Being fifty-something often means change. Physical changes, outlook changes, family changes, housing changes.
For us, Boy Wonder’s recent shift to the big smoke signals that we are (like it or not) empty-nesters. Just me, Mr P and Jack Sparrow (Pirate Cat) remain aboard the Mothership. This house is a far heavier footprint than we need (or want).
We’ve been hokey-pokeying around the downsizing dance for a while now. And here. We’ve thought about selling up and moving to a smaller place nearby, renting out the lower level of our house, perhaps even jumping on the air B&B bandwagon. We’ve even considered selling up and “rational renting” to taste-test some other living locales.
And then the universe delivered us another option. I started working with a new client, a specialist in residential property subdivision. As I took the brief at our initial meeting (asking about ideal clients, demographics, key messages, value propositions, what’s different?) it dawned on me that we were smack-bang in the demographic and that we might have an opportunity to subdivide and unlock the equity in our backyard.
We live in a high-demand area and our block’s reasonably large (628 square metres) with front and rear access. The main part of our home (to the front of the block) is an Edwardian beauty with original period features. On a lower level to the rear is a seventies extension, a triple garage and some decking.
We’ve had a follow-up meeting and site visit with the subdivision specialist and an architect and we’re looking at an option to demolish the non-original buildings to the rear of the property and subdivide the space into two titles.
There are lots of hoops to jump through and a motherlode of what ifs to consider. If it’s possible to subdivide, do we sell both properties? build ourselves a townhouse on the rear block? live in the front property? keep them both as rentals?
We have a whole lot more hokey pokeying to do.
For now we have this:
It’s a rough plan created to go with an application for approval to put a crossover (driveway) at the front of the property. That’s our first stumbling block. A yay or nay there will help us decide what our real options are.
Wish us luck as we put our left leg in and shake it all about on this down-the-rabbit-hole adventure into subdivision.