Archives

From 70s relic to contemporary stunner

Injecting older homes with a whole lot of style Part 2

Do you dream of turning a rambling farmhouse into the quintessential country retreat or dragging a creaking Victorian into the present day with a sleek, modern makeover?

When we think of renovating it’s often these homes that come to mind. Highly sought after (with a price tag to match), with ageing wiring, stumps and dated layouts, costs for these fixer-uppers can skyrocket before anyone’s even started swinging a hammer.

So what about tackling a home from a less popular era like the 70s, 80s or 90s? Could there be one tucked just around the corner from that dreamy California Bungalow crying out to be updated?

While they might not have the initial street appeal these homes can really shine with a little love and offer excellent value for money.

Ask the experts

In Part 1 of this story we heard from Wayne Zantuck of Wayne Zantuck Design and Landscape Construction. Now, Dugald Campbell from Edifice Construction and Adrian Kowal from Kowelec share their ideas.

We’re also lucky enough to be able to show you the transformation of a 1970s Castlemaine home purchased from Waller Realty in 2015. From 70s relic to sleek, contemporary home.

“I think the best place to start with homes of these eras is by opening up the floor plan,” says Dugald. “This will bring in more light and create living spaces more in line with current trends.”

“One of the great thing about these homes is that the trusses usually extend to the external walls so removing internal walls isn’t an issue, ” he adds.

Dugald also suggests using skylights and solar tubes to bring in more light and one of the simplest renovation options of all – paint!

For our 70s transformation everything from the walls and lintels to door jambs has been given a coat of bright white and the change is striking.

Princess st Dining

Electrics can be a significant cost when renovating. Adrian says cabling in these homes is generally in good condition and won’t require re-wiring.

“We tend to find most fittings are compliant and safe and if switchboards do need to be upgraded it’s a pretty easy job,” he says.

Both Adrian and Dugald recommend checking how much power is at the property as mains may need to be upgraded if renovations include adding swimming pools or large air conditioning units.

Bathrooms are often a sticking point in houses of this era. Dated and dingy, gutting them is often seen as the only option. But with some simple changes like new tiles and taps, a bit of re-grouting and paint they can be brought back to life.

See the transformation above. New vanity, taps and toilet and suddenly this dated relic is looking right on trend.

When it comes to bathrooms no one likes to share. Homes of this era are more likely to have an ensuite than your ageing Edwardian and, while it might not be the one of your dreams, Dugald says this can be a real advantage.

“Cosmetic changes like replacing old style shower bases and screens with modern walk-in showers and updating tired tiles and vanities can all be done for a lot less than the cost of adding a new bathroom,” he says. “When it comes to managing a budget this can be a real advantage.”

Next time, local interior decorator, Lynne Mewett from Creative Ambience shares some ideas for simple upgrades in the kitchen and living areas.

Renovation images by @lynchmobmedia

Bought and sold in less than three weeks

The owners of this contemporary property in Penhallurick Street, Campbells Creek always planned to downsize and move closer to the centre of Castlemaine. What they weren’t expecting was for that to happen in less than three weeks!

When a property in Templeton Street, Castlemaine came on the market through Waller Realty they knew it ticked all the boxes, but with their home not even listed they weren’t in any position to buy.

Tom Robertson from Waller Realty encouraged them to put the house in Campbells Creek on the market immediately. Having just sold a similar property he had a list of prospective buyers looking for this style of home so he felt sure interest would be high.

He was right. After just one open for inspection they had an offer well above their expectations. They were also the successful purchasers of the property in Templeton Street. A wonderful result for everyone involved!

If you would like to speak with Tom about your property contact our Castlemaine office on 03 5470 5811, call Tom on 0408 596 871, or email him at tom@wallerrealty.com.au

 

Thinking of Selling in Winter

Regardless of the time of year you decide to sell, there are some absolute must-dos:

  • Thoroughly clean your property from top to bottom – inside and out
  • Trim overgrown gardens; remove weeds and dead growth and refresh garden beds with mulch
  • Address any off-putting maintenance issues, such as peeling paint, worn or marked carpets, cracked tiles, dirty grout and loose or rusted gutters (if you’re selling a knockdown or “renovator’s delight”, this step often isn’t necessary)
  • Banish any pet smells
  • Furnish the home in an attractive but not overly cluttered or personal way, to give potential buyers a perspective on room sizes and to present the home in its best light
  • Pay for professional photographs and good marketing
  • Choose an inspection time that will maximise daylight.
  • For chilly spaces, ensure you pre-heat the property to a comfortable temperature. This is the time to take advantage of that lovely open fire if you have one!
  • Consider baking to circulate a pleasant smell and to use the oven to warm up the place. This is the only time when baking is advised.

The only time when it’s a bad idea to sell in winter is if the garden is the only highlight of the property.

Perfectly Pitched

 

Brown Street Castlemaine

The owners of this property in Brown Street, who had not sold a property before, are very grateful that they chose to go with Waller Realty, a real estate agency which they perceive to have the capacity to provide comprehensive team support during the sale process.

From the outset they felt that the marketing was spot on and that the material was perfectly pitched. They were delighted that Tom Robertson not only understood their property but that he was able to tap into expansive networks and extend the marketing reach.

Tom Robertson

Tom Robertson

In this case the owners also felt that the extensive team support and back up at Wallers meant that Tom Robertson had the capacity to devote the time required to meet their individual needs. They felt that many real estate agents would not only have not been able to do this but would have taken the first offer. They were very  impressed that Tom followed up every lead, never missed any enquiries, had outstanding negotiating skills and achieved the best possible result for them.

Keep Fire Safe

wood-burning-fireplace1Use these safety tips for cleaning out your fireplace to reduce the risk of fires:

  • Have your chimney swept. You should be doing this each year before winter in order to get rid of soot and creosote buildup. Hire a certified chimney sweep to perform this job.
  • Have your chimney inspected. A chimney sweep can check for signs of deterioration or damage, such as loose bricks or cracks. If you use a chimney liner, the chimney sweep will also inspect it to make sure it’s still in good condition.
  • Install a chimney cap. This serves as a cover for your chimney, which prevents birds and other wildlife from getting in and building nests or getting into your home’s interior. A chimney cap also keeps rain from coming down your chimney. If you have one already, make sure it doesn’t show signs of damage.
  • Skip softer woods. Burn hardwoods that have been kept dry for about six months, such as oak. Softer woods, especially those that contain resin, create higher levels of creosote, which is a flammable substance.
  • Keep fires small. Stick to smaller fires, rather than piling on a bunch of logs. Bigger fires produce more smoke, which results in more creosote inside your chimney. The excess heat from these larger fires can also damage your chimney.

These safety tips for cleaning out your fireplace will help make your home more appealing to buyers and provide them with peace of mind.