Family bonds can trump almost anything, in this case an architecturally designed Orakei home from which wild horses couldn't normally drag owner Bill McDonald away.
Bill and his wife Sarah Stokes live here with their teenage children, Duncan and Sylvie, and cat Cinders. But they want Sarah's mum Kaye to live with them, so they are selling up.
Bill says the house was their dream home: "We knew as soon as we came through this place about two-and-a-half years ago we wanted it.
"We'd looked at many places. Many of them involved compromises after being renovated or extended, whereas this place has been so well thought out.
"You really notice that living here. It's a light and airy home with a great layout and a really private feeling."
The low maintenance nature of this 2006 cedar and weatherboard home was a big drawcard.
Rautara St is nicely elevated, and the house is flooded with light and has views to Rangitoto Island. Hedges and electronic security gates front the property. Two-off street parks bolster internal-access double garaging housing Bill and Duncan's motorcross bikes.
The two-storey home announces itself with horizontal cedar slats over big upper windows. It combines white weatherboards with some dark cedar cladding mainly along its western face.
The entry hallway, which passes an open-tread staircase with side slats, widens as it goes.
Wide Tasmanian oak floorboards continue through the open-plan kitchen-dining room.
The open-plan space steps down to both a lounge with gas fireplace and a family room with pool table, which can be closed off.
Both these living spaces have heated concrete floors and open through sliders to the deck with adjustable Louvretec roof.
The deck has a water feature and outdoor fireplace-barbeque and steps down to level rear grounds, where hedging surrounds lawn and a heated in-ground swimming pool with integrated spa.
"It's great outdoor living," Bill says. "Even in winter you'll often find us out there with the fire roaring."
The family put a Gaggenau oven and induction hob into the kitchen and its stone island.
They re-finished the Tasmanian oak floorboards, replaced all 270 or so lights with LEDs, and added solar heating to bolster the pool's gas heating.
Five radiator-like hydronic heating wall panels are around the house. Bill says: "They're set on timers and you get up in the morning in winter to a nice ambiance without any sort of blowing effect."
This level also contains a powder room, two bedrooms, the family bathroom, a laundry room and a storage room.
14 RAUTARA ST, ORAKEI
• 4 bedrooms, 2 bathroom, 2* parking spaces.
• Expression of Interest: Close 5pm Wed May 29.
• Contact: Roy Champtaloup, Ray White, 027 555 5557.
*+ 2 off-street