Trading places: Pinjarra families swap homes

LIFESTYLE: Sharnah and Matt Cook and their children, Blayze and Zayde celebrate moving onto their new acreage. Photo: Supplied
LIFESTYLE: Sharnah and Matt Cook and their children, Blayze and Zayde celebrate moving onto their new acreage. Photo: Supplied

Friday was the big day for two Western Australian families .

It was moving day for the Hicks and Cook families of Pinjarra. They both had removalists leaving their homes at 9.30am and both had settlement at 10am. Not a coincidence - they moved into each other's houses and theirs is a story of beautiful community spirit.

"We've even shared packing boxes," mum-of-two and Alcoa machine operator Sharnah Cook said.

"They told us that they're both retired and can they do anything to help. They have let us take items to the property ahead of time and have been nothing but amazing," she said of Rob and Jill Hicks, whose home they are moving into.

The Cooks say they've saved money and time after the owners of the house they bought, bought theirs. Yet still time's in short supply as Sharnah and Matt both work full-time and have two active primary school-aged children.

The Cook family.

The Cook family.

It's an unusual situation that two families buy each others homes and one that Harcourts agent Paul Harris hasn't come across before in his 24 years of working in real estate.

"It's the first time I've had this happen," Mr Harris said. "I knew the [retired couple] wanted the area the Cooks were living in. I said we've got a subject sale, let's go and see if it suits you. It just worked out so nice. Both parties have been absolutely beautiful people. They're just wrapped and it's a great result for both."

The Hicks wanted to downsize and be close to the school their grandchildren attend but still wanted enough room to have the grandchildren over and space for caravan and boat parking.

The Naturaliste Drive property in Pinjarra's Country Roads Estate fit the bill.

The retired couple downsized into the suburban property on Naturaliste Drive in Pinjarra. Photo: File Image.

The retired couple downsized into the suburban property on Naturaliste Drive in Pinjarra. Photo: File Image.

The Cooks tomorrow move onto the acreage on Beacham Road with room for the children to run around, ride motorbikes, kick the football and keep some sheep.

The properties are just a five-minute drive apart.

Mr Harris said being winter, the real estate market had slowed somewhat but homes were still selling relatively fast.

"There is more demand for 2-5 acre lifestyle properties," Mr Harris said. "We seem to be seeing more people moving from Perth for those properties, there has been quite an influx of people wanting to get away from the city."

The lifestyle property at Beacham Road.

The lifestyle property at Beacham Road.

Ms Cook said there were many people at most of the viewings they went to.

"We didn't think we could afford this property and because the building process takes so long at the moment - three years people are being told - more people are wanting to buy. At the moment, it's easier to buy a house than rent if you can afford it."

The Cooks built their first house and "loved it" but said it was always going to be a stepping stone to something bigger.

This story The Western Australian families that traded places, literally first appeared on Mandurah Mail.