When finance industry worker Amynta Wilson bought her house in 2013, it was a typical old two-bedroom terrace with small living and dining rooms, a kitchen that had seen better days, and an outside toilet and laundry.
Today, it’s a showcase for what could be seen as the perfect renovation, with a third bedroom, airy open-plan layout, a sleek modern kitchen and an underground workshop and storage. They even bought a garage to the rear.
“For us, liveability was a big thing, with heaps of storage,” says Wilson, 32, who now has an 18-month-old son. “We wanted to make the house great for entertaining. And now with our son, we can’t go anywhere, so everyone comes to us instead!”
There’s a glass ceiling in the void to let in lots of natural light, big windows and a seamless transition to the outdoor barbecue patio and entertainment area, and a leafy green garden to the back of the 209-square-metre block.
The designer kitchen has Caeserstone counter tops, German appliances and the old flooring has been replaced with hardwood gum. “We also excavated under the house to create even more storage, a cellar and workshop,” says Wilson, who used to jog to work in the city.
Ironically, just as the family was drawing the benefit from the six-month, $500,000 renovation to the Annandale house, they decided to move to the northern beaches to be closer to Wilson’s parents. So their dream home is now on the market.
“We’ll miss living here terribly,” Wilson says.
The secret to Wilson’s success, she feels, was living in the house for three years before beginning the renovation. During that time, she checked out other homes’ styles, brought home samples of materials and finishes, and engaged a great builder to oversee the process.
“They’ve done a spectacular renovation with two living areas, and we’re getting lots of interest,” says agent Robert Clarke of Belle Property Annandale. “But if anyone wanted to do any more work, there’s still potential for a second bathroom and a studio over the garage.”
Clarke is selling the three-bedder with a price guide of $1.6 million, with an auction scheduled for March 23.
What the experts say
Kathlyn Loseby, President of the NSW Australian Institute of Architects, recommends taking time to select an architect whose work you like and who you can get on with, as well as a quantity surveyor to prepare a realistic plan of costs.
“Also, make sure the brief equals your budget and add in a contingency of typically 10 per cent. Do a really good job with a minimum of things rather than trying to spread your money over too huge an area.”
Archicentre Australia director Peter Georgiev says to remember that only fools rush in. Spend time checking out everything about the property first; you don’t want to install a magnificent designer bathroom before sorting out the rising damp problem.
“Be thorough in your assessment before pouring money into it,” he advises. “Often old buildings need remediation work before you start focusing on the new bits. Work out a holistic design strategy, then work on a budget you can realistically afford.”
Diana Ribarevski, head of interior design at Coco Republic, says that renovating a home is still hugely in vogue today, especially if it’s possible to expand its footprint or cleverly add value by reconfiguring its spaces.
An old house doesn’t necessarily demand a period renovation, either. “Juxtaposing a period home with a contrasting contemporary-style renovation always works extremely well,” she says.
Three more renovated homes to try
A four-bedder above Peach Tree Bay, which thanks to a designer renovation, features Limewash flooring and light-filled, open plan living areas.
Geoff Smith of Ray White Lower North Shore will take the home to auction on April 4.
A townhouse-style apartment with views over Berrys Bay, revamped to include a Caesarstone kitchen with induction cooking, a combustion steam oven and integrated appliances.
Stone McMahons Point agent Annika Bongiorno is preparing for an April 13 auction.
A handsome terrace house renovated to retain its original heritage character, but with contemporary additions – like a deep-set entertainer’s garden – that keep family living in mind.
James Price of Hudson McHugh will take the residence under the hammer on April 4.
This article was first published in www.domain.com.au. Here is the link to the original article: https://www.domain.com.au/news/we-wanted-to-make-the-house-great-how-an-inner-west-couple-pulled-off-the-perfect-renovation-806576/