What was the first property that you bought?
It was a small two-bedroom terraced house in Leeds in 2006. It was nine months after we’d got married, and I was seven months pregnant. We were living with my husband’s family and this house was one street away, so every night after work he’d go over and do some work on it as it was in a bit of a state.
What changes did you make?
We kept a lot of it because we couldn’t afford to do much. So we painted everything but kept the woodchip wallpaper. We put new carpet down and new lino in the kitchen, but that was it. It just needed a really good clean.
We were there for a little over a year. My husband found a mouse in the house, and he’s very afraid of mice. So we put the house up for sale and sold it in six weeks.
We phoned the council, and they said: ‘You live in a terraced house, if we get rid of this mouse another one will come in, they’ll find a way through.’ My husband said that wasn’t happening so we bought a semi-detached house so at least the mice would only come through from one neighbour!
Where did you move to?
It was still in Leeds — but with a big kitchen and a garden which we hadn’t had before and by that time we had two sons.
The previous owner had put an extension on, but you could tell the kitchen had been designed by a man as the units were in the wrong places. There was a little nook with a unit in it which was pointless because you couldn’t do anything with it. But I was very grateful for that kitchen because it had a lot of space — it was when I first started baking.
What did you do to it?
We did a lot of work to the garden as there was a lot of building rubble in it. I was pregnant with my daughter and spent a summer fixing the garden, we put a vegetable patch in, returfed it and put a new shed in. We had oak trees and it was nice to see the kids climbing them.
Where are you living now?
In a new-build five-bedroom detached house in Milton Keynes. It’s closer to London for work. I’ve just decorated the living room. It has big French doors so I’ve painted one wall green and the rest a cookie dough colour. I’ve bought a little orange tree — he’s been on the brink of death a few times but I’ve managed to keep him alive.
What’s your kitchen like?
I had a new kitchen put in last year. I went for a curved art deco feel. The kitchen designer said people haven’t gone for units like that for a long time but I said I don’t care. It’s curvy and clean looking. I’ve got a ‘slide and hide’ oven like you have on Bake Off.
They’re expensive, but I’m short, so when I have an oven that’s raised off the ground I find myself falling into it when I open the oven door. With a ‘slide and hide’ the door slips under the base of the oven. It’s an amazing invention.
And I’ve got a boiling-water tap, which is the best thing we’ve bought. I’m impatient, so waiting for water to boil makes me frustrated — and now I’ve got it on tap.
Have you taken any sentimental items with you on your moves?
My dad used to go to charity shops quite a lot — he got me into it. He bought me two colanders when I was pregnant — a big one and a smaller one and he said: ‘That’s for you, and that’s for when the baby comes, so they can help you in the kitchen.’
All my kids have used it. If you’re feeding a family of five you can’t get enough into it to make it useful, but I can’t throw it away.
What would be your dream home?
I have Rightmove on my phone and put ‘maximum £3million’ in just to have a look at things I could never afford to buy. I do it with my sisters. In an ideal world I’d have a bigger kitchen because it’s my work and also we spend a lot of time in there. My kids do their homework in there. And I’d have a hot tub.
■ Nadiya Hussain, 33, won Bake Off in 2015. She has just launched her new homeware range, nadiyahussain.com
All about… Leeds
WITH a population of 785,000, the West Yorkshire city has moved on since the Industrial Revolution on which its original wealth was built. These days, it is home to game developer Rockstar Leeds, while Channel 4 will open a new headquarters there soon.
Leeds is also popular with visitors, who can admire the UK’s tallest mural, Nomad Clan’s Athena Rising, visit historic Harewood House or explore Yorkshire’s beautiful countryside. The average house price in Leeds is £192,530, while the majority of sales over the past year were semi-detached properties which, on average, sold for £200,339. Terraced homes fetched an average of £146,293 and flats sold for an average of £142,936.
In the past year, house prices in Leeds were five per cent up on the year before, and 13 per cent up on 2015 when they averaged at £170,628. rightmove.co.uk