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Is this the housing commission makeover to end all housing commission makeovers?

Is this the housing commission makeover to end all housing commission makeovers?

Ever since I wrote about this $600,000 house on Donald Road a couple of years ago, I’ve been literally obsessed with ex-housing commission houses that have been completely renovated and transformed.

Well – I think I’ve found the makeover to end them all.

Say hello to 7 Boronia Crescent, Karabar, the little house that stopped me in my tracks while scrolling through real estate website Zango this week. It’s going to auction on Wednesday night with a price guide of $605,000.


I wish the family who first lived here in the 1970s could see it now.

It still looks like a government house from the outside – which I love – but as is the fashion in Karabar at the moment, it’s been dipped in a colour palette on outside that’s brought it right into 2022. And then there’s the inside.

According to sales agent Jeremy Julian, from LJ Hooker Kippax, the three-bedroom home still has its original footprint, nothing’s been added or removed (which explains the toilet in the bathroom). 

The only exception is that a double-door, where the side lounge room window once was, now leads to an amazing covered pergola, perfect for footy grand finals and the cricket.

“The awesome bit about buying a former government house is you get a big backyard, generally a great location and a house that’s easy to maintain,” Jeremy says.

“With this one, it’s literally walk in and relax. There’s nothing left to do.”


(Anyway – what is an agent from north Canberra doing selling a house in Queanbeyan? I ask Jeremy this question. He laughs. “I’ve known the seller for a long time, she’s a good friend, and with the LJ Hooker network, we send in potential buyers from any and every office.”) 

The seller of 7 Boronia Crescent is a single woman who’s decided to move to Canberra, but the renovations had already been completed when she bought the house a couple of years ago.

Boronia Crescent is about 60 per cent privately owned and 40 per cent government housing, Jeremy says, reflecting the trend of young first home buyers buying ex-housing commission properties and renovating them into modern, comfortable homes.

With Queanbeyan South and Karabar High schools literally at the end of the street, the couple or family who move in can stay for “many many years”.

About 100m away in Cassia Crescent is another housing commission home that’s had a pretty extreme makeover. Number 10 also has four bedrooms and also retains its original floorplan.

This one is more of a blend of the old and the new. The bathroom wall tiles are very retro but in a colour and style that’s certainly made its way back in. There’s still the original Hills Hoist in the backyard and how good are the Florida-style feature pillars on the front verandah?

Number 10 Cassia Crescent, Queanbeyan, is for sale between $639,000 and $679,000.

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About the Author: Bree Element

Part bogan, part wannabe plus-size model and part journalist, Bree's the woman behind Q! News. She's a pop culture obsessive who's deeply in love with her hometown, Queanbeyan, and the neighbouring capital. A born storyteller, she's been writing locally, nationally and internationally for more than 25 years.