Devon Escape to the Country


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It's the bane of people's lives, that daily commute to work,

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but here you could well commute by sea tractor! It was invented in 1969 by Robert Jackson

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in exchange for a case of champagne. So which county has extravagant inventors and spectacular vehicles?

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Join me as we set sail for another Escape To The Country.

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Today we help a couple swap the Staffordshire suburbs for retirement by the sea.

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Love the pool. I'd be there all day.

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'We'll checkout some amazing million-pound coastal homes.'

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Very good, very nice.

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-'And will today's mystery house hit the right note?'

-Oh, wow! That's so nice.

-The wow factor.

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Today, I'm on the south coast of Devon making the journey from the mainland to Burgh Island.

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At low tide it's a 250-metre walk, but at high tide the only way to access the island is in style

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using this sea tractor. All very exciting. It's a form of transport unique to this part of the world

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and it brings new meaning to the word cruising.

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For nearly 80 years, Burgh Island has been a retreat for the rich and famous

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seeking privacy and solitude. Noel Coward, Agatha Christie and The Beatles all escaped to the hotel

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and a couple of Mrs Christie's novels were based around its shores.

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Burgh Island may be the jewel in south Devon's crown,

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but the entire county is a scenic gateway for holidaymakers and homebuyers,

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all looking for their slice of coast and countryside.

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Sandwiched between Torbay and Plymouth, the South Hams is one of the most rural seaside regions.

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Extensive farmland almost tumbles into the 56 miles of stunning coastline.

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For those with relaxation in mind, there are over 23 beaches to enjoy.

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Countless villages, winding estuaries and narrow lanes make up this beautiful landscape

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and with so much sea on the doorstep it's an absolute Mecca for water sport enthusiasts and yachtsmen.

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When you consider that most people who live on this coast own a boat or two

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and that 42% of the properties are either second or holiday homes, it costs to live here.

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A mere square foot of property will set you back upwards of £1,000.

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Add a sea view or direct access to the water and you double or triple your budget.

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But let's put the big bucks aside. whether it's a coastal castle or country cottage,

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there's plenty of variety to be had in this county for all budgets. Take a look at these.

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If living by the sea is at the top of your wish list, how about a boathouse in Dartmouth?

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It comes with two two-bedroom apartments with open-plan living spaces for those estuary views.

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It's not a massive property, but proximity to the water comes at a cost.

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This will set you back a whopping £1.3 million.

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Head inland and you'll get a lot more for your money.

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This four-bedroom thatched cottage oozes character in every room.

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It's set in 1.5 acres of land. The rural views are as impressive, but come at half the price -

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£550,000.

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Or for the even more modest £340,000, how about this three-bedroom Victorian house

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situated near the village of Down St Mary?

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It's beautifully restored and comes with a farmhouse kitchen and a spacious garden, too.

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As we've seen, there are plenty of tempting properties on offer,

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so let's meet today's buyers who are ready to drop anchor and take the plunge in South Devon.

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Busy restaurateur and property developer Pritpal, and wife Ruby,

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have lived in their six-bedroom house in Newcastle under Lyme for 25 years.

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-I fell in love with this house. Ruby was away at the time. I said, "I've found our dream house."

-Yeah.

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Within, I think, six weeks we were in.

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Since then we have altered this house probably 300 times!

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It was a bungalow, now it's a house.

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With retirement on the horizon and three grown-up daughters gone,

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they've decided it's the perfect time to do the same and have set their sights on South Devon.

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We'd like a house overlooking the sea, so that in the morning we could walk on the beach

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-and just enjoy it. The house we can alter.

-Yeah.

-But the view...

-The view is important.

-The priority.

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So proximity to the coast will be all-important, but what else are they looking for?

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We want to downsize. Some of the rooms we don't use.

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-So it's best to have a smaller house.

-It has to have probably a minimum of three bedrooms.

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-And...

-I would like a big kitchen. Definitely.

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The biggest no-nos are beams. Oh, I hate beams.

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-I don't like dark areas.

-We like to have a modern house.

