I often get asked what some of my favourite makeovers are from Selling Houses Australia and that is always a really hard one to tackle. There is the consideration of how challenging the house it, what the budget allows you to do and of course the people who we work with in getting their home ready for sale. And it got me thinking more about not what is my favourite make-overs but what are some great changes I was able to do with a real problem area. So I have listed three houses that I was able to solve a design issue that added real value to the house.
An Offputting View - The last thing you want to do is see a toilet when you first walk into a room let alone walking up a set of stairs for the first time. We had an amazing property on a river frontage and when you walked up the stairs the ‘view’ you encountered was the open door to a bathroom with the toilet in direct view. Now closing the door is always an option but unless you are policing it you cant always guarantee it will be done. And when you are having open inspections not many doors are closed behind the buyers as they are walking from room to room. I moved the entry door to an adjoining wall which gave direct access to the master bedroom. This meant the master bedroom now had its own ensuite and by placing a mirror opposite the door entry it reflected the view of the stunning river and bushland. This simple change also meant we didn’t have to change any of the existing plumbing so the change wasn’t an expensive one. An ensutie can add tens of thousands of dollars to a home but getting rid of an eyesore, such as looking at a toilet can be priceless.
Odd Floorplan - The floorplan of this house was like a ‘rabbit-warren’ with minimal natural light and the only access to the back courtyard was through a bathroom. Buyers, unable to see the potential and the thought of the expensive task of moving walls was stopping the sale. It was a case of moving two main structural walls which required an engineers report and took a lot of the money from our budget. The bedroom was joined to the existing lounge and opened up the area to create an expansive living room that had not only access to the outdoor area but let in the softness of the garden and much needed natural light. "
A lot of times the thought of doing any structural changes stop people taking the leap in buying a house but by showing the viewers the process of employing an engineer and looking past a basic floor plan this opened buyers eyes to the potential of what seemed like an ‘un-renovatable’ house.
Funtion out of ‘wasted’ space – So many houses have a large rooms that have ‘dead’ areas as many owners don’t know how to not only arrange furniture but to work out how to make it function in a different. A very dated & ugly bar was at the end of a lounge room and the rest of the space became a dumping ground. This house was being marketed to families with small children so a bar was hardly a selling point. I designed a hide-away study that remained open when it was in use and as it was in the family room it meant parents were able to keep an eye on what their children were doing and when not in use the doors closed to give a clean line to the room. Opposite I designed a daybed with storage drawers underneath and floating shelves for books & decorations. This design not only was designed to appeal to the functions of a family but it created much needed storage to stop it becoming a dumping ground.