After living room.

After living room.

Home makeover rivals any reality show

  • Sunday, June 27, 2021 9:08am
  • News

Molly McCabe participated in her first home remodel when she was only 12, renovating an 1895 farmhouse on Lopez Island.

Now she could win any of those home improvement reality TV shows.

After earning a Master’s degree in Business Administration and a career in finance, 19 years ago she followed her “passion for making dysfunctional spaces functional, as well as beautiful.”

As a result, her business on Bainbridge Island, A Kitchen that Works, recently won a statewide Excellence in Remodeling award from the Building Industry Association of Washington.

The judging is heavily weighted on the complexity of the job from a structural and design standpoint along with how successful and creative the contractor was at meeting the needs of the homeowner as well as overcoming jobsite issues, McCabe said.

“The entries are very detailed in terms of the work performed, materials used, and the problems that arose prior to, and during construction,” she said.

McCabe did have a budget to work with, but for privacy reasons she could not say what it was, or name where the remodel took place, other than it was in Kitsap County.

But she could describe how extensive the remodel was. She said the front entry was relocated, and a wall was abbreviated to allow everyone entering the house to see the spectacular view the moment they step inside. The kitchen was relocated to another area of the home to provide access to the deck, where the barbecue is, as well as the “glorious view.” The floor plan was reconfigured to allow separate bedrooms for each family member and a new powder room off the entry. Challenges with the lot, that presented themselves after the beginning of construction, required a change in the job and the budget. She said the goal of her business is to help each client find the “sweet spot” between cost and value.

Founded in 2002, A Kitchen That Works LLC has grown from a kitchen design firm to a full-service and licensed design-build firm for residential remodels and is now owned by Molly McCabe and her husband Clive Pardy, who joined the business in late 2010. The staff is small, with just a part-time office assistant, but they have a loyal crew of local subcontractors, McCabe said. The architect for the award-winning home’s exterior was Christopher Gutsche with Ecosmith Design and Consulting, also of BI.

Neither McCabe or Pardy went to a trade school, both were in finance, but “design and construction is in their DNA,” McCabe said. She grew up around designers and architects – her father was a furniture designer. Pardy’s great, great grandfather was a guilder at Buckingham Palace in London, and his grandfathers and father were all in the building/decorating trades. He has a Bachelor of Science in accounting.

And they are always learning. They travel each year to trade shows “to enhance their knowledge base as well as catch up with new product and design offerings.”

The House that Patience Built

The homeowners loved the view, but not the low ceilings, awkward chopped-up spaces and high utility bills. The initial request was for vaulted ceilings, multiple envelope improvements and a cosmetic remodel of the kitchen and first floor bathrooms. They wanted the home to be beautiful, functional, safe, energy efficient and worthy of the fantastic lot it was located on.

Built in 1944, it needed a seismic retrofit. After the start of construction, it was discovered the house had been set on fill dirt and that a large underground fuel tank had leaked for decades. 75% of the home faced demolition and 500 cubic yards of contaminated soil removed.

The remodel included:

• High-efficiency windows, doors and skylights, and a combination of spray foam and batt insulation

• The entire house was rewired, and electrical panels were replaced to accommodate an improved lighting scheme, generator, alarm system, automated window blinds and more

• New sheet rock, flooring, interior doors, kitchen appliances, quartz countertops and fireplace indoors along with cementitious siding, metal roofing and decking outdoors.

• Multi-port ductless mini-splits, hydronic heatin, a heat-recovery ventilator, electric resistant heat in master bathroom and new exhaust fans in each bathroom and the laundry room to ensure even heating/cooling and good indoor air quality.

• All cast iron and lead plumbing pipes were replaced; all new kitchen, laundry and bathroom fixtures.

Before pool and spa area.

Before pool and spa area.

After pool and spa area.

After pool and spa area.

Before master bedroom.

Before master bedroom.

After master bedroom.

After master bedroom.

Before exterior

Before exterior

After exterior.

After exterior.

More in News

362 new COVID cases confirmed in Kitsap

Over the last week, Kitsap’s case rate per 100,000 residents is 1,288.4

U.S. Rep. Derek Kilmer, lower right, talked with the Bainbridge Island City Council via Zoom. Steve Powell/Bainbridge Review photo
Kilmer tells BI how to get federal funds

U.S. Rep. Derek Kilmer told the City Council at a Zoom meeting… Continue reading

Dowdney’s artwork. Courtesy photo
Bainbridge Island briefs

Free home COVID tests Every home in the U.S. is now able… Continue reading

COVID numbers continue to skyrocket

COVID-19 numbers continue to skyrocket in Kitsap County. In a week, the… Continue reading

Kitsap to impose 1/10th of 1% sales tax for affordable housing

Faced with a troubling increase in homelessness in the region that’s been… Continue reading

BI to look at police-court facility, explains sewage spill

The Bainbridge Island City Council will again look at the issue of… Continue reading

Legislative briefs

Control hazing Sam Martinez, a freshman at Washington State University, was found… Continue reading

Gov. Jay Inslee delivers his annual State of the State address in the state Capitol. Governor’s office photo
Inslee calls for action on housing, climate change

Immediate action must be taken to address climate change, the housing crisis,… Continue reading

Vehicles line up at the BISD COVID testing site at the district administrative offices Jan. 10. By 9:08 a.m. 200 rapid tests had been administered by April Murray and the testing team.
BISD makes plans if COVID keeps rising

With the rapid increase of COVID-19 cases, Bainbridge Island School District superintendent… Continue reading

Most Read