-Yeah.

-With lots of glass.

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So it's not the typical character home we're hunting for.

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But are Pritpal and Ruby after a typically large country garden?

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Even though we're downsizing the house, one thing I don't want to do is downsize the garden.

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We love entertaining people. We have lots of friends and family and we have a barbecue

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and a bouncy castle for the children. We'd like to do that.

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But it's not just garden parties...

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This is our entertainment room. The whole family loves this room. We get together here for parties.

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Yeah. We've got a cooker here and sink and mini bar.

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This is the sort of thing we'd be looking for when we move. An entertainment area.

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And with what looks like a pub in their house, I've got the picture.

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These two really like to party, but surely they have some outdoor pursuits planned?

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We'd love to do sailing. We'll definitely be learning to swim.

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-And definitely be doing lots of walking.

-Yeah.

-Won't we?

-Walking to the pubs.

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-Yes!

-I quite like that. That's my favourite part.

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As a property developer, Pritpal is no stranger to doing up houses. Their dream home needn't be perfect.

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This is my favourite room. I've designed it the way I want it.

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And I'm looking forward to something similar in my new house,

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decorated the way I want it to look.

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Pritpal and Ruby don't have to sell. How much money do they want to splash out on their coastal retreat?

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Our budget for the new property is £750,000

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and we're willing to go up to £1,000,000.

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Pritpal and Ruby are cash buyers, which makes this an exciting hunt.

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Their budget is huge, but their demands quite modest.

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They're after a detached property with three bedrooms, two reception rooms, a large kitchen diner,

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a space to entertain 30 or so guests. Yeah, 30 - that's large1

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And a spacious garden to enjoy long, hot summer barbecues.

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But - and there is a but - they're after sea views.

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And in this county that comes at a premium.

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Since Pritpal and Ruby both want the seaside and the countryside right on their doorstep,

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we'll focus today's property search between Bigbury and Dartmouth,

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South Devon's most rural stretch of coastline.

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We've lined up three fantastic homes for them to view, but I won't reveal the price until they look around.

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And then, just to shake things up, the last house will be a mystery house and a real challenge for them,

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but not in the way you might think.

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-Pritpal, Ruby, welcome to South Devon. How are you?

-Good.

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First of all, a big thank you for the budget! A big budget always means lots of fun

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and your demands are quite modest, apart from the fact that you want this sea view.

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-Yeah.

-You know that'll cost you?

-Nothing is cheap nowadays.

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-Have you looked round this area?

-On the internet, but that's not what you can see for real.

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Devon is a beautiful part of the world. We've been to Torquay, but we haven't been here.

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-We've got some wonderful properties, including the mystery one. Shall we get on with it?

-Yes.

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Sounds easy enough,

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but they want an ultra-modern house with sea views

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in one of Devon's most rural and expensive areas.

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Thatched cottages and character homes are no problem here.

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Modern mansions are slightly more elusive, so even with £1,000,000,

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this could be quite a challenging property search.

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You don't seem to be bothered about the finer points of the house. You know that it can be change?

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Yeah. The property can be altered.

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We have done a lot of construction work to our own house to make it the way we want.

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But the one thing you can't actually do anything to is the view.

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-Once you have a view and the land, you can make the house to your own liking.

-You can, yeah.

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Well, sea views won't be a problem with our first property.

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We're heading east to Strete Gate, which overlooks the spectacular Start Bay.

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This really is a coastal retreat as there's nothing much here bar miles of beach at Slapton Sands

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and the nature reserve.

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But just a 10-minute walk away is the pretty hilltop village of Strete.

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I'm sure they'll be happy to make the hike for the pub and restaurant.

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The property we're viewing is just a stone's throw from the beach.

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-Not a bad location?

-No, quite good.

-So far, so good.

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-What about that sort of blue tinge at the front?

-I like that.

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-Know what it is? A swimming pool.

-I'm not really keen on a swimming pool outside. We can always...

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-Fill it up!

-No! You can't! Why don't you like a swimming pool outside?!

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-Because we've got the ocean!

