News: Couple Turns Sad Cottage into $3.62mil Dollar Home

Nov 7, 2017

A small fisherman’s cottage on Sydney’s northern beach that was bought for AU$960,000 has been transformed into an upscale abode which was recently sold for a whopping AU$3.22 million.

In 2012, landscape designer and stock trader Dave Limburg struggled to persuade her wife Michelle Galletti to buy the property sited on a rectangular strip of land measuring 264 sq m.

The tiny one-storey cottage failed to attract a buyer in an auction and remained on the market for months. Even Galletti’s father, who is a veteran property agent, thought it was a bad deal.

But now, the married couple with two children are grateful that they jumped on the opportunity to purchase the property in Charles Street and redevelop it, otherwise they wouldn’t have increased their investment by over three-fold.

In fact, the two-storey Hamptons-style home with four bedrooms and three bathrooms attracted many buyers who wanted to live just a stone’s throw away from Freshwater Beach.

“We feel so lucky but we also learned that it’s about taking a risk — an educated risk,” said Galletti.

So how did the pair overcome the plot’s limited size? They maximised the use of the land by building right up to the property’s boundary. To make it clutter-free and appear more spacious, they erected a pitched roof on the second floor as well as installed bespoke cabinets and floor-level windows. They were also able to build a pool in their “large” garden.

“I’ve always had this dream of having an old Queenslander and we knew we wanted a lovely tropical garden,” noted Galletti, who works for Cunninghams Real Estate. “As a real estate agent I know the bedrooms have to be a good size and you always have to consider the resale factor.”

While the couple have had many of ideas on their dream home, they were pleased that Xu Kha from Scope Architects quickly understood what they wanted. Subsequently, the redevelopment of their house took just nine months to complete, after receiving a complying development certificate, which eliminated the need for a time-consuming development approval.

“I wanted a house where I could be in the kitchen but I could also see the kids at the same time. With the doors out to the deck we get the gorgeous ocean breeze,” added Galletti, who jointly runs Peaceful Landscapes with her husband.

With their hard-earned profit, the couple was able to buy a new home along the same street with twice the land area, which they intend to redevelop into another stunning dwelling.

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Shaiful Safar
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