a large walk-in shower
  • New vanity, lights, and mirror
  • New shower floor tile
  • New toilet
  • New floor tile
  • New paint

Bathroom #1:

  • New tub/shower combination
  • New toilet
  • New vanity, lights, and mirror
  • New floor tile
  • New paint

Bathroom #2:

  • New vanity, lights and mirror
  • New toilet
  • New paint
  • New floor tile


  • New paint
  • New flooring
  • New closet doors
  • New closet shelves and rods

Other living spaces:

  • All other spaces will get new paint, flooring and lighting
  • New pendant lighting for dining room and wall sconce for the hallway
  • New wall cabinets for the laundry and perhaps new washer/dryer if the budget permits

As you can see we’ve got a lot to do over the next few months. The client wants the place ready to rent by the beginning of summer.

Next up we’ll jump right into the kitchen design so stay tuned!

Want to stay up to date with everything? Then check back next week so you don’t miss out.

p.s. So given you’ve probably been spending a lot of time at home lately… tell me what one thing you would change about your home tomorrow??

p.p.s. Well and let’s face it since most of us have nothing but time on our hands until the COVID-19 restrictions are lifted I thought I’d share what I’ve been streaming.

What I’m binging this week… I have a new found love for HGTV and not really sure why but hey it happened. My current fave is Rock the Block.

It’s a reality competition featuring 4 designers that only have 4 weeks to completely renovate a single-family home. It’s pretty quick with just a few episodes so have fun!

One last final thought… if you’re thinking about working on your next big project don’t go it alone.

Maybe you just moved into a larger home and need help making it functional? Maybe you downsized and need ideas to make your space more efficient? Maybe you’re planning to rent out a property and need help renovating without blowing your budget?

Are you ready…

to get started on your project? Share what you’re working on and we’ll chat about how we can help.

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