News

Maxi Bader buys a house and loses it all at 19

Maxi Bader is dealing with her brand new house in Elphinstone Street being inundated with flash flooding.
Maxi Bader is dealing with her brand new house in Elphinstone Street being inundated with flash flooding. Sharyn O'Neill ROK300113sbader5

TEARS glisten in Maxi Bader's clear green eyes as she looks around the dream home she moved into only hours before floodwater ravaged it.  

Today it sits empty.  

But in the 19-year-old's mind she can see herself last Thursday, organising the new, matching furniture she had lovingly hand-picked for each inch of the Elphinstone St, Rockhampton, house.  

After four years of saving up for a deposit for her very own home, the Biloela girl achieved that dream five months ago.   Four months later and she paid off up to $20,000 worth of new furniture.

 And at midday on Thursday she called her mum Karen, who still lives in Biloela, excitedly describing each piece of furniture and her dinner plans for her first guests.  

But on Thursday night she saw her dreams sinking in brown, muddied floodwater and debris.

Maxi Bader is dealing with her brand new house in Elphinstone Street being inundated with flash flooding. Photo Sharyn O'Neill / The Morning Bulletin
Maxi Bader is dealing with her brand new house in Elphinstone Street being inundated with flash flooding. Photo Sharyn O'Neill / The Morning Bulletin Sharyn O'Neill ROK300113sbader4

Her next phone call to her mum caused Karen to jump in her car with Maxi's younger brother and his girlfriend and immediately make the three-hour drive to Rockhampton.  

When flash flooding submerged two nearby gullies on Rockhampton's second wettest day on record it gushed into Maxi's home.

The house is not in the Q100 and is not set to go under during floods, so Maxi had no warning.  

Like many people across the region, ex-tropical Cyclone Oswald caught Maxi unawares.  

When water first began rising from the torrential rain Maxi rushed to Mitre 10 to buy a shovel and sandbags, hoping to dig a drain to divert the water away from her house.

By the time Maxi returned home the water was so high and running so fast it almost knocked her off her feet and it later dinted her garage door.   But she refused to leave her new home.  

Wading out into her front yard, alone and with no one in Rockhampton to call on, the young girl screamed for help. Maxi's neighbour yelled at her to get out of the water.  

But the Biloela girl who had worked two jobs at one point to save up to buy her own home and own car wouldn't leave without a fight.  

Neighbours, strangers and old family friends turned up at Maxi's home to help her remove everything they could.

By the time Karen arrived Maxi was emotionally spent.

Maxi collapsed and couldn't stop crying.  

It was only her fourth time in the house that had become a sanctuary from her job working on the Miles to Curtis Island gas pipeline.  

Maxi works 28 days straight, then has a nine day break.  

Now, she's not sure if she feels safe enough to stay in the house for even one of her days off.  

But after being raised by a single mum who built their family home with her own hands and the help of a builder over three years, Maxi had been taught better than to let floodwater keep her down.  

"My mum had to start from scratch and I didn't want to be like that," Maxi said.  

"I always wanted to be financially secure."  

Despite it all, she can now see the humour through her pain.  

Maxi knows she's one-of-a-kind - even if it's for the wrong reason.  

"No one else can say 'I bought a house and lost it at 19'," Maxi joked.  

"I've given up a lot of my social life, it's just backfired. But I think I'd be bored any other way. The house keeps giving me projects - I just don't like what it's given me."  

Maxi's plan to study veterinary science this year is up in the air and she's on antibiotics after a cut on her foot became infected by floodwater.

Maxi Bader is dealing with her brand new house in Elphinstone Street being inundated with flash flooding. Photo Sharyn O'Neill / The Morning Bulletin
Maxi Bader is dealing with her brand new house in Elphinstone Street being inundated with flash flooding. Photo Sharyn O'Neill / The Morning Bulletin Sharyn O'Neill ROK300113sbader3

An assessor also told her and Karen on Wednesday that everything under 1.2m had to be removed and replaced - that means the entire bathroom and kitchen.  

She will also have to rebuild her fence and completely re-do her new yard.  

