Kid-Friendly Living: Popular Brookhaven neighborhood offers home to make their own

Kid-Friendly Living

Some parents aren’t fixated with finding a perfect, move-in ready home. They may be interested in renovating or updating the home to improve the floor plan or space to fit their family’s needs.

That’s what happened with David and Stephanie Weston, parents of 4-year-old Greer, who purchased a home in Brookhaven.

The priority

Finding a bigger home and a better school district were at the top of their list. The three-bedroom, two-bath Atlanta home, in DeKalb County, that they were selling was built in 1952 and was a little over 1,400 square feet.

“We had been going back and forth a couple of years. It was just a lot of work getting a house ready to be put on the market. We finally bit the bullet and did it,” said Stephanie, 31, a client account manager.

Stephanie and David, 35, who works in sales, got a contact in 43 days, assisted by Stacey Morris with Keller Williams Realty Premier Atlanta.

Then they looked to buy a “diamond in the rough,” Stephanie said. “We weren’t looking for something done to the nines but we weren’t looking for something falling apart either.”

The search

They focused on Atlanta’s Brookhaven neighborhood, centered on Montgomery Elementary School, which friends recommended. Finding a home in the $400,000 or lower price range proved difficult. They either found homes at a much lower price point, or much higher, but not in between, Stephanie said.

When they first saw the home they bought, the photos online didn’t seem like it would meet their needs, she said. But when they looked at it in person, it was a different case. The bathrooms and kitchens had been updated (features include granite countertops), and the house had at least one feature they didn’t have in the home they were selling - a fireplace.

“We didn’t have to gut it and start over,” Stephanie said.

The home

A four-bedroom, four-bath built in 1956 with about 2,700 square feet, which they bought in June. Other than it needing a new roof (the cost was negotiated into the sale price), the home was in great condition, Stephanie said. They also gained extra space, compared to their previous home, with a separate dining room, eat-in kitchen, family room, living room and office.

“Her bedroom is humungous now, compared to her old room. She has a walk-in closet. She has her own bathroom,” Stephanie said.

The office became a downstairs playroom for Greer, and they use an extra bedroom upstairs as an office.

To open up the flow of the house, they took down a wall. They also removed some of the windows from the back of the house and put in French doors leading to the patio.

“I love the way the house opens up to the backyard. Before, we had to go down from steps to get to it,” Stephanie said. “We have a nice, flat, big backyard.”

The lifestyle

Their neighborhood, Brittany, is a private swim-tennis community with additional amenities including a lake, trails and bike paths. The neighborhood also holds events at the lake during the summer and holidays. “It’s a great, family-oriented neighborhood,” Stephanie said. “It had a lot to do with the decision we made to buy.”