2039-2045 S. FOREST AVE, TEMPE

Cool sandblasted duplex with rusted steel roof
BEFORE
Cool sandblasted duplex with rusted steel roof

AFTER

When we first looked at these two foreclosed duplexes about three months ago there were three For Rent signs for other apartments on the street.  They’re all still there.  Despite being close to the Tempe, ASU campus it’s hard to rent anything right now because there are so many new apartment complexes all going after the same students. Our strategy is to make them look great, and the tenants are responding. Here's what we did.

Where practical, we like to salvage debris created during demolition. The three foot tall concrete entry monuments are old sidewalk pieces tilted up on end. The painting is a black and white copy of Picasso’s 1907 Les Demoiselles d'Avignon.

Cool sandblasted duplex with rusted steel roof

Older process photos go here when they arrive, and if you feel it necessary as originally
proposed however I feel the image below says it all, as does the BEFORE image at the end.

Sandblasting also removed years of grime and exposed the aggregate on the bottom side of the sidewalk monuments.

The brick used for the new entry is from the pathetic little veneer demo’d from the building.  Their perforations were left exposed. 

Instead of ABC we used mortar and concrete bits leftover from demolition. 

The unit already had the little eyebrow eave at the entrance doors.  We scabbed on 2x6 rafter tails to extend the shade and sense of arrival.

The new roof panels are corrugated, uncoated 22 gauge steel.  We paid $1 per s.f. for them from Bunger.
Yucky brick veneer on stucco



Sandblasting removed the paint and the stucco from the exterior walls.  The cast metal jar light is one of my favorites.  We use it over and over. 

The old tire hangs from a play equipment swivel and revolves in the wind.  It’s a memory of a swing set that was left by a previous tenant but hauled off by a junk man before we could use it.

The horizontal wood slats are salvaged from the old fence along the alley.  I wanted to create a privacy panel between each tenant’s front door.

 

Cool sandblasted duplex with rusted steel roof


We filled an old galvanized tub with chunks of concrete debris before topping it off with three inches of mud.  It acts as a step stone between the units.  The dry ground cover is left over chunks of brick. 

There was a nasty leak under the tub in one of the units.  We had to tear it out to fix it, so it got a whole new bathroom.  Fixtures are from our favorite store IKEA.

I stole the toilet paper idea from Matt and Maria Salenger’s house.  As I recall they had more rolls closer together and it looked better. 



Concrete stepping stone


Cool sandblasted duplex with rusted steel roof

AFTER

To be successful buying foreclosures we have to be able to rent them. At this writing we’re still three weeks away from finishing remodeling but they’re all rented, thank goodness. Our marketing plan and the oddity of the units is working but I’m still nervous. We just started on another four-plex (hopefully ready to rent December 1) and should close next week on another one. I hope they’ll be ready to rent January 1, 2010. So far so good. Each new tenant that signs a lease is a relief, hope this continues.

Yucky ranchburger duplex in Tempea

BEFORE