While this 1970s raised ranch technically had all the space this multi-generational family needed, the choppy rooms, dated kitchen, and dysfunctional floor plan made everyone uncomfortable and itching to move. However, a meeting with Divine designer Mariette Barsoum revealed that they actually loved the neighborhood that they lived in, they just weren’t enjoying their house. Barsoum showed them that a top-to-bottom renovation (or shall we say “gut job?”) would not only give them everything that they wanted, but could also be done on-budget and without stress.


The kitchen, entryway addition, and grand staircase were all part of the renovation, but if you ask the kids and the in-laws which area they like best, it’s the lower level. Too-small rooms have been replaced with an open, modern floor plan. An inviting family room complete with a fireplace also opens into an office area. When the children are finished playing games at the table, they can easily put them away in the toy/game closet added specifically to reduce clutter.


Many of today’s families are embracing multi-generational living. Some want to ensure that children have a close relationship with their grandparents, or they want their “snowbird” parents and other guests to enjoy a welcoming area to themselves when they visit. The in-law suite provides everything they need: access to the rest of the family, but peace and privacy when they need it.

The lower level is also more functional than ever with the addition of a mudroom and laundry room. Light pours into all the downstairs rooms thanks to new, larger, energy efficient windows. Radiant in-floor heating was added to warm the space while allowing for heating ducts in the ceiling to be removed. As a result, the ceilings are now higher, visually enlarging the entire downstairs. The popcorn ceiling is a thing of the past.

Mom and dad are happy. The kids are happy. The grandparents are happy. And no one wants to move…ever.

Home renovations can be stress-free and on-budget. Really! Lean how.

Share this:

"After considering three other custom kitchen shops, we are happy to have chosen Divine over the others, and we would recommend your business to anyone considering a high quality custom kitchen."

- B.C. Westborough, MA