Get all the details of the makeover from Selling Houses Australia Series 7.
Jenny, husband David and their 2 young sons were keen to live the Aussie dream. They moved to Victoria from the UK seven years ago and found their perfect bush home in Selby, in the Dandenong ranges. The couple had big plans to renovate the dilapidated house, but sadly they were not to be.
Jenny had been diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis in her 20’s, but it had never really given her any trouble until last year. Her health is now going downhill fast. She can barely negotiate the steps in the multi-level pole home, she struggles to open doors and is too sick to work. David is now the sole breadwinner for the family and works long hours in Melbourne.
As a result, their dreams of renovating have fallen by the wayside, and the house is falling down around their ears. They need to sell up to move to a single level home as soon as possible before Jenny becomes a prisoner in her own home.
Summary of works – Inside
The house was on two levels, so Shaynna decided to focus on the main living area upstairs and the dingy entrance hall downstairs. The entry walls were brown brick, making the house feel oppressive and depressing, so Shaynna covered the brick with plasterboard and painted it a light neutral colour. A new front door added to the street appeal and a new ceiling light brightened the area.
The stairway was dark and foreboding so the wood panelling was painted and the stairs re-carpeted.
The lounge/dining area was very cluttered, so Shaynna kept just a few pieces of the existing furniture as they worked well with the style of the house. One of the biggest issues was the fibre ceiling with dark brown beams. It made the room feel incredibly gloomy, but a quick spray with ceiling white visually pushed the ceilings back up and brought light into the room. The walls throughout the house were painted in Taubmans Endure “Winterhaven” and trims in ¼ strength of the same shade. This created a light, neutral backdrop. The whole are was re-carpeted, new lighting and blinds were added and the room was dressed with cushions and accessories to give a brighter, more modern feel.
The kitchen was extremely dark due to yet another brown fibre and beam ceiling, so this was sprayed white for an instant lightening effect. Although the kitchen was dated, the cupboards were in good condition so Shaynna decided to keep them. Resurfacing Australia sprayed the whole lot, doors, drawers, uprights and bench tops to look like a brand new kitchen!
The walls were painted to match the rest of the house and a shiny new cooker and range hood were added. The floor tiles were broken so the whole floor was replaced with Generoclic. New ceiling lights completed the look.
All the doors in the hallway had holes in so these were replaced and new handles fitted. New carpet and light fixtures were fitted.
The two children’s bedrooms had recently been painted so these were just de-cluttered and dressed.
The master bedroom was extremely dark and dismal so this was painted and carpeted for a fresh, light feel. New window treatments and lights were fitted and the small balcony outside was repaired and painted to give a more attractive outlook. The ensuite shower tiles were literally falling off as the shower had never been waterproofed, so this was rectified and new tiles were installed. The shower base was sprayed and the tapware and shower screen were replaced.
The main bathroom was gloomy but the vanity was in good condition so the doors and uprights were sprayed. Shaynna decided to leave the wooden vanity top as it added character. The shower, bath and tiles were all sprayed to match and a new shower screen and tapware were fitted.
The toilet seat was replaced and the toilet was painted.
New artwork and accessories were added throughout the house to give a cheerful and more modern feel.
Summary of works – Outside
The garden was a jungle, but the bush setting was stunning. Charlie wanted to keep its charm, but tame it a little by cutting back plants and weeds to create a manageable garden. The front needed a great deal of clearing and the removal of a couple of dead trees to bring light into the block. Mass planting in this situation has little impact so Charlie focussed the planting near the front entrance, using low maintenance New Zealand Flax to create a sense of arrival.
One of the property’s biggest assets was a huge deck at the front. It was dilapidated and dated, but painting the railings in Taubmans Viking Grey helped to give it a modern look. The deck itself was also painted and the area dressed with potted plants, outdoor furniture and a BBQ, all from Bunnings.
The house itself was painted in Taubmans “Adolescence”.
With the front yard under control, Charlie turned his attentions to the jungle out the back. Rather than spend his entire budget on clearing, he decided to focus on the area in front of the archway, then created a pathway so people could go and see the size of the entire block.
The back deck was unattractive and unsafe so it was ripped up and a new one constructed. The lattice and roof structure was also ripped down to let more light into the kitchen and open the garden area up. Charlie then finished off with some similar furniture to the front deck for continuity and added some big impact coin spot ferns.