Beach Condo Renovation; Before and After

Submitted By: Worthing Court

We have a little home-away-from-home on one of the beaches here in NC.
And y’all, when I say little, I mean little.  We’re talking barely over 500 sq. ft. of little.  But that’s perfectly fine with us because it. is. on. the. beach.
Here’s a shot from our deck that I took while we were there last week.

Can you tell how hazy it is?  That’s because it was 105 degrees the day that I took this pic!

I’m going to show you what the condo looked like when we bought it in 2008 and what it looks like today.  But first, take a look at the floorplan to help you get a feel for where all of the rooms are.  Did I mention that we are on. the. beach?

As you look at the befores, imagine a place where nothing resembling any housekeeping had been done, walls that had cracking paint because old wallpaper had been painted over, rusty, crusty, nasty appliances in the kitchen, mildew/mold behind the old wallpaper.  To top all of that off – imagine carpet that was dirty, filthy, sticky, icky, smelly and every other form of nasty that I can think of.  You may ask why I would even consider a place so utterly GROSS?  Did I mention that it. is. on. the. beach?

When you enter the condo, you immediately walk into the hallway that leads to the living room and kitchen.  This is what greeted us when we entered the condo for the first time…….prepare yourself.


This is what that same hallway looks like today.  I’ll talk about the bunkbeds in a minute.

That little black thing you can see on the couch is Diva Dog.

She insisted on making her debut in this blog post.

Step on into the living room.  Diva Dog and Ferocious Guard Dog are displaying themselves for you.

The couch pulls out into a bed.  We had it made using a 6″ thick mattress instead of the standard 4″ ones that you usually find in sleeper sofas.  Now it’s just about as comfy as our bed.

This chair is so cozy.  It’s a great little nook for reading, watching tv or just enjoying the view of the beach.

This is what that same wall used to look like.

Turn around to look at the opposite wall…

that used to look like this.

I refused to sit on this couch while we talked when we first looked at the condo.  It was almost as gross at the carpet.  They told us that all of the furnishings came with the condo.  Um….no thank you.

Let me take a little pause here to tell you the major renovations that we made throughout the condo:

  • removed all of the wallpaper, killed the mildew/mold, sanded and painted the walls
  • ripped out the carpet and padding and replaced with laminate wood floors
  • replaced the air conditioner
  • replaced the sliding glass doors
  • added and replaced ceiling fans
  • replaced the water heater
  • replaced all of the corroded doorknobs with brushed nickel ones
  • added additional electric circuits to the breaker box

Turn around one more time and here’s the kitchen.  (The walls are not as yellow as they appear in the photos.)

I love this backsplash.  It’s made up of different colors of iridescent glass tile with travertine marble sprinkled thoughout.

I love this little fishy canister too.  So do Diva Dog and Ferocious Guard Dog because this is where their treats are kept!

I love this little spit of a kitchen rug that I picked up at Ikea too.

Hold your breath…this is the before of the kitchen.

Don’t ‘cha just looove this little stencil that was above the sink?  And hey – what a great place to hang your keys!

In the kitchen we:

  • replaced the refrigerator and stove
  • added a microwave above the stove
  • replaced the laminate counters with SileStone
  • painted the cabinets
  • replaced the hinges on the cabinets
  • replaced the sink and faucet
  • added a backsplash

Now back up hallway…

See the built in bunkbeds on the right?  The grandgirls love ’em!
Here’s a little closer look.
We replaced the mattresses and went about trying to make the bunkbed cubbies a place where the grandgirls are in their own little world when they’re in bed.  So we added a cute little light with it’s own light switch at the head of each bed.  Each switch has an electric outlet on it to plug in video games or whatever.  You can see that I added some cute dotted ribbon to the shades.
I made these oversize bolsters and added a pop of orange with the throw pillows.
At the foot of each bed, we added these little shelves that we already had.  I shopped around til I found some cute little baskets.  Oh – the little clip-on fans work perfectly when it gets too warm.

And lest you forget – here’s what the view back up the hallway looked like before.

Now I’m going to show you the bedroom and bathroom.  Remember how tiny I said it was – just over 500 sq. ft.  But don’t forget –  Here’s the floor plan again to refresh your memory.

The bedroom and bathroom were just as disgustingly gross as the rest of the place.  Dirty gross walls, nasty, icky, sticky, smelly carpet, old corroded door knobs.  Ew, Ew, Ew!!!These rooms are so small that I couldn’t get a shot of more than one corner of the room at a time, so as you look at the pics just pretend that you’re standing in the middle of room looking around.


Mr. Worthing had the idea that even though we were getting rid of all the furniture, we could keep the mattress temporarily and lay it on the floor to sleep on while we were renovating.  Are you kidding me ???  Don’t you remember my reaction to the couch?

Same corner after.

The before pics may just look like a case of bad decorating.  You’re just going to have to trust me here.  It was just as smelly and dirty as the rest of the place.  I didn’t get too close to the bed especially, in case I might brush up against it.  EW.


Same side of the room after.