-But you like the look of it?

-I do.

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Come on.

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'I can't believe they'd want to fill in this swimming pool! As property developers,

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'they'll have some design ideas for the interiors of this '50s house,

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'but in terms of the space and decor, it won't be too big a project for them.'

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-Come in through these snazzy doors.

-Yeah.

-They concertina out.

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It opens out the whole courtyard and kitchen.

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Even if you were cooking in here, entertaining there, you'd still be part of it. Come on in.

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-Mmm.

-I quite like this.

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-It's just like our kitchen.

-It is!

-Granite work surfaces, electric oven.

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Also the oil-fired range. To the left, a totally private annex, built by the current owners.

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-It's got a bedroom, a bathroom, so for guests ideal, really.

-Yeah, ideal.

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-Into your dining room...

-Mm.

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-Yeah, it's quite nice, isn't it?

-Quite nice.

-The ceilings are dated.

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I quite like that. It's the original '50s ceilings.

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Looking through the cosmetic, what do you make of the space? I love that it opens to the kitchen.

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Yeah, I like that. It's all one, the kitchen and the dining room.

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You've got another formal dining room and then the living room.

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-I'll take you through. Come on.

-Yes.

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Pritpal, let me tell you, you're going to love this ceiling(!)

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-Yeah, same ceiling again.

-What do you make of this formal living space?

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-It's big. It's big, isn't it?

-A reasonable size, yes.

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'Ruby and Pritpal seem a bit underwhelmed by this drawing room, but there's plenty more to come.

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'And let's not forget this is a downsize for them.'

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This is a study at the moment. Could be a TV room. And then this conservatory.

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-Oh, yeah.

-Which will be a massive, massive sun trap.

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-South-facing. It's going to get the sun all the time.

-Yeah.

-You feel a bit warm.

-You do.

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And we've got these double doors so you can open them up as well.

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And I like the view from here - the garden, the grass.

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'I think Pritpal and Ruby are warming to this house. Let's hope that continues upstairs.

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'There are four bedrooms in all.'

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So, one of your bedrooms.

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-Dual aspect.

-Mm. It's a bit small, isn't it?

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-Is it?

-Mm. It's a small bedroom.

-The master bedroom is en suite,

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so three bedrooms are serviced by one bathroom, which is just there. Do you want to have a look?

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-That's nice. It's a small bathroom.

-Well, yes.

-It's got a shower at the back.

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-That's quite good.

-Yeah.

-I'll show you the master bedroom.

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So we cross over from one side of the house to the other, in a way.

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Two more bedrooms here, almost identical in size.

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And then...the master bedroom.

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-Ah, right.

-Mm-hm.

-I expected it to be slightly bigger.

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-It seems a bit compact for me.

-OK. What about for you?

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It'll do. I just need a bed!

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That's a typical man expression! "I just need somewhere to lay down my head at the end of the evening."

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-Is that the bathroom?

-It is.

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-Now this is a good size.

-Mm, it is a good size.

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-Almost bigger than the bedroom!

-It is.

-You've got loads of storage space.

-Lots of storage.

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'So lots of space for towels, but it's sea views Pritpal and Ruby are really after.

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'This house delivers.'

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Wow.

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-That is good, isn't it?

-I personally would probably cut the trees

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-and plant them at the back...

-You can prune them, can't you?

-Yes.

-Then you can see the sea.

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-But as far as wanting to have a view of water, it doesn't get much better.

-It doesn't. Very nice.

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-Fancy seeing the gardens?

-Yes.

-Yes.

-Got the energy?

-Yeah.

-OK, come on.

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'I'd say that's a thumbs up to the view. Let's see if the garden will have the same impact.

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'There's around one acre, complete with a pretty lawned area and its very own paddock.'

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-Quite a distance from the house now.

-Yes.

-This is your paddock area.

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-They're growing potatoes. There's this huge wooden structure.

-There's a lot of potential.

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With all that in mind, let's go back to the front lawn.

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-And you can think about how much it's worth.

-Right.

-Right.

