Tauranga woman wins renovation award

Donna Youngman receiving her certificate for NZPIF/Resene Renovation of the Year. Photo: Kevin Bridle.

A local property investor's clever use of a relocatable home has won her the NZPIF/Resene Renovation of the Year award.

Donna Youngman received her trophy and certificate at the New Zealand Property Investors Federation annual conference last month.

The focus of the award is on structural and decorating renovations. It is open to all members of Property Investors Associations affiliated to the NZPIF who are renovating or managing the renovation of a property or properties in New Zealand.

Donna saw a magazine ad for the competition, and after discussing the idea with other members of the Tauranga Property Investors Association, decided to give it a go.

“I sat up until 4am organising it all, putting the before, during, and after photos on a disc, before sending it off the next day.”

She says the renovation was finished in July 2016, and is the second relocatable home she's done. She and her husband bought the Poike section on which the winning renovation sits in 2002, back when there was only one three-bedroom brick home on the 679 square metre site.

The house being relocated onto the property. Supplied photos.

“Some of the tenants had trouble keeping the lawns under control. While I was putting a new kitchen in, I had to mow the lawn at the same time, and realised it was quite a big job. So I thought another house on the site would fix that problem.”

She initially considered building a house from scratch, but was told it would cost around $300,000. So instead, she paid a third of that to relocate an existing home onto the site.

“It's a very unusual shape, like a teardrop. It's narrow at the back with the main bedroom, and gets bigger at the front. It was perfect for the section, though.”

The 1950s rimu weatherboard house has aluminium ranch sliders and a new roof, as well as full insulation.

Since house takes up most of its section, Donna also made the decision not to have a lawn.

“I put weed mat right around the outside of the house and filled it with a grey metal chip. So there's no lawns to mow, which is funny, as the latest tenant is a lawn mowing contractor. But he thinks it's great.”

The house and land have recently been given a rateable value of $370,000, and the judges for the award commented on Donna's excellent use of space on the section, and the paints she used – all Resene, of course.

“I was pretty excited to win. I received a nice certificate and trophy, and I was surprised to be awarded $1500 from Resene. $500 also went to the Tauranga Property Investors Association.”


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