Villas are an iconic part of the Auckland suburban cityscape. Take a walk down any number of Auckland city street and you will encounter an eclectic collection of Victorian villas, traditional worker’s cottages, and Californian bungalows. While these character homes were built incredibly well, usually with solid native timbers, there comes a time where they need some inevitable TLC.
Villa renovation has taken many forms, over the years. Originally, renovating a villa or bungalow was more of an iterative process, undertaken intermittently as the owner acquired more wealth. These original additions saw new bedrooms, decking and second stories added to these properties.
More recently, villa renovations in Auckland have been less about adding more floorspace and more about enhancing the livability of these beautiful character homes.
“There are a few things you can do to really lift a tired villa”, say Auckland villa renovation specialist, Darren Ettritch. “Modernizing kitchens and bathroom, installing skylights and opening up living areas can really improve a classic home’s livability”.
Ettritch, an Auckland builder, urges caution when undertaking a villa renovation or house extensions project of a character home. “It is important you do not compromise the original charm and appeal of the villa home. Sometimes, less is more”.
Ettritch recommends consulting both a builder and an architect who has previous experience in renovating character buildings. “It’s quite a different skillset to contemporary building. You must work very diligently and look to retain the original elements, where possible”.
“You want to strike the perfect balance between a modern, comfortable home and the tradition charm of a character building. Villas and Bungalows have a timeless look that many buyers look for, the last thing you want to do is transform your villa into just another modern home”
Ettritch is available for character home restoration projects through Auckland, the North Shore and Warkworth and is contactable via his website.