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'They certainly seem to see the pros with this property, but will they be impressed by the price?'

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Let's sit down here, shall we? You can't ask for a better view.

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-No.

-So, Ruby, how much is it worth?

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I think with the location and...considering everything,

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-I think 995.

-995.

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-Pritpal?

-Em, I think I quite agree with Ruby.

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-I think, yeah, round about a million pounds.

-A million pounds.

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I can tell you the whole thing - swimming pool, lake, sea, house - £1,250,000.

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It's been on the market for a year and a half, though. So is it something you'd make an offer on?

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-Em, I certainly like to think so.

-Yeah...

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But not with the way the house is.

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-Something needs to be done.

-Things need to be changed. If the price came down, we would consider.

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-Good.

-Especially thinking of the current market.

-Yes.

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I...

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-I like the view.

-No, I do.

-You can't put a value to it.

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-Go and have another look around. There's plenty to take in.

-Yes.

-The grounds, house, take your time.

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-OK.

-I'll wait for you by the front. I'll be by the pool!

-OK!

-I've always wanted to say that.

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There are four reception rooms, four bedrooms, a conservatory and a separate guest annex.

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This comes pretty close to delivering everything they asked for and, after 18 months,

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there will be some room for manoeuvre on the price.

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The external is superb. The sea.

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This is just perfect.

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The location is fantastic. The kitchen is good, swimming pool.

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-The kitchen is all right.

-I like it.

-Nice and bright.

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-It's got a lot of light.

-Yes. And the open door as well.

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In summer time that would be nice to sit outside with a barbecue.

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Ah, perfect timing! My work is done.

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-Have you seen enough?

-Yes.

-Come on. Plenty more to see.

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'As restaurateurs, Pritpal and Ruby will be delighted to know that the South Hams aren't just famed

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'for cream teas, but also a gastronomic delicacy - the Bigbury Bay oyster.

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'So, acting as official taster, I've come to the Avon Estuary to meet oyster farmer Richard Marsh.'

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-Richard, how are you?

-Hi, Aled.

-I've come to give you a hand.

-Fantastic.

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-Well, we need to put some chest waders on.

-OK, so where exactly are the oysters now?

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I've got three areas. West Bank is along down here, then East Bank on the opposite side of the river

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and then the south is from that pink buoy right down to the end.

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-How many oysters?

-About 300,000.

-300,000 oysters?!

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-It's a lot of oysters.

-Wow! We don't have to get them all out today?

-Just a couple of thousand.

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Richard is an urban escape success story himself. He moved here six years ago from London

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'and took over the oyster bed, learning his trade as he went.'

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-What sort of lifestyle is it?

-Fantastic. You can see where we are.

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-No sitting on the Tube going into London any more.

-You don't miss it?!

-Not on days like today, no!

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-Shall we get on with it, then?

-Yeah, let's go for it.

-Brilliant.

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'The oysters here aren't native to Devon. They're Pacific oysters brought in from a hatchery.

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'They're matured here for 2-4 years and the location makes them special.

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'The combination of sea water with the fresh water from Dartmoor creates a perfect feeding ground

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'for the oysters, and that results in higher meat content and a unique nutty flavour.'

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-So these are almost ready to come out?

-Yeah, these are.

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-They're pretty much fully grown.

-What do we do?

-Turn the bags.

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So grab the bag, turn it on its side,

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and then give it a little shake like that.

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That's just knocking off the new growth so they get a nice, deep body instead of going flat.

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'This is backbreaking work! Richard has over 30 tons of oysters.'

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-Now I've helped you a bit, I wouldn't mind tasting them.

-I've got some on the quay for you.

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-Fantastic.

-Let's go.

-'Oysters are fantastic for vitamins and minerals.

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'Just six a day would more than fulfil your daily intake of iron, copper, zinc and calcium,

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'but there's an art to eating them.'

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-First of all, you have to pour away the liquor because that's the very salty part.

-Right.

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Then you have to sever the muscle underneath, turn it over, so it's loose.

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Then you stroke the oyster and it will produce a secondary liquor.

