They got the house for free. Moving it and making it livable was a different matter entirely.
For many, owning a dream house is a pinnacle of achievement.
But imagine getting your dream house for free.
That’s precisely what happened to a Kansas couple, Julie and Eddie Flores. They were gifted an old Dutch colonial house in Lincoln, which they had always admired.
Despite its dilapidated state, the couple saw its potential and were determined to transform it into their forever home.
The house, built in 1910, had been abandoned for years.
Its exterior was far from appealing, with a damaged porch, peeling paint, and even a hole in the roof that squirrels used as an entrance.
But stepping inside, the couple was captivated.
They discovered beautiful hardwood floors hidden beneath carpets and a stunning staircase that immediately won their hearts.
“It had good bones,” Eddie remarked. “The minute we walked into the house, it was more of like, ‘Wow, this could be our forever home.’”
The house’s fate was uncertain.
If no new owner was found within a year, it risked being demolished.
The land it stood on belonged to the Lincoln County Hospital & Healthcare Foundation (LCHHF).
However, they offered the Lincoln Economic Development Foundation (LCEDF) a chance to find a new owner.
The catch? The house was free, but the new owner had to relocate it elsewhere in Lincoln.
The news spread rapidly, and many were interested, but the Flores couple’s genuine love for the house and their commitment to keeping it in Lincoln made them the perfect choice.
With the house now theirs, the couple embarked on an extensive renovation journey.
They started by replacing the roof and removing the front and back porches.
As they worked, they discovered a piece of history—a set of children’s handprints from 1973 on a concrete slab. Determined to preserve this memory, they decided to keep it.
“We just wanted to bring the history and the feel that the house did have with us to the new spot,” Julie explained.
But not all discoveries were pleasant. When they opened the walls, they found insulation infested with cockroaches. Despite the challenges, the couple remained undeterred. They had also bought a 3-acre plot from Julie’s father to build a new basement. However, they faced issues with the initial basement company they hired and had to find another solution.
The day to move the house finally arrived.
They hired Unruh House Moving for the task, costing them about $40,000.
The process was intricate, with the house being lifted onto the back of a truck and transported to its new location.
Julie described the experience as if their “house was on a parade,” with locals lining the route to watch.
The couple’s dedication to the renovation is evident.
They’ve invested about $95,000 so far, including the relocation costs.
Despite juggling the responsibilities of raising three children and Eddie’s job as a traveling nurse, they’re committed to completing the renovations.
Their goal? To move in by Thanksgiving and spend the holidays in their newly transformed home.
Their renovation journey isn’t just about creating a home for themselves. They’re also focused on supporting their community.
By hiring local companies for specific tasks, they aim to boost Lincoln’s economy.
Julie emphasized their motto of helping their town grow and supporting local businesses.
Julie and Eddie’s journey with the Dutch colonial house shows that love and dedication can breathe new life into something old and turn it into a cherished forever home.
See Julie and Eddie’s old home make its journey to its new location in the video below!