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Wednesday, 18 April 2012

My town part II...the house

I have been looking at real estate in the city again
so I can be closer to my children.

For around $400,000
I can get a rundown fibro in an area that would be,
in time taken to drive through traffic,
almost as far away as I am now.
It would require a massive renovation
and would then be over priced for the neighbourhood.

Or, I can get a studio apartment in an old hotel
that has been turned into private studio accommodation,
but it would be reasonably close to the kids.

Third choice is moving to the outer area where I could possibly find
an aged two bedroom unit or townhouse…again needing massive renovations.

So what would I be leaving to move to one of these delights?

A house that we fell in love with the minute we walked through the front door,

a large house for two people
but we do have five children and lots of grandchildren
and there was room for all,
well almost!

It has a history that is romantic and fascinating
and for all those 16 years it has watched over us
and embraced us as a family.
It is one of those magic houses
that is a naturally warm and welcoming home

It stands on ½ an acre of,
admittedly, dreadfully overgrown garden
and is 45 squares of double brick Victoriana with 8’ verandahs all round.
Inside, the 14’ ceilings of beautifully patterned Wunderlich metal

give the large rooms a feeling of cosiness as the proportions are beautiful
Most of the rooms run off the 68’ x 6’ hallway
complete with exquisite stained glass doors at either end.

The many marble and timber Victorian fireplaces
are in almost perfect original condition..
Now I am being honest when I say that the kitchens and bathrooms
could do with a rebuild,
but somehow these just fit with the house and we never felt the need to improve.

There are 14 rooms
if you count the outside loo with its black and white tiles and marble step
and the studio that in one of its lives
saw the birth of hundreds of babies that now live all round Australia.
(I have met them in Brisbane and Hobart!!!)

This is all far too big for me
and it is beginning to crumble around the edges
as I can no longer give it the care it deserves
but the asking price is under $400,000!!

How can that compare with City prices?!!!!! 


  1. What a stunning home! I'd love to see it in person and wander through that overgrown garden. It looks divine! None of the other accommodations compare :)

    1. You are welcome any time Sarah!
      They don't but they would be more practical!

  2. It is a lovely home, so I hve some questions:

    1) are you really ready to leave it?

    2) how quickly can you sell it?

    3) is there rental property available that you could sell and then rent until you find something you like better?

    4) are the measurements in the apartment meters? That porch would certainly be a huge selling point for me, but it's a huge downsizing for you.

    It's a very difficult decision. Hope you can take some time and not have to rush into something. good luck

    oh, and 5) why is this perfect stranger sticking her nose into my business!

    1. Webb,
      No I am not really ready to leave it but I must as I cannot afford the upkeep and it will start to deteriorate quickly
      It has been on the market for 11 months and not one inspection yet!!!!!!
      I can move in with family, but, I have found the place I want to buy (not better, just smaller and different!) so I just really, really need to find a buyer for this soon and so I have reduced the price!!!!!
      Measuremennt are feet I still don't understand metres our squares are 10' x 10' so 45 of those!!!!
      and this perfet stranger has been invited into my life via this blog!!!!!
      I do enjoy the questions makes me really think about the answers!!!

  3. Thanks for the fabulous tour, Jules - that was very generous of you to share it with us. No wonder you're in love with it - those pressed metal ceilings have me swooning, just for starters! I wish you only the best in working it through. It's certainly not a decision you'll be taking lightly, I can see. J x

  4. Dearest Jules,

    This is quite emotional and therefore NEVER easy to deal with. I too will once have to deal with this decision but for as long as possible because of the many fond memories, the love shared for decades (and still) I will hold on to it till my last breath. For the upkeep you can hire people and would that cost more than the loss if you would move to the city? The real estate market is down world wide so selling is not a favorable thing right now. But it's up to you of course. Moving closer to the children, at least here in the USA, has proven to some of our friends wrong as the children moved due to promotion or whatever. Than you're stuck in a foreign area without roots...
    Love to you and lots of strength!

  5. Mariette, alas I am now on a very limited income (not quite how we planned it but the world intervened and our money disappeared!!!)
    so paying for the upkeep is not something I can do and whilst I want to move nearer the children I am very aware they can move on as we
    are a family of gypsies but where I plan to go is not far from here so I can keep in touch with friends and also a town where I have other family
    and friends! Apart from that the house I have found and really, really want is just perfect and so like a place we used to live in that it
    will be like going home!!!!! I always look forward to your comments. J

  6. Oh your house is beautiful Jules and I can see your dilemma completely. I think if you move to something needing a little work it will keep you occupied and also you can put your 'stamp' on it. And I realise you do have to move but it will be difficult. Is anything selling around you or is everything slow? What advice does your estate agent give? And you'll have to have a massive garage sale !! ;-0
    Sarah x

    1. MASSIVE!!!!!!
      The cheaper pric ranges are selling quite well and when the gold mine opens this range will go quickly I just can't wait that long!!!!!
      I've found the house just hope it doesn't sell to someone else before I am ready and yes it needs some work but nothing major as bathroom and kitchen are almost what I would have done!! In 11 months I have heard from the RE agent once!! No help at all!!

  7. what a gorgeous home jules!!must be tough considering leaving it, but the right thing usually presents itself at the right time. xx

    1. Jules it stresses me more than its worth and yes it is tough to leave but if I don't I can see myself living in one room whilst the rest fall down round me and I will be known as that strange woman with all her dogs and the kids will dare each other to run up and ring the doorbell!!!!!!!!!

  8. This post strikes such a chord with me. Since my husband was so ill last year I have looked at our house and property with new eyes. He is unable to do upkeep any longer, so after our daughter's wedding next month we will start to do the things we need to do in order to sell.
    Your home is beautiful, but wherever you go, I am sure you make a beautiful home. Good luck with the sale!

  9. I never much thought about the upkeep before because Top just loved his fiddling as he called it and everything was done!
    In the garden we constantly fought over what I called his burnt earth policy each Autumn as he cut everything back to its bare bones...now I know why and would cheerfully cut everything back to the ground,,,literally!!!!!!

  10. That yellow entry is STUNNING! And the whole house is lovely. What a wrenching decision.

    1. It will be sad to leave it and no doubt I will have a yellow hall again as it was Top's favourite and we've had a few but who needs 12 rooms!!!!!

  11. I'm glad to see The House given it's very own blog post Jules, it deserves it. Tell the Agent to rejig his advertising, something along the lines of 'Buy the famous Blog House & make it your own.'
    Millie xx

    1. Bless you! I am about to give it to another agent as well. They are pushing me to auction but as our success rate here for auctions is 1% I think that may well be a waste of money!!!!!!!

  12. JulesI just read the comment above - I am going to be bold and say don't auction - you are right - a waste of money and you still won't have a sale ... we had to sell once for compelling reasons and we just dropped the price by $5k every three weeks till it sold .... easy to say a bit painful to do :) good luck le xox


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