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I've never done that before.

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-I've eaten oysters loads of times.

-A squeeze of lemon...

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and it's ready to eat.

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So the best way is to suck into the mouth from that direction,

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then you'll compress the oyster with your tongue to the roof of your mouth where it'll start to dissolve.

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After a few seconds, you get left with the muscly part. Give that a chew. That's where the sweetness is.

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Once you've found that, you swallow and you just get the most amazing after-taste of the ocean

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that invigorates your whole body.

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God, that's fantastic. That's awesome.

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-Wow, yeah!

-You really get the sweetness and the after-taste will keep coming.

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Thanks. It's been fantastic.

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Good luck with the business. It doesn't sound like you need it. You've got the luck here.

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I feel the luckiest man on days like this, doing this for a living.

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-Thanks so much.

-Nice to have met you.

-And you too.

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As the sun sets over the beautiful South Devon coast,

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our first day of house-hunting is over.

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'Pritpal and Ruby want to retire from busy lives in Staffordshire

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'to relocate to the seaside in South Devon.

0:23:200:23:23

'They have up to £1 million to spend on a three to four-bedroomed modern house with sea views.

0:23:230:23:29

'We've shown them one house with wow factor, but they had plans for it.'

0:23:290:23:34

-I'm not really keen on having a swimming pool outside the house. We can always...

-Fill it up.

0:23:340:23:40

'There's plenty more to come to get their creative juices flowing.'

0:23:400:23:44

-I don't think I would have these here.

-I'd knock these down.

0:23:440:23:47

'But will today's mystery house finally deliver?'

0:23:470:23:51

I love it. This is exactly what we're looking for.

0:23:510:23:54

'Next we're heading to the outskirts of the village of Malborough,

0:23:560:24:00

'a couple of miles from Salcombe.

0:24:000:24:02

'Malborough is set in the heart of rural farmland and is home to two quaint pubs, a couple of restaurants

0:24:020:24:09

'and some stunning churches, but it's sun-worshipping that Pritpal and Ruby have in mind

0:24:090:24:14

'and they won't have far to go.

0:24:140:24:17

'Beautiful Hope Cove beach is just two and a half miles away.

0:24:170:24:21

'They can either drive or walk the beautiful South West Coast Path.

0:24:210:24:25

'And there's refreshment once they get here. But beach life will have to wait as we have a house to view

0:24:250:24:31

'that's just back in Malborough.'

0:24:310:24:34

So, Ruby, what do you reckon?

0:24:340:24:37

-It's a nice property.

-Late Georgian, you've got the triple garage.

0:24:370:24:41

You've also got the little annexe room there. It's got a bedroom, toilet.

0:24:410:24:47

-And you've got this building here.

-What's in there?

-Games room.

0:24:470:24:50

-You like your games room.

-Yeah.

-It's really nicely done.

0:24:500:24:54

'This house dates from the 1800s

0:24:540:24:56

'and has been extended and beautifully refurbished in the last ten years.

0:24:560:25:02

'It comes with space and style, but will Ruby and Pritpal like it?

0:25:020:25:06

'Your guess is as good as mine.'

0:25:060:25:08

-Ah!

-This is your hallway. Off the hallway, you've got a little study.

0:25:080:25:13

-I quite like these very old slate or quarry tiles.

-Flagstone flooring.

-I like those.

-Let's move through.

0:25:130:25:19

'They like the flagstone floor. Could this mean they're leaning towards more character?'

0:25:190:25:25

-Come on through to what I guess is the most important room.

-Ah!

0:25:250:25:29

-It's not very big, is it?

-Do you think it's too small?

0:25:300:25:34

-I think it's too small.

-It's big enough to cook in, isn't it?

-It's practical.

-Yes.

0:25:340:25:39

It's OK for a couple, I think.

0:25:390:25:42

Let me show you the dining room.

0:25:420:25:44

-Yeah...

-I know what you're gonna say. Too small?

0:25:480:25:52

-It is small.

-But you are downsizing, aren't you?

