About catherine
Catherine is a CPA-turned-creative entrepreneur. She is the founder of Beginning in the Middle. an interior designer, photographer, writer, and business schemer.  She loves being cozy at home, miniature everything, and has a not-so-secret dream of living on an island one day.
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Before & After

Hello, Franklinton!



If you haven’t heard, we officially own our very first investment property!  It’s a brick duplex in an up-and-coming neighborhood called Franklinton, and it’s full of many, many fun (and not so fun) projects that we’ll be sharing with you in the coming months.

There are some really great things about both sides of the house – high ceilings, unfinished basements and attics (Bryan can stand in both!), original trim, original hardwood floors, and fireplaces.  Each side is 1500 sq ft, and has 3 bedrooms/1 bathroom.  The catch is that it’s been owned for almost 20 years by landlords who didn’t take care of it (and that’s saying it nicely), so it needs a TON of work.  Our plan is to fix up both sides, live in one and rent out the other to offset the cost of the mortgage.

We’re excited about being in Franklinton because it has been getting lots of attention from city planners and investors as the next big neighborhood in Columbus.  It’s directly west of Downtown, and a 5-10 min ride to work for both Bryan and me!  We can even bike if we want to.  Several large companies have bought out old buildings and have made plans to develop them, and new bars/restaurants, breweries and coffee shops are slowly opening up.  The down side is that the neighborhood is still very much in transition.  A typical block in Franklinton has a mixture of brand new, completely redone houses, abandoned/boarded up houses, and houses that are occupied (many rented) by low income families.  With that comes more crime and drug issues than other more established areas.  But with time, we’re hopeful that it will turn around and are excited about the potential that this neighborhood has.

The best thing about fixing up this house is that we’ll be part of the revitalization happening in Franklinton.  Just in talking with the neighbors, we know that putting some love into this house and making sure we have responsible tenants in there will have a big impact on our block.  Our work will go beyond just making the house look nice, which is something we can be proud of.

We’ll share lots of “before” photos soon, and some more details on what we want to do with the space (hopefully this weekend!).

Until next time…

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  1. […] been another eventful week over here at the new duplex.  Last week, we demo’d the majority of the house except for the kitchen and bathroom.  This […]

  2. […] back, friends.  I hope you are having a wonderful week!  We’ve been staying very busy at the house and actually have some good news this time.  Our kitchen layout is finalized, cabinets are […]

  3. […] love that the outside of our duplex is brick, but finding the same brick easily accessible on the inside felt like we were hitting […]

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Catherine & Bryan Williamson moved from NYC to Columbus, OH in 2013.  Beginning in the Middle is a journal of the couple's design and renovation projects, real estate investment and Airbnb hosting journey, travel, and other life happenings.



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I grew up in New Jersey and always had a dream of living in New York.  There was something about the energy of the city that drew me inOur journey started unexpectedly in 2012, when we decided to make a big move from New York to Columbus. The glamour of climbing the corporate ladder was wearing off, and we knew that renting an expensive small apartment and dealing with crowded subways everyday was not going to work forever. We wanted to start creating something for ourselves, and although we didn’t know exactly what that something was, we knew NYC wasn’t the place for it.

We decided on Columbus because Bryan grew up here, and we were intrigued by all of the development going on in the downtown area at the time. We drove through many of the neighborhoods and admired the boarded up old houses, most of which were built in the early 1900s, and started dreaming about the things we could do here.

I'm Catherine, and I'm the founder of Beginning in the Middle.

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