ONE of the most interesting and enjoyable aspects of doing home reviews is meeting owners who’ve transformed their homes into something special.
There’s pride and excitement in their voices as they talk about the challenges and achievements along the way, while the house becomes more than just a roof over some walls: it becomes a history of the families that lived there, as well as the city itself.
The home-maker at 18 Farnley Street paints a blunt picture of what greeted them when they walked through the door in 2003.
“It had been completely stripped of all its character; and the only thing left was the ceiling height and the floorboards,” she says, noting the fence-to-fence concrete in the backyard was particularly challenging.
They spent the first few years de-Mediterraneanising the Mt Lawley abode, and trying to recapture the feel when it was first built as a worker’s cottage in 1912.
The last of the renos weren’t that long ago, when the columns that held up the nice, wide verandah that wraps around the front of the house were replaced with more subtle timber posts.
Then in 2010 they knocked down the back half of the home and added a very sensitive extension, which is now a beautiful, modern kitchen, dining and lounge area that flows seamlessly out to a covered, decked alfresco.
Mercifully the concrete has been replaced with a cute, low-maintenance garden complete with a little strip of lawn.
It’s a great place for entertaining, and they’ve regularly hosted all 60 of the offspring, cousins, uncles, aunts, grandkids and associated pets without trouble.
“We wanted to create something that would feel like it’s welcoming,” she says.
That’s been achieved in spades: from the front door, it’s simple and elegant, and with four bedrooms and two bathrooms, would suit either a big family or grandparents who like to have the grandkids over for sleep-overs.
For the professional family, the garage out the back has been converted into a home office, complete with all the appropriate wiring; though it could easily be a teen’s retreat or a gym.
It’s also in an excellent location: just off Lord Street, Farnley is a picturesque avenue of leafy trees just a moment’s drive from central Mt Lawley or Maylands.
by STEVE GRANT
18 Farnley Street, Mt Lawley
Expressions of Interest
Closing Tuesday December 12
0478 927 017
0405 812 273
Acton Mt Lawley