0:25:520:25:55

-Yes, but at the same time, we want to entertain.

-Right.

0:25:550:25:59

'I know Ruby likes to entertain around 30 people at a time.

0:25:590:26:03

'Although this room may not be big enough, there's just the thing at the back of the house.'

0:26:030:26:09

-I have to say this is where I'd spend all of my time.

-Yeah.

0:26:090:26:13

-Yeah, this is a bit more like it.

-This is good.

-Lovely, isn't it?

0:26:130:26:18

What a great place for a party!

0:26:180:26:20

-Absolutely.

-I'm already starting to think that we probably could move that kitchen out of there.

-Yeah.

0:26:200:26:28

-And bring it here.

-Bring it outside. Probably have a doorway where the window is.

0:26:280:26:34

And people can walk through. There's lots of things you can do here.

0:26:340:26:39

I think any property we move to, there will be our personal changes to it.

0:26:390:26:44

-He's not happy unless he's knocking down a wall.

-Not doing this to it either.

0:26:440:26:49

-But I think this is just superb.

-I think it's fantastic. I really like this.

0:26:490:26:55

'These two aren't short of vision, but they might be happy with the next room just the way it is.'

0:26:550:27:01

-The running theme, the floor.

-Oh, yes.

-Through the downstairs space.

0:27:010:27:05

-Hmm.

-Yeah. This is nice.

-Yeah, I like this size.

0:27:050:27:09

-I'm getting the impression that you like this house.

-We do like it.

0:27:090:27:13

That part, we weren't that keen, but now...

0:27:130:27:16

Yeah, walking around, we can see a lot of positives.

0:27:160:27:21

'It looks like we're on a roll. Now let's hope upstairs won't disappoint.

0:27:210:27:27

'It shouldn't. It comes complete with three bedrooms, including two double guest bedrooms,

0:27:270:27:33

'one of which is used as a sitting room, and there's a guest bathroom.'

0:27:330:27:37

This is your master bedroom.

0:27:370:27:39

-Oh, right.

-It's quite nice.

-Yeah, it's good.

0:27:400:27:45

This is just the sleeping part of it. The current owners have knocked through two or three rooms,

0:27:450:27:51

-so it's actually a vast space. Follow me.

-All right, OK.

0:27:510:27:55

This is your dressing area.

0:27:570:27:59

Lots of storage.

0:27:590:28:01

-I don't think I would have these here.

-In the middle.

-In the middle.

0:28:010:28:06

-I would probably knock these down completely.

-No way?

-Yes.

0:28:060:28:11

Come on, Pritpal, you wouldn't(!)

0:28:110:28:14

-Yeah.

-I'd have the bed in the middle somewhere.

-So you'd make it a very long room?

-Yes.

0:28:140:28:19

-I'd make it big as one.

-Yeah.

-You've also got an en-suite. Come and have a look.

-Oh, OK.

0:28:190:28:25

You can't say this is too small.

0:28:260:28:28

Oh, no, I like this.

0:28:280:28:31

-I think we would have a bigger window to let more light in.

-Right. Well, let's not dwell here.

0:28:310:28:37

Plenty more to see. Let me squeeze past you.

0:28:370:28:40

'The entire loft space has been converted, but there's a wooden theme with a fair few beams,

0:28:400:28:47

'so what will Ruby make of it?'

0:28:470:28:49

-It's a study.

-If you want open-plan, I give you open-plan!

0:28:490:28:54

-Yeah, but...

-Oh!

-HE SIGHS

0:28:540:28:57

-This is how a building stays up.

-I know that, but I don't like the beams.

0:28:570:29:02

-Not even in a loft space?

-No, I don't like loft spaces.

0:29:020:29:05

-I get suffocated.

-It could be a study for me. I could have this as an office.

-Yeah.

-He's loving this.

0:29:050:29:12

-Yeah, he is.

-This could be an ideal place for a bar.

-For a bar?

-Yeah.

-Hmm.

0:29:120:29:17

'So that's the drinks cabinet sorted,

0:29:180:29:21

'but Ruby and Pritpal could be having pool parties with this property.'

