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Archive for January, 2008

The “before” shots

This is what the place look like at the inspection.

Charming decor, don’t you think?

You can see there is a lot we can do to jazz up the place 🙂

Living room
Note the uncanny resemblance between the furniture and Frasier’s dad’s chair

Living room (small)

Dining room
No, you’re not in an antique store …

dining.jpg

Balcony
No courtyard, so this is our outdoor area.

balcony.jpg

Master bedroom
Don’t you just love split beds?

bedroom.jpg

“Walk in” wardrobe
Generous description by the real estate agent …
walkin.jpg

Kitchen
Not very exciting but it has everything we need, we’re not planning to do any work on it.

kitchen.jpg

Study
The previous owner was a lawyer and the study reminds me of an old law firm …

study.jpg

Spare room
This will be our gym/junk room

spare.jpg

So you know what it looks like beforehand … the coming posts will go through our thinking on how to renovate the place.

Stay tuned!

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We have been looking for a place to buy for … way too long.

Our criteria read like a real estate for sale ad:

  • 3 bedrooms
  • 2 bathrooms
  • At least 1 undercover garage
  • Close to transport
  • Less than 30 minute travel time to the city
  • Quiet
  • Not too old
  • Practical floor plan (no strange hallways etc)

Of course the devil was in the details. So many places we looked at ticked all the boxes but one. And sometimes a place looks really good on paper (OK on domain.com.au) but when you’re there it just doesn’t “feel right”. That’s quite annoying because house-hunting is such a time-consuming exercise, and at times it felt like we were wasting our time for nothing.

We didn’t find anything for a long time, then late last year we started to have some luck with the search. I think there were about 5 properties that we seriously considered buying. The first two were practice runs in retrospect, we learnt what questions to ask and how the negotiation process worked.

Then one Saturday in early December, we saw 3 properties that we were keen on. It’s always feast or famine, right?

Like any good corporate citizen, out came the butcher paper and textas so we can compare the pros and cons of each place.

mini-list.jpg

J actually liked another place better because it was fully renovated, and it was close to shops. But I wasn’t as keen because the living area was very small. Once you put in a sofa and dining table, there was barely any room to move. Also they didn’t have gas cooking, which is a big minus in my book.

So at the end we chose a place which has a big living area (separate living and dining rooms), but we had to forgo a courtyard. Also we needed to renovate the place somewhat. Although it wasn’t a very old building (7 years), cracks were starting to appear on the walls and the carpets were worn out. I think if we needed to make structural changes to the property (e.g. new kitchen) we would’ve shied away from it. But the changes are mostly cosmetic and it also allow us to “make it our own”.

So we made an offer and it was accepted, and the rest is history! (Actually we went through some heartache between the acceptance and the exchange of contracts, but this blog is about positive stuff.)

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Welcome to our blog!

I’ve been wanting to put a blog together for some time and finally got around to do it.

The main motivation of this blog is share with you our journey to create our new home. It has been interesting thus far – there are many decisions to be made and lots of money to be spent!

We’re very happy with progress and if things go to plan we’ll be moving in less than 3 weeks!

So welcome – and enjoy the trip!

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