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How a 12-day makeover did the trick
A dramatic 12-day makeover transformed a tatty Oxford house and clinched a sale from the first viewing.
Software engineer Dr Patrick Fischer and GP Dr Susanne Fischer have owned their five-storey Georgian house in St John Street for 20 years but let it for the past four.
The couple tried to sell the property, valued at £1.5m, but had no success.
Patrick said: “We had people through the doors but it was in such a state, it didn’t lead to any offers.”
They contacted house doctor Sonia Kearns, of Oxford-based FrontDoorz, for help.
Patrick added: “Sonia explained it was all about making the house feel and look like a £1.5m property.
“People find it difficult to look at a tattered shell and see what it could become. We decided to trust to her vision and put her in charge.”
Two days after the tenant moved out, a team of decorators, plumbers, electricians and carpenters moved in.
The makeover included removing old mirrors and lighting, boxing in an unsightly boiler, decorating throughout, fixing rotten window frames, sanding floors and repairing a leak. Furniture and props were also used to ‘dress’ the house and give it atmosphere.
The couple spent £10,000 on labour and materials plus Front Doorz’s fees, which start from £45 an hour.
Two days after the work was finished, an American buyer who viewed it through agents Penny & Sinclair made an offer on the spot.
Patrick added: “My wife was a bit dubious to start with, wondering why we should lay new carpet for a house we were selling but it was very much worth the investment.”