In a past life, Nikko Lindley was a California real estate appraiser for 20 years.
A year and a half ago, she heeded the advice of a close real estate agent friend in Atlanta, headed east, and set up her one-woman shop, Linden Investments, to start embarking on home remodels.
At first sight, Lindley fell for the details of an ailing, circa-1920 bungalow in Old Fourth Wardâ€”the expansive porch, French doors, scruffy hardwoods, high ceilings, and divided-light windowsâ€”but the property would present surprises (happy and not) she hadnâ€™t bargained for.
The resulting remodel, listed this past weekend for $669,000, is the product of â€śa yearlong labor of love and aggravation over every single detail,â€ť as Lindley puts it, and it offers some fresh design ideas beyond whatâ€™s become standard in Atlanta.
â€śThis is my most ambitious project and most stressful, as I had quite a number of issues with contractors and delays,â€ť Lindley said in emails this week. â€śI agonized over every single detail, probably more than I should have, but I think the results were worth it.â€ť
The bungalow stands a block west of Boulevard near Central Park, which means about four blocks from Ponce City Market. Beyond the functional, brick L of a porch (with its billowing curtains), the home serves up three bedrooms and two bathrooms among 1,648 square feetâ€”not exactly tight, but not huge by Atlanta standards.
Moving past the living roomâ€™s reclaimed-wood fireplace mantle and a rustic chandelier Lindley designed for the dining space, the kitchen is contemporary with a layout dictated by the old.
â€śWhen we took down the plaster in the kitchen, I was delighted to find the original chimney chase with a coal chute,â€ť said Lindley. â€śThe wine and bar area was specifically designed around keeping this feature.â€ť
Elsewhere, she said, â€śI made the tough decision to replace almost all of the windows due to energy efficiency but kept the original style. I purposely left the interior color scheme as white and black knowing that the next owner would be able to add wonderful pops of color with artwork and furniture elements.â€ť
Most of the original doors were in good enough shape to keep, and the sliding master bathroom door was salvaged from elsewhere in the house.
â€śThe panes can be frosted for privacy, should an owner wish,â€ť said Lindley, â€śbut I kept [the door] clear as the view into the bathroom is just so lovely.â€ť
When it comes to outdoor options, the expansive front porch works in concert with a fire pit area at the propertyâ€™s back edge, under the shade of mature trees. Like the driveway parking, itâ€™s bordered by sleek, horizontal, black-painted fencing.
Lindley had the home staged by Design2Sell, and the vanities, reclaimed wood wall, barn doors, and kitchen shelves are the work of Gatsby Timber.
â€śWhile I wanted something contemporary and open, I wanted to ensure the architectural integrity of the home remained intact,â€ť she said. â€śEvery design detail was thoughtfully considered and agonized over, and I hope it shows.â€ť