A COUPLE bought “the worst house on the prettiest street” and turned it into their dream home with the help of YouTube videos.
First-time buyers Ellen, 25, and Jack purchased the derelict Stockport property after seeing the potential in the desolate former rental property.
The couple began looking for property soon after lockdown and were determined to find a place to make their own mark.
Speaking to the Manchester Evening News, Ellen said: “Because there are only two of us we were only looking for a two bedroom terraced house.
“We decided we wanted a doer upper and something that we could add value to.
“I really like traditional features so buying an older home was a big deal for me.
“We really wanted a project that we could familiarize ourselves with.
Ellen said the couple only looked at about five or six houses because they were “pretty strict” about what they wanted.
She said: “We did two weeks of viewings, but we saw this house very early on in the search and we just have a really good feeling about it.”
The 1980s property in Cheadle had been a rental property for at least 30 years and was “very basic” with some “damp and mold problems”.
The couple described the property as “the worst house on the prettiest street” but immediately saw the potential to make it their dream home.
They bought the twin-bed terrace for £200,000, which was under the asking price and also under the couple’s budget, and moved into the property in March 2021.
Ellen said the biggest transformation has taken place in the kitchen, tearing down a load-bearing wall and making it open plan.
Over the next two years, the couple worked their way through the other rooms of the house using DIY videos on YouTube.
Ellen said: Doing it ourselves definitely helped us keep costs down.
“For example, the fireplaces needed to be tiled and I tried hiring a tiler and it was just so expensive on top of the cost of the tiles.
“So I just watched YouTube videos and learned how to do it myself.”
The thrifty couple also replaced all the outlets in the house themselves, installed new lights, and stripped, painted, and paneled everything.
The only thing they invited people in for was the kitchen and bathroom.
The interior style of the house is ‘fun’ and ‘colorful’ and Ellen was inspired by Victorian colors and designs by William Morris.
The transformation took two years, and she says they’re “thrilled” with the results and “receive so many compliments.”
Ellen and Jack saved up to buy their first house by living with their parents, which Ellen says has played a “massive” role in helping them get a foot on the ladder.
Giving advice to first-time buyers, she said: “I think you need to set really realistic goals, and I’ve always found that the best way to save is to put money in as soon as the paycheck hits your bank, and your savings that day.”
“We both also had help buying ISAs which I would recommend to anyone. We paid the maximum amount into it every month for at least three years.”
She also recommends that anyone thinking about a renovation use a “mood board” of color, carpet, and fabric samples for each room.