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Their castle in Omokoroa

For Rachel and BJ Ratana, their three children and dog ‘Old Boy’, their journey to get into their Classic Builders home was so good, it was better than ‘too good to be true’.

An old wives’ tale claims that pregnant women get an overwhelming urge to ‘nest’ immediately before the onset of labour. Mother of three Rachel is not currently expecting, but her nesting ability is vehemently strong.

Despite three sports-mad children, a sawdusty builder husband, and aging pooch, ‘Old Man’, her new home sparkles.

“Yep, I’ll admit I’m a little OCD - it’s always tidy! Our last home was older and no matter how much I cleaned, it never really felt clean,” she says.

“Everything we owned was either well-worn or had come to us as hand me downs. When I told my husband that I wasn’t taking anything with us when we moved, he looked a bit worried!”

But husband BJ needn’t fret. Buying new doesn’t necessarily come with a hefty price tag. Rachel’s systematically savvy approach offers a harmonious balance, between on-trend interior design and incredible comfort; combining splurge investment pieces with savvy décor items. The finished result showcases Rachels naturally creative flair and is testament to what can be achieved with a blank canvas.

Their new home sits proudly at the top end of a quiet little lane in Omokoroa’s Kaimai Views, and it’s more than just a new home - it is their castle.

It’s the result of a lot of hard work, but Rachel and BJ are grateful to have had Classic Builders at their side.

 “Throughout the process, we kept thinking it was all too easy - the progression from one stage to the next was seamless. Honestly? We were trying to be realistic and aware that something might crop up. But it never did”.

The living room whites are dressed in soft furnishings of semi-burnt dusky yellow hues, offset perfectly with contrasting charcoals.

"It's pretty clear that I love the colour mustard,” says Rachel, “even my wardrobe is full of it!"

Each of the children’s bedrooms has been thoughtfully put together, tailored by Mum to suit their personalities. A large mirror hangs on a feature wall in daughter Tanieka’s room and is framed by drapings of ivy – all of which came from Kmart. The boys share a sleeping area and thanks to cleverly configured storage, there’s still plenty of space for play.

The master bedroom with ensuite and walk-in wardrobe is more sanctuary than it is boudoir. Although beautifully organised and incredibly inviting, it’s not Rachel’s favourite room - that title belongs entirely to the kitchen. The culinary hub is the only spot within the home to receive tweaks in design, and the slightly altered layout creates unity between kitchen, living and dining. Metro subway tiles replace the standard splashback and offer modern, charming charisma.

“It’s something we had to spend a little more money on, but it was worth it. It works so perfectly for us this way,” she says.

With warmer months looming, the Ratana’s plan to add some final touches to the deck with outdoor furniture, large pots and citrus trees. They say a builder’s house is never finished, but husband BJ has done an outstanding job in completing the home with this alfresco gem. Shrouded in privacy by a neighbouring shelterbelt, it’s an open invitation for summer soirees.

“We are all looking forward to our first summer here, and I can already picture this as the spot where we’ll be spending a lot of quality time together,” says Rachel. “I’ll likely be in the kitchen of course, but thanks to the sliding window, I’ll still be included in the giggles happening outside.”

And as for Kaimai Views? Rachel says the neighbourly vibe is perfect for her and the family.

 “We’ve already had a few street parties, themed dinner nights and barbecues,” she says. “There’s a nice feeling here - it’s safe, it’s old school, and it’s the way it should be.”

Classic Builders is preparing to release stage five of Kaimai Views to the market this month. Whether you're like Rachel, looking for a family home with a designer twist, or a first home buyer looking to take the first step onto the property ladder, there's something to suit all lifestyles and budgets.

A select number of KiwiBuild homes will be available in this release for those who act fast. Call into the Kaimai Views showhome, which services the wider Bay of Plenty and Omokoroa, or phone: 0508 4 CLASSIC.

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