lifestyle

Dad transforms two-bed house in a year and makes £175k profit


The transformed house, and centre, Alex with his daughter (Picture: Jam Press)

Alex Dodman and partner Sarah bought their two-bed home in July 2017 for £250,000 but thanks to their hard work, they now have a stylish four bed property.

The couple spent £100,000 on the work but the house is now worth £525,000 making them a profit of £175,000

It’s been a long road for Alex and Sarah, 35, and daughter Allie, four and son Eddie, one, but they said their house in Saffron Walden, Essex is now a great place to lice.

‘Originally our home had two bedrooms but we extended and converted it so that it now has four bedrooms,’ Alex said.

‘We started renovating it straight away as it was a complete wreck.

Alex worked through all sorts of weather (Picture: Jam Press)
The finished kitchen, which Alex fitted himself (Picture: Jam Press)

‘We had to live in a rented flat for four months until we could get the property to a liveable condition as we completely gutted it and ripped everything out, including the plumbing and electrics.’

Alex then built a double extension and began knocking down the walls upstairs while this was being built.

Alex added an extension (Picture: Jam Press)
Daughter Allie’s room (Picture: Jam Press)

He said: ‘Then we got all of the other main things done such as laying new plumbing all around the house and getting the electrics fitted, while there was no plaster or ceiling plaster on, so that it was easier to get all these done.

‘Once all the new plumbing and electrics were done and the extension shell was built, we got all the rooms plastered so that we could start decorating them.

The master bedroom (Picture: Jam Press)
They even added a gym (Picture: Jam Press)
The outdoor pizza oven (Picture: Jam Press)

‘The first room I got finished was the main bedroom upstairs and as this had an en suite bathroom, we were able to move out of our rented flat and basically just live in that bedroom and cook with a microwave in there.’

Alex took time off work to fit the downstairs kitchen and the family had to live in the finished bedroom for that time.

Alex and Allie (Picture: Jam Press)

Doing the work himself saved the couple around £3,500.

He said: ‘It was a case of slowly working around the other rooms in the house getting them decorated and carpeted so we could eventually live in all the rooms.

Alex tried to do as much as he could himself (Picture: Jam Press)

‘After spending quite a lot on the kitchen itself I thought the company might give me a decent price on fitting it but that was the best quote they could give me.

‘So I first had to get the room painted and then insulate it and lay flooring.

The living room with brick fireplace (Picture: Jam Press)

‘I had an electrician come in and get all the wiring in place for where I wanted things to go.

‘Then a plumber came in to get the gas pipe in the middle of the room for where I was going to fit the hob and also get the water pipes laid to where I was going to have the sink and dishwasher.

It took a year to complete the work (Picture: Jam Press)

‘Once this was done and I had laid the floor, I was ready to fit the kitchen.

‘But the only other thing I had to go on was a 3D drawing that came with what it was supposed to look like once it was fitted so I had a general idea of where everything had to go.’

Incredibly, Alex managed to put the kitchen together in just two and a half weeks.

The bathroom (Picture: Jam Press)

He said: ‘I just took my time putting everything together and slotting it all into place.

‘But the hardest part was having to cut the Minerva worktops as I had absolutely zero experience in cutting exact holes neatly for the countersunk sinks and also a hole that the hob could slot into.

‘I tried to get a quote for a worktop specialist to cut these three holes but the best price they could give me was £600.

Building the extension (Picture: Jam Press)

‘It took me more than an hour to cut out each hole myself but as I did it really slowly and took my time it was worth the effort to save the money.’

He then managed to do the rest of the home in just one year, spending a total of £100,000 – and even found the time to build a gym at the bottom of his garden.

Thanks to Alex’s epic transformation, the family’s home has since been valued at £525,000.

But the couple won’t be stopping there and still have plans to add extra bits to the house, including a swimming pool.

Alex added: ‘Without a doubt, my favourite part of the house is the kitchen which opens up into the patio and the pizza oven.

‘Although it might soon be the top of the garden once I’ve finished building the swimming pool.’

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