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Under the skin of the letting market

Here we share news and views on both the local letting market in & around Oxfordshire and all planned and recent legislation.


The biggest and smallest kitchens of Bricks and Mortar’s summer


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It has been a busy but triumphant week for Bricks & Mortar, our buildings and maintenance division, as the team completed their biggest and smallest kitchens. Their biggest kitchen of the summer was in a family house in Headington and their smallest kitchen was in an apartment in Central Oxford.

Creating a kitchen for a family home

The team completely reconfigured the kitchen at a Headington family house, an existing managed property. Previously, its layout was complicated and felt cramped, so the team rose to the challenge to design a more spacious kitchen.

Throughout the project the team sought to combine a sense of effortless design with functionality. They knocked down and constructed walls to transform the kitchen’s shape and create an open-plan living space, giving the ground floor an intuitive and comfortable layout. The adapted design also allowed them to add an additional bathroom, which is almost essential for a family home.

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To establish a feeling of continuity to the layout they laid floor tiles in the entrance hall, which were sustained through the kitchen and into the bathroom. The tiles also serve a practical purpose, as they are easy to clean and hard wearing. An island unit achieved both function and comfort, creating a new workspace where the tenants could cook while looking out of the window to the garden. These changes transformed the house, creating a better home for the tenants and allowing the landlord to maximise rental income and achieve capital appreciation.

Maximising space in a cupboard kitchen

The team also upgraded a small cupboard kitchen in a Central Oxford apartment to make it feel bigger and lighter. The first important step was taking out one unit, which meant the tenant would be able to stand and move around in the kitchen more easily without losing much work space. They also reconfigured the kitchen so that it had an “L” shape rather than a “U” shape, which created much needed floor space.

It was not only the layout that Bricks & Mortar used to their advantage; they also installed new units designed to maximise space. They selected white cupboards with a gloss finish, which reflect the light and create the illusion of a bigger space. The units also optimise storage efficiency, and even include handy spice and wine racks, thereby freeing up room on the work surface. By installing integrated appliances, including a washer/drier, fridge and extractor fan, the team made the kitchen feel simplified and clutter free.

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The team’s attention to detail extended to the lighting, where they fitted spotlight LED lights, which brightened the space and were recessed to look more natural. And what’s a new kitchen without a fresh lick of paint? They thoroughly redecorated the kitchen to include a smart new floor and attractive tiles. The team did a great job on both properties, and it is no wonder that they were let to great tenants quickly.

Whether you are a landlord, homeowner or investor contact Bricks & Mortar to transform your home. For more information please contact the team on 01865 302350.