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Home Town: A Bungalow in Blue

Erin and Ben fashion a special home for a very special citizen of Laurel, revitalizing a long-neglected 1920s bungalow into a charming and vibrant home with a cottage feel and a bold color palette.

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Photo: Todd Douglas/ Getty Images

A Makeover on Main Street

Ben and Erin transformed a vacant and visually nondescript house near Laurel's downtown into this eye-catching home for their friend and colleague, Judi Holifield. She had been looking for a long time, searching for a house she could fall in love with. "I've looked at many properties through the years," she said, "It's time for Ben and Erin to step in and rescue me."  

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Meet the Homeowners

Judi Holifield isn’t just a Laurel, Mississippi resident. She’s director of Laurel Main Street, an organization dedicated to the city's historic preservation and downtown revitalization — an initiative close to Ben and Erin's hearts. "Judi has been the director of Laurel Main Street for close to 10 years," says Erin, "and when she came on board, that's when the tide turned for Laurel." Judi had been living about 20 minutes outside town and wanted to move into the city to be closer to her job and to friends. Her son Allen, also a Laurel resident, is a first-year graduate student studying classical music. Judi's all-in budget was $125,000.

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The Overstreet House. Erin wanted to find a place for Judi with some built-in charm, but one where she might incorporate some quirky or offbeat elements in keeping with Judi's adventurous style. This house was one Judi had passed on her way to work countless times. It was built in 1925 and purchased in the 1940s by Marvin and Delores Overstreet who lived there for 72 years. The house came with some appealing features like large windows, exterior dentil molding and a generally cottagey feel. The downside was general wear and tear, and a plain white palette. The house was listed for $45,000 and Ben estimated the total cost of renovations at around $86,000, with around $18,000 going to exterior improvements.

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Erin's Vision

To transform the exterior, Erin envisioned an American themed color palette – including blue exterior, white trim and a red door – all helping to accent the home’s classic Americana style.

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