"I don't think our house is anything special, it's just our home," says Kelly Sinclair.

The judges on one of Scotland's most popular TV shows obviously don't agree describing the renovated detached stone cottage as "absolutely perfect".

Old Meldrum is featured in the new series of Scotland's Home of the Year which takes in the North East and Northern Isles in Monday's episode.

The Herald:

Michael Angus, Anna-Campbell Jones and Banjo Beale, are the team of design experts tasked with whittling down the stylish and one-of-a-kind properties for the fifth series' grand final on June 26.

One home is selected from three located in different regions of Scotland after the judges award points for architectural merit, distinctive design and original style.

"What I'm looking for in a home is bags of personality, care for the planet and that most important ingredient, love," says Campbell Jones, an interior designer.

The Sinclair family have lived in Old Meldrum, located in the village of the same name, for around ten years but the matriarch of the house admits that it wasn't love at first sight.

READ MORE: Scotland's Home of the Year returns with new Glasgow judge

"It was awful, I didn't want to buy it," she says.

"It was dark and all the woodwork was brown. I suppose it was of its time.

"I am always full of ideas, I really like houses and interiors so I've always got something up my sleeve."

"A lot of [the changes] were cosmetic.

The Herald:

"We put in new bathrooms and took down a bit of a wall in the living room and scullery area and the rest has really been painting and putting our own stamp on the place."

The ground floor of the cottage has a bedroom, two bathrooms and open-plan kitchen living room area. The first floor has the master bedroom, two further bedrooms and a family bathroom.

Her family owned a garage business so there are a few items that reference this including a retro petrol pump while the beer bottle top covered kitchen bar is a stylish focal point.

The Herald:

"We are pleased about that," she says.

"Before the extension was put on, it was quite a small house.

"We were sitting watching TV on a Wednesday evening and Scott asked what I wanted to do at the weekend.

"We decided to take the wall down.

"It is nice and has really opened up the space. 

READ MORE: Alison Rowat: Scotland's Home of the Year: What to expect.

"We are not rich people and I like a house to be homely and family-orientated and I like things to have a story."

She said she is also keen to repurpose objects and a footstool covered in old pairs of jeans which has a handy pocket for the remote control catches the eye of Anna-Campbell Jones.

She said: "It was my idea about 20 years ago. Instead of throwing them out, I always kept a box of jeans and this was what I had had in mind but you never get round to doing things.

The Herald:

"So when lockdown struck I got the footstool out and the denim and dropped it off at my mum's and she did it all for me.

"She just thinks it's awful but I love it."

However, the pièce de résistance is the huge back garden, which has been a labour of love for Scott.

"It was absolutely the most depressing place you've ever seen," laughs Mrs Sinclair.

"Our neighbours had a hedge that ran the whole length of the garden.

"We asked them if they wanted a hand to keep it in check and they said they would really like to get rid of it so Scott just came in with his digger one day, with no plan and it all sprouted from there."

The couple have three bars at Old Meldrum; one in the house, one at the back door and another at the bottom of the garden, known affectionately as 'Inn, Oot and Doon'.

"On a nice day, everyone congregates here," she says. 

READ MORE: One of Scotland's 'best kept' 16th century castles on the market for £8million 

Since the show, the couple have added a few cosy touches to the kitchen living area incorporating the fireplace from Kelly's family home and a wood-burning stove.

She says the decision to appear on the show was "completely driven" by her children. 

"It was all a bit of a whirlwind," she says.

"The kids were all very excited until they realised it all had to be tidied and they couldn't move anything."

Filming on SHOTY6 starts from the end of June and the filmmakers are looking for homeowners to apply to take part. 

Details on how to apply can be found at www.bbc.co.uk/shoty . Applicants should include contact details, a brief description of the home and a few pictures and only primary residences can apply to take part.