This episode, “Sight Unseen” finds us back in Durham where Hillary and David are working with a young couple who just had to live in one of the trendier downtown neighborhoods. As the market is tight in this area, the couple bid sight unseen to buy their home and now regret it!
Fortunately, the house appears to be less than 20 years old, is built on a crawl space and the yard has a lot of potential but unfortunately, the floor plan is a mess and the house needs a complete cosmetic makeover.
As is usually the case, the couple can’t agree on the future of their home. She likes it and feels it can be all they need it to be and he thinks it’s a disaster. But both agree that the location is exactly what they need and from what we can tell, they actually got a pretty good deal on the home despite its short comings.
When we catch up with Hillary and David, we find that the house is currently worth $195k, they have a home purchase budget of $225k and Hillary has a $40k rehab budget…these are thin numbers if you’re expecting big change.
Hillary finds that her plans are limited by the location of the fireplace and the HVAC return but she cleverly made plans to use what little floor space she has to greatly improve the usefulness and flow of the home. Even though her budget took a hit due to some minor foundation issues, she delivered here.
Poor David discovered quickly that the couple have probably one of the most affordable homes in the neighborhood, forcing him to retreat to the suburbs to hit as many points on the couple’s checklist as possible. In the end, he wound up with a typical suburban home that offers plenty of living space but not much in the way of style or convenience.
In the end, Hillary scores a win here! Her sense of style and here keen eye for using every square inch of the homes available floor space coupled with the homes overall solid condition made all the difference.
What struck us is Hillary’s use of square footage. She expanded the kitchen by exchanging a fairly tall window for a shorter one which gave her the wall space needed to extend the countertop…this isn’t too hard to do on a house with lap siding but a brick home would be a lot more work. Instead of buying new cabinets, the crew refinished the old ones and made their own open shelving over the extended counter-top. Hillary then reused the window they removed from the kitchen and installed it in the master bedroom for added bling that took this job over the top. The Jack and Jill bathroom modification for the master bath created much need space in an area where there was none. These are the habits of a true professional and one reason we really encourage you to watch this show on a regular basis.
Nice job Hillary!