Entering the Sydney, Inner West housing market is no small feat. It isn’t so much finding the house you love, rather finding the house you can afford in the place you want to live. After a very long search over a number of years we are in! and have learnt a few things already as we start our renovation on our sturdy, soon to be beautiful (the eternal optimist) new home.
The first service you need to set up after electricity is the internet, Without marvellous Netflix there is a very good chance we would have lost/accidentally maimed/gone berserk at our 3 kids. The incredible thing with our girls is we can throw a mattress anywhere in the world in any condition and they will happily watch a movie for hours. Awesome, a little disturbing? yes, but awesome all the same.
Another fabulous thing about kids is they love to help, (With the bonus being, they can only ever be bothered helping for 10 minutes max) Our girls were great little renovators, they had a ball, were well chuffed with the results and cleaned up reasonably well too.
Finally, I would recommend stock piling alcohol, the amount of times beautiful thoughtful friends and family took our children away from the chaos has been incredible, they all deserve many bottles of child recovery liquor.
Through heated discussions, my husband and I have finally come to an agreement. One regular coffee every alternate day for ongoing tradies is acceptable, sugar should always be provided and biscuits help with change of plan requests. never provide large lattes to removal people mid move. NEVER. Consider yourself warned.
Also, please be warned that tradies treat all job sites as job sites. Unless you are showered and dressed before 7.30am, there is every chance the whole team will see you in your knickers as you dash to your makeshift bedroom.
Let it go
Parts of the house You thought so awful you couldn’t bare it at time of purchase become increasingly acceptable the more time you are homeless/out of pocket… Unless it’s yellow textured glass. I’m not sure that one will ever make a come back (Check out the excellent pattern explosion here!)
Windows you wished to change immediately become far too expensive to trump paying for the plumbing, and keeping the house clean with sanding going on is literally impossible, it gets EVERYWHERE. Just get used to walking around looking frighteningly pale. Fair to say we have eaten a lot of takeaways lately.
While letting go helps on many levels, you should always back your intuition. If you aren’t happy with the paint colour you have chosen. Change it. Immediately. The price of a new tin is not worth staring at the wrong colour for eternity, and eternity it will feel like, as a wall repaint will find itself way waaaayyyy down on the list of priorities. Look at it this way, you will very soon know half the staff at Bunnings by name anyway, so you may as well have an ongoing joke about that magenta nightmare whenever you pass the painting isle as you head down to plumbing.
Wonderful phone cameras
Your mobile photo album is no longer predominantly this…
but now this… because a photo is so much more reliable than a small ripped bit of loose wallpaper with a paint brand illegibly scrawled on it.
Smile and wave
Currently we are the neighbours no one likes, our tools are noisey, and all our old armchairs we bought in the days we imagined ourselves as restorers are sitting on the front porch like some kind of sad uni flat because the floors are still hardening and there isn’t anywhere else to put them. I am sure they are wondering how we can still be living out of suitcases when we have been there everyday for the past month. My approach is to look very busy and in control and off to a very important meeting giving no inkling of the nightmare inside, then I hide in my car to watch something awesome and educational on Facebook
Old houses don’t tend to be very warm, Old houses without heating are cold and old houses with a dodgy power board that trips the fuse every time you turn a column heater on are really very cold indeed. Currently this home’s inhabitants are much like this home, more functional than fashionable.
Internet Surfing Joy
You at least can now become a master of pinterest and avid follower of renovation blogs. Check out this beauty line up of Australian Renovation blogs. Sure it can get depressing when your house couldn’t replicate any one of the gorgeous houses even if you were money bags, but hopefully it will inspire too!