ERIN Lynch and Patrick Fortuna had to “beg, borrow and steal” to buy their first home together — and that was before the real work began.
Two weeks without a bathroom, three months of living on Youfoodz and Lite n’ Easy, and sacrificing every weekend for a year as they restored their humble abode to its former glory.
“People would say; ‘why would you do that?’, but this is what you have to do to own a house,” Miss Lynch said.
“This is the smashed avo everyone talks about.”
The young couple bought the house at 10 Burn St, Camp Hill, in 2017 and set about renovating it straight away.
They started with the two most challenging rooms first — the kitchen and bathroom — and lived in the house through the entire renovation.
“When we first moved in, it was like ‘glamping’,” Miss Lynch said.
“We didn’t have a bathroom for two weeks, which was manageable.
“We showered at work and the gym. It was a good incentive to get off our butts and go to the gym!
“We literally had a microwave oven and fridge and that was our kitchen.”
The couple then set about painting the interior and exterior of the house and repairing, sealing and painting the roof, which was in poor condition.
They knocked down three walls to reconfigure the inside slightly, turning the dining room into a third bedroom and making the kitchen and living area open plan.
Most of the timber floorboards also had to be replaced.
The last piece of the puzzle was replacing the rotting back deck with a brand new, bigger one.
“It was pretty bad,” Miss Lynch said.
“The agent said; ‘I’m going to open the door, but don’t walk on (the deck) because it’s not structurally safe.”
The end result is a three-bedroom house on a 506 sqm block with modern touches, a cool grey and white colour palette, and restored original features such as casement windows and intricate cornicing.
Miss Lynch said the hardest part was sticking to their budget.
“You can go crazy and want everything, but it was about trying to understand what we needed and knowing the costs upfront,” Miss Lynch said.
“We don’t have built-in wardrobes, but that wasn’t the biggest priority for us.
“The priority was bigger rooms and more space.”
Miss Lynch said friends who had initially doubted them were now impressed with their project.
“We’re really proud of ourselves and what we’ve done,” she said.
“We’ve got that beautiful home in a beautiful suburb — and we’ve done it on two average wages.”
The property is being marketed by Michael Bacon and Simon Caulfield of Place – Kangaroo Point and is scheduled for auction on June 5.
RENO FACT CHECK
Time taken: 12 months
Total spend: $120,000