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A fixer-upper is transformed into a modern coastal retreat

And the key design feature that inspired it all...

When couple Amy and Bodhi stumbled across an unpolished property in the coastal town of Coffs Harbour, they envisioned a swift and simple home flip. But just two months after purchasing, this vision quickly changed when the pair realised they were pregnant with their first child. The idea of slowly updating their newly purchased fixer-upper morphed into a pressing mission to create their forever home, complete with a dazzling pool, light-filled interiors, and fibre cement exterior cladding for impressive street appeal.


Designing your dream home can be a daunting experience, so Amy sourced inspiration from renovating trio Three Birds Renovations. “The Three Birds team had just done this big, beautiful white house in Northern NSW. That started my inspiration for both the materials and the look we were going for,” she says.

With the aim of building an enduring home for their growing family, Amy and Bodhi wanted to invest in high-quality products and finishes. As such, their brief highlighted a white-on-white coastal haven created with durable and timeless materials, such as fibre cement cladding.


As a relaxed couple who enjoy the outdoors, Amy and Bodhi were drawn to Coffs Harbour for its beautiful beaches and laidback atmosphere. In turn, their dream house needed to reflect its seaside surrounds and accommodate their outdoorsy lifestyle. On the must-have list? Open-plan living areas, floor-to-ceiling windows, and a brilliant blue pool and pergola to enhance the indoor-outdoor connection.


“It had to be an open plan layout where we could walk from one end of the home to the other without walls in the way. We wanted to feel like we were outside all the time,” says Amy. An abundance of windows were installed to conjure this feeling, which meant the exterior building material needed to be easily shaped around them.

Hardie™ Fine Texture Cladding was the perfect solution to establish the sleek, modern rendered style the couple desired. “Three Birds Renovations use James Hardie products in almost every house. You can see the quality in the work, and that’s really what I wanted,” she says.


The simplicity of the Hardie Fine Texture Cladding emphasises the architectural features of the family-friendly home and creates a beautiful backdrop. Its subtle texture gives the all-white exterior a nice matte finish, leading to a striking streetscape. “It was easy to achieve the exact look I wanted thanks to the Hardie™ exterior cladding range. And the best part is that the product comes pre-sealed so I could pick any paint colour,” says Amy.


Inside, this modern coastal style house is a light-filled sanctuary, while the stunning exterior delivers trusted protection, long-lasting beauty and immense street appeal. “Our house stands out in the best way possible, and at least six other houses in the area have followed suit,” Amy shares. “People actually stop to ask us how we did it and use it for inspiration to transform their own houses.”

Brought to you by James Hardie. To help get you started with your modern renovation, download the James Hardie Renovation Guide.

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