Couple add £80,000 to the value of their outdated three-bedroom home

Thrifty couple who had never painted a room or used a drill renovate dated 1930s three-bedroom home for £37,000 by doing most of the work themselves – and have added £80,000 to the value

  • Molly Bell, 26, and Sam Heptonstall, 29, from Staffordshire, bought 1930s home for £185,000 in August 2020
  • Initially thought only had to redecorate three-bedroom house, but realised it needed renovation throughout
  • The couple added £80,000 to the value of their home thanks to DIY hacks and by upcycling old furniture

A couple have shared the incredible transformation of their home after giving the house a full renovation – which has added £80,000 to the property value.

Molly Bell, 26, and Sam Heptonstall, 29, from Staffordshire, bought their 1930s home for £185,000 in August 2020.

The house was painted in bright colours with dated furnishings, and the couple were desperate to give it a makeover to better suit their tastes.

The detached property had three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a kitchen, dining room, lounge, and conservatory.

When they first bought the home, they were ‘naïve’ and thought it just needed redecorating, but they quickly realised they needed to rewire and plaster the entire property.

The couple admitted they were ‘naive’ when they bought the house, initially thinking they’d just need to redecorate the 1930s build. Pictured: the living-room now, with cream carpet and furnishings 

The couple soon realised after buying the house they’d need a bit more than a lick of paint to make it more modern. Pictured: the kitchen with brown cupboards and tiles before the renovations

Molly Bell, 26, and Sam Heptonstall, 29, from Staffordshire, bought their 1930s home for £185,000 in August 2020 and have added £80,000 to its value thanks to DIY renovations amounting to £37,000, completed in just four months. Pictured: the kitchen after the home makeover 

‘When we first looked around the house we fell in love with it straight away,’ said marketing manager Molly.

‘We wanted to put our own stamp on it and create something we could call our own, so we decided to go for it and do a complete renovation.

‘It soon turned into a building site!’

While renovating, they also decided to make the kitchen open-plan to incorporate the dining room by removing an internal wall.

Before the renovations, pictured, Molly and Sam’s beige master bedroom was in dire need of a lick of paint and some new carpeted floor

The outdated home was painted with bright colours and did not reflect Molly and Sam’s style, so they tasked themselves with redoing it all. Pictured: the master bedroom after the renovations 

Pictured: the lounge during the renovations, with just the fireplace insert and cables visible after it was stripped of its wallpaper and floorings 

Pictured: the couple’s new fireplace in the living-room, which they fitted with cream carpet and green furnishings, including two sofas

They then decided to re-work the conservatory with a new roof, bi-fold doors to create a separate lounge in the space.

While they hired professionals to carry out the larger jobs – including removing the wall, working on the conservatory and the electrics – Molly and Sam took charge of the cosmetic work.

She said: ‘The majority of the work took place in the second lockdown so we had evenings and weekends where we could just crack on and get stuff finished. We would sometimes be here until 9 or 10pm at night finishing off bits.

Molly and Sam, pictured, bough the detached three-bedroom, two bathrooms house in in August 2020, thinking they’d only need to redecorate it 

Pictured: Sam and Molly celebrating in front of the house after purchasing it for £185,000 in August 2020, before the renovations started  

Pictured: The couple took down the wall between the kitchen and dining-room in order to create an open-plan sitting and dining area, which they decorated with a central island and wicker chair, pictured

‘Me and Sam were useless going into this – I’d never even painted a room before and Sam hadn’t used a drill, but you just kind of learn as you go.’

The thrifty couple have cut costs wherever possible by using clever DIY tricks and upcycling furniture to suit their tastes without splashing out on new items.

Molly gave their downstairs shower/utility room a makeover on a budget using some leftover Frenchic black paint and marble vinyl cover which cost £10. She painted the chrome shower doors, then painted the utility cupboards and covered the work surface in the marble sticky roll.


Molly joked the house soon turned into a building site after the couple decided to renovate it. Pictured: the kitchen full of rubble during the renovations 

The couple chose a tasteful white cupboard unit for their kitchen, which now includes two ovens, a wine fridge and a beautiful stove, perfect for cooking, pictured

Pictured: One of the property’s bathrooms before the renovations, with mint green walls and outdated white and green tiles, pictured

Pictured: the bathroom after. Sam and Molly got rid of the green paint, changed the tiles as well as the bathtub in order to update the room

Before the renovations, left, the backyard contained a green garden shed and no grass. The couple retiled the floor, right, installed false grass and got rid of the shed 

Molly and Sam’s costs breakdown 

£10,000 – conservatory

£8,000 kitchen

£3,000 – plastering

£1,400 – electrics

£1,500 – wall removed + steel beam

£2,800 – bathroom

£3,000 – flooring + carpets

£4,000 – garden

£3,300 – paint, panelling materials, furniture

=£37,000 

 

She also upcycled an old storage box using leftover paint from another project for a makeover that didn’t cost a penny.

Molly also turned a £17 plain glass vase from IKEA into an on-trend neutral toned decorative pot using a sample pot of concrete-effect spray from B&Q which cost £5.50. She estimates a similar stone vase would have cost £40.

She even tried her hand at arts and crafts, creating her own abstract art piece for the lounge, spending £20 on paints and a canvas – as opposed to an estimated £300 that a similar art piece could have set them back.

The couple also did the panelling in their bedroom and the dining room themselves, following Instagram video tutorials and spending £150 on materials.

They finished the interior renovations in just under four months, moving in on 19 December 2021.

In the garden they removed old decking and added a patio area and grass, finishing work on the outside in March 2021.

They also gave the property a lick of paint on the exterior, brightening it up to a fresh white colour.

The couple got their home revalued and found it had increased by £80,000 and is now worth £265,000.

In total, they spent £37,000 on the transformation – including £10,000 on new bi-fold doors and the conservatory roof, which was the most expensive aspect of the renovation.

Molly said: ‘We are completely finished now and it has completely transformed our home.

‘We’re really pleased with the results – we’ve created our dream home, which we can see us living in forever.’

Pictured: the front exterior of the house last Christmas, before Molly and Sam started with the £37,000 four-months-long renovations 

Before the renovation, the conservatory  had a see-through ceilling, which made the room look less clean than it was, with leaves and dirt collecting on the panel, pictured

Pictured: the kitchen and dining area during the renovations, after the couple took down the wall that separated the two rooms to turn it into one


Pictured left: the dining-room before Molly and Sam had the wall taken down. Pictured right: the dining area now, with soft floorings and white panelled walls

Pictured: the conversatory now. Redoing this room’s ceilling was the couple’s biggest expense, costing £10,000 of the renovations price altogether 

Pictured: the entrance hallway, leading to the kitchen, right, and the stairs, right, before it was completely redone by the couple 

After the renovations, pictured, the hallway welcomes more light. Molly and Sam panelled the wall by the stairs, redid the floor and repainted the walls 

Pictured: the office space, with a small desk and char next to a bed, after the couple redid one of the spare bedrooms to make it into a work from home station

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