Sweet Sorrento Move

* Quirky 1980s home brought into the 21st century

* Clever lowering of entire living area to match existing sunken lounge

* Seamless integration of kitchen, dining and outdoor pool area to optimise family functionality and liveability

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Details of the full transformation

Suburb: Sorrento

Background: With three kids under the age of seven, Ben and Rebecca were searching for an established family home they could love at first sight. However, finding the perfect ready-made match was proving difficult. When they stumbled upon a quirky 1980s home in Sorrento, their plans took an unexpected turn. While the home was a little dated thanks to passé eighties features such as arched doorways, curved stairs and an awkward sunken lounge, the previous owners had looked after it well, leaving it in excellent condition. After falling in love with the location, Ben and Rebecca could see the potential to reimagine the home as something special. So they purchased the home in 2017 and prepared to embark on a journey of transformation.

Need: With a young energetic family in tow, the couple needed their home to work seamlessly for playtime and busy family life. Ben and Rebecca’s number one objective was to modernise the home by opening up the living spaces and enhancing functionality, including a non-negotiable – being able to watch the kids play outside while preparing a meal. Creating a seamless flow between the kitchen, breakfast bar, living area and alfresco was high on the agenda, as was the addition of storage to keep toys out of sight and easy garage access for day-to-day living. 

Dale Alcock Home Improvement reimagined the home with a beautiful transformation befitting of the family’s dream location. The masterstroke was lowering the entire living area to match the level of the sunken lounge, creating one massive space that brings everything together. The other advantage of lowering the living area was creating 32 course ceilings, giving an extra feeling of space and volume. The previous 28 course ceilings would have made the room feel very tight. Large slider doors were added to the six-metre rear wall, allowing the couple to completely open up the view into their backyard and pool area. The new layout also included a dedicated play zone for the kids, as well as a space optimising walk-in linen cupboard. The double carport was enclosed and connected to the house, creating more storage while enabling the team to create a hallway from the garage into the house and a handy drop zone area for life on the go.

To achieve a fresh, modern design, the old and dated bar, curved stairs and most of the ugly columns were removed. However, the couple’s decision to embrace and match the exposed external face brick proved an inspired idea, bringing the home into 2018 while toasting its original eighties charm.

The entire transformation took just over four months; an impressive turnaround considering the project spanned the Christmas and New Year period. After moving out in October 2017, Ben and Rebecca returned the following February to begin the first chapter of life at their family’s forever home.

<DAHI - Sorrento - After DAHI - Sorrento - After

Why Dale Alcock Home Improvement?
"We ideally looked to buy established and only do minor upgrades. The way it worked out, this was the best option for us. Our renovation budget was $200k, and we think we’ve probably instantly added around $125k. But we knew we were never going to retrieve all of our money short term - this will be a 20-year house for us. That meant a long-term approach to design and build quality was of the most importance. The communication with DAHI was always clear and efficient, and I have no concerns about the after build service we will receive.”

"Many of our friends have done bits at a time to their homes and it rarely works out. Construction issues are often left unfixed due to a ‘no care’ factor, while some builders even go out of business. We know friends who to this day have not been able to fix a major leak in their home for this reason. Our advice would be to get your plans right from the get go, and choose a quality builder.”


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