The latest project

Just thought I would share my latest project. This house just settled on Monday. It is a 'renovators delight'. As you will see from the pictures (if I can work out how to post them) it has been badly vandalised. What you can't see is that it has termite damage as well & minor fire damage in one room.

Of course we have already found some lovely little extras that weren't planned, like the burst plumbing under the house. We have no water until we fix that, so must rush home if needing the use of the toilet.

It overlooks the bush & at dusk you can see kangaroos nearby. The yard was also severly overgrown (the weeds, or should I say small trees are taller than I, but I am very short).
Skater, can you share any more info with us ?

Suburb, number of bedroom/ bathrooms, price, etc.

This way others can get an idea of what your project is all about. ;)
Hi, I have been trying in vein to get my photos to load. It seems they are way too large & it won't let me. I may have to wait till tomorrow & get hubby to fiddle about with them.

This is in Western Sydney, a 4 bedroom, 1 bathroom ex-housing commission place. They were in the process of renovating when they found the white ants. Needless to say the little vandals destroyed everything except the new bath & tiles in the bathroom.

They had put a sizable hole in the paling fence at the rear of the place. We erected a new fence straight away as well as locks on the side gates. There are a large amount of teenagers in the area with nothing to do, so it is fare game to wreck vacant homes. In the next street there is one in much worse condition that they burnt out.

The sad thing is that there is another large group of kids that range in age from 9 to 4 years that all hang out together as well - apprentice vandals if you like - & I caught them trying to damage stuff. Well after talking to them, the next day they all turned up to help clean the stuff out. They are mainly nice kids, but the guy next door says that most of the parents are drug users & they don't care what the kids are doing so long as they are out of their hair. Obviously these kids are going to become a problem in the future as most of them don't know right from wrong.
Sounds like a nice suburb :p

But i bet you also picked it up for a song considering it's condition & location.
All the best with a challenging project.
skater said:
And more....
Oh my god! :) You guys must have boundless energy!

Skater, please take lots of photos along the way and post here, I for one am going to be glued to your progress on this one!
And if it's not to intrusive to ask, it'd be interesting to get a feel for your reno budget split into rooms and timescales and then actual time & cash spent...and before & after photos of each rooms.
And getting real personal, is it out of the question to ask what you paid for this one and what your estimated value is at the end of your project?

I'll second Duncan's post in saying you guys DO have boundless energy :eek: and I'll also be watching this thread with keen interest to see your progress.

And while I'm at it I'll second Keith's request for as many pics and as much info as you feel you want to give. :p

All the best with it :)
Love the house, great find. Reminds me of a house I bought once, so many active ants that they shared the kitchen cupboards along with pots and pans. I discoved that after they eat the soft timber first, and the other timber is too hard, they will eat the gyprock. The previous owner had the house since new and never did anything to stop them. He bought it for $23k in 1973, re-financed twice and owned $70k when I bought it from him for $85k in 1999. He then spend that on the horses. I got a DA for a duplex and sold it for double. In hindsight, I made the bigger mistake by selling :mad:
I would really like to hear how this one goes together! I take it you are going to renovate but my guess is that the property may never get the yield or capital gains in that suburb. How do you plan to do it? Good luck and I sincerely hope all goes well. White ants are really not that much of a problem once you know they are there. Do they sell a chemical to elininate the vandals?
Hi Skater

Also very interested in your figures on this one.
You must be very brave taking on such a project.

I'd assume you would want to be in and out of there asap, since security is obviously an issue.

Good luck


Adrian See
OK it's getting late and I am lost for words after seeing the pics :eek:

I definitely believe you deserve an award for bravery. GOOD LUCK with this project. I look forward to seeing some updates as you go along.

Perhaps you can challenge the Reno Kings after this ?
Just back after a 12 hour day renovating. We have 2 that we are doing at the moment. I didn't take before photos of the first & its nearly finished now. Mind you it was nowhere near as bad as this one. Just filthy and a huge rubbish tip in the back yard.

We must be crazy. We bought the first one & it settled on a Monday, then the following Saturday we bought this one.

So far this weekend we have put up a fence, cleaned all the gyprock out of the place, sanded the floors in the first one, then removed all the carpet & tiles from second ones' lounge/dining & kitchen ready to sand tomorrow.

Now I know that sanding the floors should be done last, but since I have the sander for the entire weekend for the price of one day, I thought it would be great not to have to hire the thing twice.

During the boom we would see houses like this one all the time go to auction & comment on the stupid prices that people were paying. Quite often they would sell for a similar price as a home in not too bad condition. Usually from first home owners thinking they were getting a bargain. This one, however, was about $110k less than a similar property in fair condition.

While I am generally a buy & hold type, this one is purely a trade. With the yields being as low as they are at the moment I don't want to hold onto something that is going to be largely negatively geared, especially when I don't believe there will be much in the way of capital growth for the next few years.
Have had a great day today. The plumbing problem under the house was on the to do list for the day. After digging in the slush for a considerable time, hubby discovered the reason we have no water. Someone removed all the copper pipes from under the house. A rather expensive trip to the plumbing supplies later & we nearly have water again.

The next little surprise was in one of the bedrooms when we discovered a couple of live white ants. How can they survive? They were sprayed before the auction - about 6 weeks ago. There doesn't appear to be many, but a visit from the friendly pest person is next on the agenda.

Hoping tomorrow is a better day.
skater said:
How can they survive? They were sprayed before the auction - about 6 weeks ago.

Well, the poisons they use in this day and age are about effective as a weak tea.. they are incredibly diluted now due to concerns over health of the environment and kiddies..
You guys are fantastic - thanks for posting the info. The pictures really do tell a thousand words (just like Duncs eviction ones).

The value in these posts for me is that if I come across a ppty like this and it is really cheap it won't be so daunting to take it on - because I know that someone has already done this before so it is possible - the project just requires a bit of vision.

Good on you and keep us posted.