I bought my rundown council house for £37.5k – five years later it’s worth £170k, all thanks to my love of DIY shows | The Sun

A mum bought her council house for £37.5k – and it’s now been valued at an eye-watering £170k.

Fay Murrish, 33, and husband Micheal, 36, bought their council house in 2018 at a knockdown price because they lived there at the time.

According to official government stats the average house price was £243k. 

The property, then worth £60k, has now more than tripled in value.

Despite having no formal qualifications, the DIY enthusiasts set about their renovations with such stunning results that their home is now an Instagram favourite and a million people have watched it online. 

Mum-of-three, Fay, from Seaham, County Durham, said the amazing increase was due to her love of home renovation programs.

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“I am obsessed with home improvement shows on telly. I love them and I apply every year to take part,” she explained.

“I am always coming up with new ideas and designs for our home. My husband just rolls his eyes because he knows it will become my new project.”

The family, including Chase, 13, Cole, 10 and eight-year-old Chanel, moved into their four-bedroom home in June 2018, paying £37.5k after the council offered them a 30 percent discount under the Right to Buy scheme. 

The asking price was average for their street at that time and they had already lived in the house for a year which is a council requirement. 

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The couple took out a mortgage to afford the property and their subsequent planned renovations.

Fay said: “I had loads of changes in mind, and we got builders in to add a loft conversion and knock down some walls so we could make the bedrooms and bathrooms much bigger.

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“I gave myself the job of project manager. Micheal is an HGV driver and I had him driving up and down the country to source a particular type of skirting board or door.

“I sourced everything myself and we did lots of the work ourselves too, to save money as much as possible. Micheal works hard and I am a full-time carer for our daughter, who was born with complex health issues and became the youngest ever open heart patient in the UK when she was born.

“We have to be very careful with our money but we wanted to put everything we had into creating a lovely family home for our children.

“It wasn’t easy, juggling motherhood with DIY, and we had to negotiate our way through covid and brexit which really held up our supplies.

“At one point we had no roof on the house. Another time, we were all sleeping in one bedroom. We had to bathe in a room filled with rubble with no wall. It was chaotic.”

When the building work was finished, Fay took over the indoor décor.

 She says: “I was forever coming up with new designs and I really enjoyed it. As each room was finished, I felt a real sense of pride.

“The kids’ favourite room is probably the kitchen. They love sitting at the island and helping me cook, doing their homework or chatting about their days. It has totally changed how we interact with each other and use each of our new spaces.

“They like the ensuite bathroom too because they have two showers side by side, which are great for water fights!

“My own personal favourite is the ensuite, all in gold, because it just feels like a little bit of luxury in my day. I love using gold and black accents in rooms. Gold gives the touch of luxury while I think black is dramatic.

“Our pantry has been the biggest hit on Instagram and I think over the past few years the organisation of spaces has become a big hit with people. We don’t have a big house, but we do make the best use of the space.”

Fay’s Instagram posts clocked up over a million views in 72 hours and views currently stand at over 1.5 million.

She says: “In total, the work has cost us about £90k and we have added so much more than that to our house value. At the moment, we’ve hit the top price for our street. We are really proud of the work and love we can show there is no limit for any property.

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 “But it’s not all about money.

“We have wonderful views overlooking a golf course with the beach beyond. We have created a home that works for us and suits our family life and how we like to live. We’ve gone from a house to a home that will see our family hopefully through many years to come.''

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