This whole house hunting thing is a bit of circus, isn’t it? I didn’t realise just what I was getting into until it was well underway. It seems that if I’m not spending my weekend attending yet another fruitless auction, it’s having an offer rejected or hearing from the council that there’s no town water connection.

Something I’m realising is that I’m probably going to have to settle for less than perfection. I should have expected this to begin with, really – it’s not like I have limitless cash to drop on this thing. Having said that, I’m becoming all the better at detecting which features are non-negotiable for me.

One such feature is the kitchen. It’s got to be light-filled and spacious, with highly functional organising features and smart storage solutions. Ideally, it will have a gas stove, ambient lighting and an island worktop as well. Seeing so many pokey, badly designed kitchens lately has led me to realise that these things are quite important to me.

That being the case, I realise that I may have to purchase a house with a sub-par kitchen, and proceed to install the dream features myself – by which I mean, do so with the help of a certified kitchen designer. Melbourne readers, have any of you had a killer kitchen makeover lately? Who did it for you? I’d like to start gathering a few quotes so that I have some idea of how much dough I’ll need to have in reserve, should this scenario come to pass.

I guess part of the issue is that I really love older houses, yet I’m wanting on a contemporary kitchen designer. There are, of course, examples of this combination on the market – people often carry out kitchen renovations in older homes. In my price range, though, you’re more likely to come by a shonky DIY carpentry job or suspicious-looking bit of plumbing than you are a stylish and functional work space.

Regardless, I’m determined to have my cake and eat it too – or at least have a beautiful bench top to put it on.