Jodi Monaghan, longtime resident of Lethbridge, found Calgary’s Lakeview community the perfect place to buy an older home and renovate it. Photo by Andrea Cox / For CREB®Now

Jodi Monaghan finds joy in personalizing her new home

Three years ago, Jodi Monaghan was on the precipice of change. She’d been living in Lethbridge for close to 30 years, her children were grown and she’d recently sold her dental practice. Monaghan wanted a fresh start in a bigger city with the right market conditions for opening a new clinic.

A new relationship had her traveling back and forth between Calgary and Lethbridge, and the more time she spent in Calgary, the more she realized that she loved the city. So she began searching for an older home in an established neighbourhood. She wanted a home she could renovate and make her own. In October, 2014 she found and purchased a 50-year-old, four-level split bungalow in the community of Lakeview.

CREB®Now: How was the purchasing process?

Monaghan: At the time, homes were really hard to come by in Lakeview. In fact, I missed out on a couple because they would come up on the market and sell immediately. So when this house came up, it was a real foot race to get the offer in. The REALTOR® called, I toured it that day and then put the offer in right away. Luckily, I got it. In hindsight it worked out well, but it was a crazy time. I had to decide right away, and that was really stressful. And the market in Lakeview is still crazy; the demand is still intense despite the recession. When my boyfriend bought his home in Lakeview in the fall of 2016, he bought it sight unseen.

CREB®Now: Your home looks beautiful. Did you have a plan or did it evolve over time?

Monaghan: When I bought it, I didn’t have a plan. I purchased an older home because I really like the unique things that you can do with a renovation. The basement was unfinished and I literally gutted the rest of the home, built a deck and changed the exterior. I hired a designer to draw plans for the basement, but the rest of the house, I did myself. I spent a lot of time online, picking out all of the designs. I had a folder for everything and I knew exactly how I wanted it all to look. It’s taken a few years to get it all finished and it was a labour of love. I had so much fun.

CREB®Now: Was this the right move?

Monaghan: I was just thinking today how much I love this house. I feel like it is my house because I made it exactly how I wanted it. I look at all of the furniture, which I have had forever and all of the little things that make it my house and I love it. If I had to do it again, I would do it exactly the same way. It’s nice that it is not really huge and I enjoy everything about it – the location, the deck. Lakeview is beautiful – the trees are nice and big, the homes are older and have some charm. I’m super happy.