For Suzanne, it was a crisis of confidence that had been a property purchase barrier. However, after attending one of Pure Finance’s Wine + Wisdom events, which helped to demystify the process, she is now the owner of a beautiful, light-filled apartment in Sydney’s Inner-West.
“At Wine + Wisdom, the wine means that everyone is relaxed enough to ask those ‘embarrassing’ finance questions. Brendan talked me through the purchase process using plain English rather than financial jargon, did some financial scenarios and made me realise that owning a property was achievable.”
Built as a three-storey manor in 1881, Suzanne’s home is full of character and is rich in history.
“I have learnt that Nicholas Hopson – who owned a millinery business in George Street Sydney – built the manor in 1881. The wealthy hat-maker named his home ‘Chevy Chase’, after ‘the Ballad of Chevy Chase’ which tells the story of a medieval battle between the Scottish and English (the name has nothing to do with the American actor Chevy Chase, star of the National Lampoon holiday films).”
“Mrs Sarah Cox, a nurse and private hospital owner, bought the manor in 1917 and ‘Chevy Chase’ became a nursing hospital during World War I. The building then changed owners a number of times and a company called Chevy Investments converted the manor into 12 flats in 1964.”
For now, Suzanne plans on getting back into savings mode, and her goal is to have one year’s worth of repayments in her offset account. However, she does have a few low-cost home projects planned for the coming year.
“Firstly, there is my art-deco table and chairs set, which is looking tragic-shabby-chic. But with a bit of sanding, painting and re-upholstery the set could be transformed back into its 1930s glory days when it was on display in David Jones’ furniture department.”
“There is also a lot of natural light in my apartment, so I’d like to have my own indoor plant haven. I am hoping that a one-day community course will mean I will evolve into an indoor gardener rather than regress back into my usual plant killer ways.”
What do you love most about your home?
“My home has plenty of character. Each apartment has a unique layout and everyone who lives here shares access to beautiful Victorian-style gardens.”
“Also, I recently noticed that the stain–glass windows in the main entrance door had two small images of a man or woman dressed in medieval dress. The names seemed familiar, but I couldn’t place them. The real estate agent then told me that the images were of the most recent owners of the building – a husband and wife team that owned the building and were responsible for the most recent renovations. The agent spoke about how their business truly is a labour of love for them, making it very lovely that their images are captured in the stain-glass entrance door.”