James Legge is an architect and founding director of Six Degrees Architects.
Where do you live?
In a community of 10 homes in a park in Brunswick with my family and dog. Development ended almost nine years ago. It included the restoration of most of the contaminated parliamentary land, the development of a small city park, and the construction of 10 family-centered townhouses facing the park. It was developed by me and my wife, Sarala Fitzgerald, McCorkel Constructions, and Environmental Earth Sciences.
What kind of property do you own?
This house and a villa I bought with two other families on the Mornington Peninsula. I really couldn’t afford it at the time, but I wish I had it when my child was young. It was good to have it.
What do you like best about your home?
Community / community. We see many neighbors and their children as all townhouses are open facing the park. Depending on where the mob settled, the house may have no or eight children, but it was clearly calm during COVID-19. And on summer nights, we tend to float in the park with a glass of wine and chat.
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Did you change anything?
We have three kids and we don’t have enough bedrooms so we recently built another room above for a 16 year old kid. This brings us to four levels. If you need fresh socks from the basement laundry, there are plenty of stairs.
What is the most memorable house you lived in?
There were so many things when I was 10 years old, including staying at a thatched village house in Oxfordshire, England for a year. ..
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Your first foot on the property ladder?
Development I did with a few colleagues to afford a house. I bought a 1970s clothing factory in Fitz Roy and split it into four townhouses. I saved some money and borrowed $ 10,000 from my parents for deposits and some of the basic subdivisions. Then I sold one of the shells to pay off most of the loan, borrowed another loan and lived with another loan.
The best real estate advice you’ve heard?
Please take the plunge if you can. There is never a perfect time or a perfect fortune.
The worst property advice you’ve heard?
“Don’t overcapitalize.” Boring! Of course, if you’re staying for a couple of years, be aware of how much you spend there. But is it possible to overcapitalize if you expect to be there for the next 20 years? You’re probably only about 80 years on earth, so enjoy 20 years in the house you’re building.
James Legge, Six Degrees Architects: Home Truths
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