Maxi had partially insured the house, but as she had just received her furniture she had not had time to organise contents insurance.  

But when it comes to Maxi - nothing's over until she says it is.  

"It will be all right," she said. "I'll fix it - I'll save up again."  

The family is discussing building a retaining wall around the house, but said they would have to speak with neighbours because they don't want the water to be funnelled into their yards.

Topics:  editors picks floods 2013 rockhampton



10 best street art spots to take an Insta selfie

IF YOU are in need of a few trendy new Instagram snaps, then get your phone and selfie-stick ready and head to Brisbane.

Theatre royalty graces Brisbane stage

Don't miss Charles Edwards in this incredible theatre performance.

WHEN acting royalty comes to town, you sit up and take notice.

Don’t go chasing waterfalls…find them on these drives!

The Scenic Rim is just one place nearby that you'll love.

BRISBANE isn’t all bright lights and city slickers.

Your boots are made for walking these tours

Brisbane Greeters tours are a great way to learn the local history of the city.

YOU don’t need a bike or bus for a seriously good tour of Brisbane.

Discover Brisbane’s laneway gems

Brisbane's laneways will surprise you.

NOT all of Brisbane City is as it seems…

Drink where the cool kids do this summer

There are a bunch of new bars open in Brisbane, make sure you're there!

CHECK out these new funky bars.

Science Festival seriously awesome

Don't miss the World Science Festival Brisbane!

CALLING everyone who wants to see something totally cool.

Advisor puts Rocky on radar for defence specialist's new regional HQ

Crew Commander Lance Corporal Andrew Jackson of 2 Cavalry Regiment in Darwin guides an Australian Light Armoured Vehicle (ASLAV) onto a flatbed truck prior to transport from Defence Service Group to Rockhampton.

Push to get military giant to set up base in Rockhampton

How this couple remain madly in love after 65 years of marriage

Beryl and Clifford Perkins have celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary.

The love between this couple is still well and truly alive

Local Partners

Star style at the Oscars 2017 red carpet

Oscars 2017: Red Carpet Dresses and Outfits — Best Dressed Celebrities.

Oscars to be politically charged

In this March 8, 2015, file photo, Jimmy Kimmel arrives at the 32nd Annual Paleyfest held at The Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. Kimmel, who has twice hosted the Emmy Awards, will make his Oscars debut on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017.

Oscars 2017: Live Coverage of the 89th Academy Awards.

Married At First Sight couple flouts the rules

Sean and Susan in a scene from Married At First Sight.

ONE couple is openly flouting the rules of Married At First Sight.

The one film that could beat La La Land

Mahershala Ali and Alex R Hibbert in a scene from the movie Moonlight.

OSCARS 2017 predictions: Who will win on the big night?

Actor Bill Paxton has died aged 61

Bill Paxton at the premiere of "Captain Phillips".

American actor and director Bill Paxton has died at 61 due

Theatre royalty graces Brisbane stage

Don't miss Charles Edwards in this incredible theatre performance.

WHEN acting royalty comes to town, you sit up and take notice.

Un-American tale makes Lion weakest link in Oscars line-up

Dev Patel in a scene from the movie Lion.

PSYCHOLOGY researchers find US films most likely to win at Oscars.

Mackay's property market climbing like a Rocket Man

Renewed confidence in Mackay means more homes are being snapped up by those eager to plant their roots in the region.

There's movement in the real estate sector and it's all positive.

Mining downturn hitting mum and dad investors

18 Yeates Street, Moranbah sold for $135,000 in December, after being repossessed by a bank. The owners bought for $545,000 in August, 2011.

The economy still has two speeds, but with a painful twist

'Why we drove 800km to buy a treehouse with a disco ball'

The new owners have planned a few updates, but will stick with much of the original design.

A couple travelled almost 800km for the home of their dreams.

The trick homeowners are using to buy more properties

Chantelle Subritzky leaves her home each week for Airbnb guests.

Queenslanders are going down this path to help pay their mortgages

Stunning home blends South Pacific beauty with Orient style

Immaculate residence with two outdoor living areas

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!