Why did you decide to purchase your home?
We needed a large house because my brother was living with us while recovering from a brain injury. We didn’t have a massive budget and it was in an area we’d been renting in. We could also see it had lots of potential.
What did you love about it? We loved the space the house offered. The separate living spaces and the studio met our requirements. The location was also ideal; a neighbourhood I had lived in for five years already and an area we both really enjoyed. We thought the setting was quite grand with its outlook and proportions. The views over the upper harbour on one side and Waitakeres on the other, and the northwest-facing aspect were also very appealing. What did you not like about it? It needed a complete makeover. It was tired and had some quirky additions and odd things that had been done over the years that needed undoing. There were many things we wanted to improve, like the stark white exterior and many of the interior aesthetics. The pool fence was also very ugly and made swimming quite unpleasant as the wooden railings made it look like a cage rather than inviting and fun.
Were there any issues you needed to fix? As is often the case, we didn’t realise the extent of the project until we started the renovation. We discovered floors were not at all level and that the upstairs balconies weren’t watertight, which was causing leaks into the lounge. We had to completely replace both balconies at great expense for very little visual change. We also had to remove an unused chimney which was taking up a huge amount of space. The pool deck wasn’t in good shape, either. We started removing the top layer, only to find the joists were rotten, so we had to do a complete rebuild of the pool decking.
KITCHEN/DINING/ LIVING The granite kitchen bench was an investment piece which has become one of Cathy’s favourite features. The couple’s love of colour is seen throughout the home – in the living room Martin’s old sofas have been given a new lease of life in yellow.