0:29:210:29:26

I love the pool. I'd be there all day.

0:29:260:29:29

-I'd be with you.

-Would you?

-Who's gonna do the cooking?

0:29:290:29:33

-Forget the cooking!

-It's so pretty everywhere you look.

0:29:330:29:36

-Very pretty.

-You've got the shed there. I've never seen such a pretty shed, the pergola, nice decking.

0:29:360:29:43

-The barbecue area.

-The barbecue area, yes.

0:29:430:29:46

-You've got a vegetable patch down there. Not that you'd care cos you won't be cooking.

-No.

0:29:460:29:52

I quite like to do the gardening. I like to get my hands in the mud.

0:29:520:29:56

-Saving money already!

-Yeah, you are.

-Growing your own vegetables.

0:29:560:30:00

-It's a great garden.

-Great. Absolutely wonderful.

0:30:000:30:04

You've got a little pond there.

0:30:040:30:06

-Can you see?

-Oh, gosh.

-Shall we take a walk down there?

-Yes.

0:30:060:30:11

-Think about money as we go.

-OK.

-Right, OK.

0:30:110:30:14

'All in all, there are 1.5 acres, so more than enough space for Ruby's many guests.'

0:30:140:30:19

-Yet another lovely area to relax.

-Yeah, beautiful.

0:30:190:30:24

-It's a naturally fed pond.

-Oh, gosh.

0:30:240:30:27

There are different places you can just relax.

0:30:270:30:30

Little pockets, yeah.

0:30:300:30:32

How much is it worth?

0:30:320:30:34

I think it's worth 1.2.

0:30:340:30:38

-1,200,000?

-Yeah.

0:30:380:30:40

-Pritpal?

-I think you're way, way too much.

-Too high?

-Yeah.

0:30:400:30:45

This probably is worth...

0:30:450:30:48

To me, I think it's round about £750,000.

0:30:480:30:51

-Shall I tell you how much it's on the market for?

-Yeah.

0:30:510:30:55

-Offers in excess of £1 million.

-OK.

-Has that changed things?

0:30:550:30:59

I think I need to look around a bit more.

0:30:590:31:02

Well, take it all in. There's plenty to look at. It could be yours.

0:31:020:31:06

-Yeah.

-You can afford it.

-Of course. Thank you.

0:31:060:31:09

You can afford it - "Of course," he says.

0:31:090:31:12

Positive responses. They really love the outside space.

0:31:120:31:16

But they're quite enamoured by the actual house itself.

0:31:160:31:20

Yeah, they want to put their own stamp on it, but who wouldn't?

0:31:200:31:24

On the market for offers over £1 million, this property is almost right on the money.

0:31:240:31:30

And it's a fantastic country home.

0:31:300:31:32

So will Ruby and Pritpal want to take the plunge?

0:31:410:31:45

I like this property a lot, beautiful interior, although the kitchen isn't very up to spec,

0:31:450:31:51

but that can be sorted out.

0:31:510:31:53

-This could be done quite nicely. Yeah.

-That's pretty, isn't it?

-Yeah.

0:31:550:32:00

A lot of things can be done to this place. The one negative point here

0:32:000:32:05

for this house for me would be that we need to spend quite a bit of money

0:32:050:32:10

to make it the way we want it.

0:32:100:32:12

-Are you done already?

-Yes.

-How disappointing. You don't want another look? I'm quite happy here.

0:32:120:32:18

-Come on then. Plenty more to see.

-Yeah.

-Let's go.

0:32:180:32:21

So it's time for the mystery property. This should be interesting.

0:32:300:32:35

Our couple like a modern design with sea views,

0:32:350:32:38

so we're taking them to an old piggery that's been tastefully restored, a mixture of old and new.

0:32:380:32:44

What this property has is an incredible kitchen/diner with plenty of space to entertain.

0:32:440:32:50

But it's a mile from the sea, so all you get is unadulterated country views.

0:32:500:32:55

Will they go for it or will they call me a swine?

