Couple transform dull house into luxurious dream home on a £25,000 budget

We love a house renovation, and this one’s pretty glorious.

In December 2019, Becca Larkin, 26, and her partner Jordan Sutton, 27, bought an outdated, run-down two-bedroom property in East Sussex for £280,000.

They got straight to work on giving the bungalow a full makeover, doing the majority of the work themselves while continuing to work full-time jobs – Becca as a digital communications manager and Jordan as a carpenter.

Sticking to a budget of £25,000, the couple managed to completely transform the space, taking it from dull to dreamy.

The project started with Becca and Jordan completely stripping the property, so they could start with as close to a blank canvas as possible.

First, Jordan knocked down the wall between the kitchen and lounge to create an open-plan layout, then it was time to re-plaster all the rooms, renew the heating, chase all new pipework into the solid floor, and update the electrics.

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In the bedrooms, they added new skirting and coving, as well as new carpets, then did a fresh paint job – costing them £1,000 in total.

Jordan then fitted the kitchen with new appliances, a snazzy kitchen island, and laminate flooring, which came to a further £9,000.

The pair also did up their garden, which cost £3,000, the en-suite for £2,500, and the main bathroom, which isn’t yet complete.

So far, the renovation has cost them £25,000, with money saved by Jordan and Becca doing the bulk of the DIY work themselves, finding time where they could during evenings and weekends.

It was a lot of hard graft, but the couple are thrilled with the results so far.

‘We loved the whole process,’ said Becca. ‘I’m not really a get your hands dirty kind of girl but I enjoyed it so much more than I expected.

‘I would say the most enjoyable part was knocking down the wall between the lounge and the kitchen and seeing the open space.

‘I loved the whole process and especially enjoy looking back at the before pictures now and seeing the difference.

‘The most challenging part was probably the fact we did most of the renovating during the pandemic.

‘We had to wait quite a long time for supplies and there was a huge shortage of plaster!

‘Also, we had to wait months and months for our bed and sofa. We sat and slept on a blow-up sofa for a long time!

‘This also meant we had to do everything just Jordan and I, as it was during the first lockdown when guidelines were the strictest.’

The couple are now looking forward to continuing their renovation efforts, and hosting a BBQ party in the garden once lockdown restrictions ease.

Along with sharing the DIY process on Instagram, the couple have shared their advice to others considering a property makeover.

Becca said: ‘My first tip would be to pull together a budget spreadsheet before you commit to a full renovation.

‘If you can pull together some rough costs for labour, materials and so on, this will give you a guide on the type of renovation you can afford.

‘All the little things add up. I didn’t realise how expensive taps, toilets and taps are!

‘I would also suggest following renovation accounts on Instagram.

‘I learnt so much from Instagram and YouTube, there is so much free information out there, it’s amazing.’

Have you completed an amazing DIY transformation you fancy showing off?

Get in touch to tell us more by emailing [email protected].

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