I wanted to use this post as more of an introduction. It’s been a while, and so much has gone on that when I find myself sitting down to begin a blog, I’m actually quite daunted on where to start. It hasn’t really been a very easy journey, and both my boyfriend and I have found it an incredibly difficult experience. This blog is partially my diary, but also my positive documentation of the whirlwind journey that most people would be daunted at experiencing at our age. I have tried to promise myself that it is all worth it in the end, and what better way to realise that by sharing the journey right from start to finish.
12th September 2012
This was the day we exchanged and completed ready to move into our new 4 bedroom (eek!) Victorian house in South London. It was most certainly a doer upper, and after a week of technically being homeless (due to having to complete on our previous property) we were itching to move in.
The whole sale and purchase timeline that we experienced in the run up to actually moving in was incredibly stressful and long-winded, as a lot of moves on the property ladder can be, so moving in felt like a breath of fresh air after almost a year of pestering solicitors and buyers/sellers. We could finally unpack, we could finally call it our own and begin collecting ideas and memories.
So to give you a bit of a lowdown, we originally owned a 2 up 2 down Victorian terraced property in Sutton – post to follow. We refurbished that house with the help of my Dad, and after buying it in the middle of a recession, we soon realised we were in a really good position to move and make a decent amount of money to be able to upsize as the property market began to recover again without suffering too much financially. We also wanted to move somewhere a little more quiet as our previous road wasn’t.
We were looking to buy & sell when others were dubious about doing so, so there wasn’t very much available on the market at the time, especially sought after period properties (ours is circa. 1870 – 1879 according to the surveyor), whatever condition they may be in. We came across our most loved and hated number 13, and after making a few cheeky offers we finally had a price accepted. We knew it needed work, but we didn’t anticipate quite how much. On the surface it looked great, but until you tear out every crevice and lift every floorboard you never really know what you are letting yourself in for. They say love is blind right?
The beauty of buying this place was that it was owned by an old lady who had lived there with her parents her whole life. They were DIY shy, and unfortunately the house had never really had any proper maintenance at all, except for being re roofed. Some people might think where is the beauty in that? But in all honesty, we are one of the few houses down our road with original coving and ceiling roses. We even had original Bakelite switches and sockets! So that’s where the beauty lies, in the originality which hadn’t even had the chance to be stripped away by someone who liked ‘modern interiors’ – There’s nothing wrong with modern, but I think it’s a crime to force that style on a property where so much emphasis has been placed on ornate detail.
Entering through the original front door, one can be met with the (also) original curved staircase, along the hallway on the right are 2 living rooms, and a huge storage cupboard which was later turned into a downstairs toilet. We have a cellar with an entrance under the stairs, and the back dining room led onto the garden and kitchen. There are chimney breasts everywhere, and we even found the old butlers bell rig up in the loft. Someone at one point had a maid, where the hell can I get one of those on an Ad-Ops salary?! Upstairs has a large hallway, with 4 bedrooms all big enough to fit a double bed. One bedroom links to the master bedroom. There was a separate WC next to the bathroom. The loft is fucking huge. The front garden has enough room for 2 cars, and the back garden was a frustratingly overgrown forest with so much potential to be a bee magnet, but was just neglected for too long.
So there you have it, the house that started it all, the ups and downs, trials and tribulations, and most of all the place that we have done our utmost to call home for 3 years. It’s now coming together and I’m looking forward to reminiscing on the past chapter whilst shaping a new one. The pictures are courtesy of RightMove, and I will share more detailed ones as time goes on – watch this space.
Thanks very much for reading, and if you are here because you are doing the same, I’d love to hear about your journey too!