A Tale of Transformation: Our Sussex Airbnb Retreat

From dilapidated home formerly belonging to a factory manager to a gorgeous modern European style Airbnb; your Sussex home-away-from-home is waiting for you.

It’s been a little over two years since we embarked on our Sussex adventure. It all started with our move to the East in October 2021. Just days after arriving in this picturesque area, our curiosity led us to explore listings on realtor.ca. The very first listing that caught our eye was a weathered, 900-square-foot house in Sussex. That is now our stunning European-Style Home in Sussex.

With our curiosity piqued, we decided to take the plunge and arranged a tour with our dedicated realtor, Andy Childs. That crisp October morning, as we walked through the property, we realized that the photos had accurately captured its challenges. Still, we saw its potential. We made an offer, negotiated, and soon reached an agreement. That was the start of this Sussex Airbnb.

Trials and Triumphs

Our journey to transform this property into a charming Airbnb retreat had its fair share of hurdles. The delay in closing of our personal residence’s previous owners’ mortgage was just the beginning. That delayed our financing, but perseverance paid off. On a significant day—January 24, 2022, which also marked Bert’s birthday—we finally took possession of our new venture.

Renovations commenced promptly. We gutted the outdated kitchen, then awaiting the thawing of the ground for Joseph McDonalds House Movers. They lifted the house onto a fresh foundation. Upstairs, three bedrooms were reconfigured into two. Please don’t hate us, but we smashed a very old bathtub into pieces and removed it. We then replaced it with a new tiled-in shower.

When it came to furnishings, we embarked on a quest for quality without breaking the bank. To ensure everyone’s comfort, we sought out the perfect mattresses, ultimately finding gently-used options at budget-friendly prices.

Materials for our transformation were sourced from various places. The flooring came from Ritchies in Saint John, the kitchen from Home Hardware in Sussex, and Home Depot in Saint John provided paint, plumbing, and other necessities. While we faced some challenges in our dealings with Home Depot, including continuing delivery delays of our exterior doors, we persevered.

Putting on the Final Flourishes

As our home began to fill with furniture, we started advertising and even secured a few bookings. We kept our guests in the loop about our ongoing progress, forging a connection that we cherished. The decision to add a back deck proved to be transformative, with Dianne’s father and brother lending their expertise during their visit.

In July, our Sussex Airbnb underwent a professional post-construction cleaning, signifying the moment we could truly call it a home. Furniture was assembled, kitchen cabinets stocked, and artwork thoughtfully placed on the walls. Notably, we undertook the challenge of refinishing the staircase, transforming it with a modern, espresso-colored finish.

Our Sussex Sanctuary

Today, 18 months since our purchase, we are delighted to present our “new” home-away-from-home. With two bedrooms, each featuring a comfortable queen-sized bed, and a well-appointed three-piece bathroom, our Sussex sanctuary is ready to welcome guests. Our journey is far from over; future plans include siding and window upgrades, finishing the basement, and expanding with more bedrooms, an additional bathroom, laundry facilities, and a cozy rec room.

Whether you’re exploring the wonders of Fundy National Park in the summer or relishing winter adventures at Poley Mountain, our Sussex Airbnb retreat offers the perfect haven to unwind and create cherished memories.

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