Success Stories

Joanna & Stuart Williams

We had lived for years in a villa with no off-street parking and had resigned ourselves to tramping our children and groceries through the rain and up the long flight of stairs to the front door. 

We loved the idea of an internal access garage but found it hard to imagine how to incorporate this without compromising the integrity of our villa. 

We realised also it would be a large and inconvenient project, potentially requiring us to move out of our home.

Having made the decision to embark on this project we engaged Terry early on in the process. He worked alongside ourselves and the architect to come up with a design that was exceptionally functional, aesthetically pleasing and efficient to build.

We commenced the building work with some trepidation – living in the house above while all of the ground was excavated from beneath our feet. The team at Characterise not only made us feel safe at all times but went out of their way to minimise the disruption and mess.


Terry ensured we had safe access into our home right throughout the renovation. This often required him to construct temporary paths and steps, and we were so grateful to the lengths he went to to ensure we were inconvenienced as little as possible.

Our fears about compromising the integrity of our villa were unfounded. Not only did the design work well, but the detail and finishing were of exceptional standard and matched the existing house perfectly. We engaged the team further to modernise the kitchen / family area at the rear of the house and again were very impressed. Terry and his team were all extremely approachable, courteous and friendly and at all times.

"The team at Characterise not only made us feel safe at all times but went out of their way to minimise the disruption and mess" 


As with any renovation there were a myriad of decisions to be made throughout. We really appreciated the wealth of experience Terry has to draw on, and willingness to offer advice throughout the project. He was extremely proactive at making suggestions and recommendations, which resulted in a stunning finish. 

Another area that was so impressive was Terry’s strength in project management. He arranged all the tradesmen we needed on site and his careful forward planning meant that there was never any downtime in waiting for a particular trade to come to the site. He ensured that his team would always have other parts of the project to work on while sub-contractors were busy in certain areas. All the subcontractors engaged by Characterise were equally professional. The overall project management meant we were only required to move out of our home for a very short time saving us much inconvenience.

You might expect that neighbours would be a bit negative toward such a large scale renovation taking place next door. However, our neighbours repeatedly commented on how impressed they were at having such an “orderly” building site next door and that it was the “best run project they had ever seen”.

Now on a rainy day we enjoy driving into the warmth and comfort of our new internal access garage and workshop, and the additional rumpus and bathroom are invaluable additional spaces for our two children. Best of all as carry our groceries up the new internal kauri stairs and look around, it’s difficult to imagine it wasn’t always like this.
See the transformation with the Before and After shots below!



Before - a parking nightmare, dragging groceries from the street.  After - life transformed!