A couple spent four years renovating the “worst house on the best street” so their children could be enrolled in better schools.
Jen Rothbury and her husband, Miles, both 36, purchased the run-down four-bedroom house in Bramhall, Cheshire, for £580,000 back in 2015 with plans to transform the space entirely.
And finally after four years of hard graft, the house is complete – and the transformation is out of this world.
Jen and Miles decided to buy the “worst house on the best street” so they could live in the area for less while enjoying the perks of the upscale neighbourhood.
They also wanted to live near “good” schools for their two children, Leo, seven, and Magnus, five, to attend.
With the help of a builder, the couple managed to knock down walls to create more space transforming the four-bedroom home into a large five double-bedroom home.
They also added an extension and created an open plan kitchen dining space, along with two large patios at the back of the house and front driveway.
Jen and Miles ended up sourcing second-hand furniture and “hand me downs” for most of their room furnishings to keep within their budget.
Jen said: “We shopped for all of the decor and soft furnishings gradually after the renovation.
“We spent pretty much all of the budget on the building work so decided to paint everything white and live with ‘hand me down’ furniture for a while until we got used to the space and what would work.
“So we’ve been decorating and ‘finishing’ the house for the last few years, saving up for a new room and then giving it an overhaul so we could save for the next!”
The cost of the renovations for the entire house set the couple back by £140K, but the Rothbury’s couldn’t be happier.
Jen said: “We are pleased with the outcome. The added bedrooms have meant that having guests is easy, the loft space feels like a third floor as we had the staircase widened to feel less like loft stairs, so when guests come to stay it feels as though they have their floor of the house.
“The works to the first floor has given us a lovely sized family bathroom with double sink units and separate bath and shower and the extension which provided us with a good-sized open-plan space perfect for family living.
“Spending the last few years adding more character and personal touches has made it feel less like a house and more like a home and it really feels like a special place to spend time together.
“Advice for anyone looking to renovate. Research your builder well as the cheapest is not always the best option!
“Our builder didn’t come in with the cheapest quote but having worked with him before and knowing his local reputation meant we had no doubts about going with him.
“I’ve heard so many horror stories about rogue builders that I was willing to pay a bit more for reliable and top-class quality!
“Another bit of advice is to make sure you budget for all the finishing touches.
“The build quote won’t cover the finer details such as if you want chrome or brass sockets rather than plastic or lots of spotlights etc. and these numbers quickly add up!”
Breakdown of costs:
Loft extension- £45k
First floor works – £5k
Rear extension – £35k
Kitchen – £24k + Aga £10k = £34k
Patios – £8k
Driveway – £7k