Tuesday, October 19, 2010

For all new house owners:things to remember when you do your interiors

I stay in Bangalore and this is based on my experience. It may or may not apply to you. One more thing about interiors is that, you could spend from 1.5 lakhs to what-have-yous? You don't have to go for really high-end ones, but do ponder over the fact that you cannot be buying furnitures or re-doing woodworks every other year. It will cost more in the long run. So, go for a good one while you are at it. Pull out the Mutual funds, beg, borrow, do not steal. :-) Banks offer you loans along with the home loan these days and it is much cheaper than Personal loans. I like minimalism and I went just for the basics to make my house functional.
Area: Super built up: 1615 sq ft. Apartment

Get a good interior designer. If you know a good carpenter, that also works. Benefits of an Interior design company is that you don't have to monitor every detail everyday. They take care of the carpenters themselves, and they share design ideas with you. Having said this, it is your house. Reasearch as much as possible. Be pro-active. Visit the site at least once a week and monitor the work even if you hire an Interior Design company.

Always negotiate the price. The woodworks will be charged per sq ft based on the type that you want.

Kitchen: You can go for modular kitchen or get it done. Research on the ply boards to be used. You don't have to buy them, but at least you won't get cheated. Common Interior designers do not use good brands like Kitply. Ask for hot water resistant ply boards, not just water and termites resistant ones. Trust me, they'll fight back on this, or ask for a lot more mullah. You can go for pre-laminated boards; factory made ones, or laminated ones. I will give you the details if you want. You will be guided by your designer on this. Things that you may have to take care are:

• Check if your kitchen area already has a granite slab. Nowadays, most builders do not give it. If they do, check where are the supporting rods underneath the slab. When you have to cut the granite to fix your hob and chimney, you cannot cut it right where the rods are. I had to make design changes based on this and had to move a shelf on top of the hob for symmetry. Check where the plug point for the hob is. Remember to mark it. Your Interior design guys could miss it. Mine just did. They had to go to another apartment, measure with a scale and get it cut after they had covered the area with ply.

Research for the suction capacity of the chimney. For a normal household with non-veg cooking 750 to 1000 m3/hr is good enough. You can install chimney by 2 ways either using duct mode or by recycling mode. I went for Duct mode. It requires some carpentry work, whereas recycling mode will save you from such modifications but it requires periodic charcoal filter replacement. Ensure the duct doesn’t have many turns and is as straight as possible. 10 ft is the ideal length for the duct. Plan where do you want to keep the gas cylinders. Pipe gases will take some time to reach Bangalore. I used copper wiring and kept the gas cylinders in the utility area. This will avoid any catastrophe in case of a leakage, and I save storage area in the kitchen. Gilma, Faber, Kaff, IFB are popular brands. Go for one with good service. Do not go only for looks, but also for utility (hob and chimney). How easy is it to clean? You will be frying, spilling milk etc.

Tiles: Knock each and every tile and see if there are air bubbles. They tend to break if there are air bubbles.

Wardrobes: Vineer, laminate. Vineer is more expensive than laminate. Options are: Outside Vineer, inside paint, Outside veneer, inside laminate, laminate inside-outside, laminate outside, inside paint etc. You can replace the laminate after some years. Vineering, you have to paint it. It gives the shine and natural polished look, but laminate is good enough too. If you have laminate inside or outside, touch with your palm and feel the laminate for air bubbles. If there are, ask your carpenter to remove it, else it will tear in a few years.

Most important thing is to ensure your carpenters or Interior design guys cover your tiles before the woodwork starts and do not break them. The polish and paints stain and it is a pain to clean. Also, if you are in an apartment, it may be very difficult to get the same type of tiles that the builder has provided if they are broken.
Didn’t know this post would get this long, will add more points later. Or you could add your points too. Hope somebody pays me for this. :-)


Meenakshy said...

If going in for modular kitchen one needs to be double sure that there is no scope of water seepage-leakage near the sink area, including from the slab. As Arunima mentions, the placement of granite or whatever slab on the counter has to be double checked. If it is just "pasted" onto the wall the chances of water entering the wood beneath is quite high. We had to re-do our entire kitchen, turning it form a modular to a slabular one. :)
What we experienced during our time was that the furniture people, irrespective of the location, be it the big ones on the outer ring road or the small ones in Shivajinagar, the factory is somewhere and the most common ones are just brought from there. Do not go by the brand, checkout the prices everywhere. We finally got our sofa one from Shivajinagar at a very good price to a level that people do tend to agree with us. :)

Informative one babe.

austere said...

Very solid post. More. pls.

Stone said...

hmm....will save this post for some day.
some day jab...ambar pe khulegi khidki aur khidki par khula ambar hoga....

ganapati said...

keep that in mind, may be one day i will need it:)

AmitL said...

Great post,Arunima-gave me some hints on some of the pending works for our flats-like,the chimneys.:)
We appointed an architect,too-first we were wondering if it made sense to pay someone to do something we could've done-now,we know it was the right decision-he coordinates with the other agencies, he's regular,he keeps track.:)will write @ some of our experiences,one of these days.