I’ll never forget the first night that I spent here.  All of the furniture had been hauled out, including the mattress.  We brought blow up mattresses to sleep on, thank you very much!  Anyway, I don’t think I slept a wink that night.  Not from excitement – but from being so afraid that my hand would slide off the mattress while I was sleeping and touch that nasty carpet!!!!

Before.  These doors were nastier than I can describe.

I’m going to re-purpose them, so I brought them home to clean them up.  Thought I was going to have to pull out a chisel to get all of the gunk off.


This little pillow says “All things are possible with God”.  I got these cute knobs at Anthropologie.
(Sorry for the blurry pic.)

I made the boxpleated bedskirt out of the same fabric that the headboard is upholstered with.

The decorative cording on the headboard is repeated…

…on the bolster pillow…

…and on the boxpleated valance.

You can see that all of the fabrics are repeated in the pillow shams, the bolster pillow (don’t miss the cute little covered button!), the valance and the blackout lined roman shade tucked up under the valance.

In the bedroom we:
ripped up the nasty carpet and replaced with laminate hardwood
replaced the closet doors
obviously, we painted
redid the inside of the closet
replaced the door hardware
added a ceiling fan and an a/c unit
replaced the baseboard heater

Now you get to see the bathroom.  More grody EWness.  Another room so small that you’ll just have to virtually turn your head to look around.

Before.  Look closely at the tub color – hint – it is NOT white.

Just lovely.  As much as I hated sleeping on the floor, imagine how I felt knowing I had to shower in here.  Not good I tell you.

Another before


I found a ready-made shower curtain at HomeGoods and had a sweet friend add the giant “H” monogram.  Hi Theresa!

The reason that I wanted you to notice the color of the tub is because this is what it looks like now.

It’s nice and shiny and clean and white!  Even though the tub/shower surround were filthy and a terrible dark off white color, they were structurally in good shape.  So to save money we had a company called PermaCoat come in to resurface it.  They did a great job and the resurfacing is holding up just fine.

I’ll pull the view back and show you that we also installed a washer/dryer stack where a closet used to be.

It isn’t as “in your face” as it appears to be in the picture.  You might wonder why I would get rid of a closet in a place so small.  There are two reasons:

  • the closet was so gross and musty that I would not put anything in it
  • I wanted to have a washer/dryer here.

Before sink and mirror.  You should have seen this mirror in person.  I can’t even describe it.

You can’t tell it in the photos, but in addition to the lovely dark aqua color that the room was painted, someone had tried their hand at a faux raised swirly pattern thing on the walls.  We had to just replace all of the sheetrock in here.
I didn’t have a convenient place to hang the hand towels, so I found this little magnetic curtain rod at Lowes and stuck it the side of the dryer.
In the bathroom we:
replaced the sheetrock
tore out a closet and added the washer/dryer
replaced the sink and vanity
replaced the faucet in the sink
replaced the faucet and shower head in the tub
replaced the vinyl flooring with new vinyl
replaced the light fixture
replaced the mirror with a mirrored cabinet
replaced the toilet
replaced the door hardware
replaced the shower curtain rod
refinished the tub/shower
That finishes the tour folks.  I hope you enjoyed it.  It took us about four months to complete all of the renovations.  We concentrated on getting it liveable during the renovation.  It still looks a little plain to me, but I have plans y’all!
Let me share this picture that I took from our deck when we were there a couple of weeks ago.  Just by chance I captured the moon during the “blue hour” that Susan from Between Naps on the Porch talked abouthere.

Right now we are praying that Hurricane Irene takes a more eastward path, moving out to sea and not striking our beautiful beaches.

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Cassity Kmetzsch started Remodelaholic after graduating from Utah State University with a degree in Interior Design. Remodelaholic is the place to share her love for knocking out walls, and building everything back up again to not only add function but beauty to her home. Together with her husband Justin, they have remodeled 6 homes and are working on a seventh. She is a mother of four amazing girls. Making a house a home is her favorite hobby.

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  1. This is so cute….and I love that it’s tiny. Always wondered why anyone would want a great big place to take care of at the beach when the whole point is to relax. Bunks are great and love the master bedroom!

  2. I love your decor!! You did a fabulous job. Can you tell me where you got that tile for the kitchen backsplash? I am in love with it and yet I cannot find anything like it. Do you know the manufacturer?

  3. Would love to know where you got your fishy canister. Moving to Maui & would love to have this in my new kitchen. If you wouldn’t mind sharing, please tell me where you got it. Thank you in advance! Great remodel!

    1. Hi Valerie,
      I’m not sure our guest is still monitoring the comments here, but you can click over to her blog (linked at the top of the post) and ask there. I wish I knew more to be helpful! 🙂

  4. Omg I was looking at those condos online,on topsail beach. Came across your bunk beds on pintrist,thought humm……that looks like the condo on topsail beach. And it was! My husband and I have renovated 6 houses here in mi. Looking to buy a fixer upper, maybe we will be neighbors one day.

  5. Hi. Love the website. In these units the water heater was in the bathroom closet. What did you do with it when you tire the closet out to put the laundry in?