0:32:550:32:58

-We're on our way to the mystery property.

-Yeah.

-What do you think we've got planned for you?

0:33:020:33:08

-Probably quite modern.

-Yes.

-Right.

0:33:080:33:12

-Probably we're looking at the sea.

-Yeah.

-Right.

-Probably by the lake.

0:33:120:33:16

-Lots of light, lots of air. A sea breeze, you know.

-OK.

0:33:180:33:23

'All will be revealed soon as we don't have far to go.

0:33:230:33:27

'We're heading east to the heart of the countryside just a mile from Blackpool Sands.

0:33:270:33:32

'For good beach life, Ruby and Pritpal will be hard pushed to find a better spot than Blackpool Sands.

0:33:320:33:38

'This award-winning Blue Flag beach is privately owned,

0:33:380:33:42

'but the owners are happy to share it with the many, many visitors.

0:33:420:33:46

'When watersports and sunbathing get too much,

0:33:460:33:49

'a mile down the road is Stoke Fleming with its 13th century pub.

0:33:490:33:54

'The mystery house is perfectly situated between the beach and the village.'

0:33:540:33:59

So welcome to the mystery property. You're both speechless.

0:33:590:34:03

-Different.

-It is different.

-Very different.

-You'll never guess what it used to be.

0:34:030:34:08

It was an 18th century piggery barn.

0:34:080:34:12

-Wow!

-Which has been totally refurbished, renovated.

0:34:120:34:17

-Have all the pigs gone?

-Yes, I can assure you.

0:34:170:34:20

-Shall we get a bit closer to it?

-Yeah.

-Follow me.

0:34:200:34:23

'This barn conversion was completed just a few months ago, so it's brand-spanking new.

0:34:230:34:29

'It's beautifully finished with a mixture of modern and character features

0:34:310:34:36

'and needs nothing doing to it at all.

0:34:360:34:39

'So can we persuade Pritpal and Ruby to invest in a real slice of rural Devon?'

0:34:390:34:44

You've got pine flooring. Come on through to one of the living areas.

0:34:440:34:48

-That's a nice size, yeah.

-These are clean lines, aren't they?

-Hmm.

-Do you like it so far?

-So far, so good.

0:34:480:34:55

So if it's the wow factor you're after...

0:34:550:34:58

Oh, wow, that's so nice!

0:34:590:35:02

-That's the wow factor.

-That is really good.

0:35:020:35:05

-You wanted a breakfast room where you could entertain.

-I like that.

0:35:050:35:09

Come on down.

0:35:090:35:11

What a room!

0:35:120:35:14

That is so nice. I love it. This is exactly what we're looking for.

0:35:140:35:20

-I would be here all day.

-Shall we go upstairs?

0:35:200:35:23

-Yes.

-Let's go up.

0:35:230:35:26

'Finally, I think we've found one room Ruby is 100% satisfied with.'

0:35:260:35:31

And how about this for living space?

0:35:330:35:36

-Oh, no.

-"Oh, no" what?

0:35:360:35:39

Beams, beams and more beams!

0:35:390:35:41

They're straight line beams, not olde-worlde beams.

0:35:410:35:45

I know, but I just don't like beams.

0:35:450:35:48

-I really don't. I'm not being funny.

-Downstairs is the wow factor.

0:35:480:35:53

-Yes.

-Upstairs is the "ooh" factor.

0:35:530:35:55

Really?

0:35:550:35:57

-Oh, dear.

-If it had a clean cut here...

0:35:570:36:00

If I'd come in last night and put a straight ceiling there, you'd have loved it?

0:36:000:36:06

-It would have been fantastic.

-It's so cleverly done. You've got the old piggery windows.

-They're beautiful.

0:36:060:36:12

But with a modern twist. Just behind you, clear glass. Come this way.

0:36:120:36:17

-Yeah.

-More beams.

0:36:170:36:19

'What can you do? I thought this mix of old and modern with big, open spaces would be spot-on.

0:36:190:36:25

'But it looks like I was way off the mark.

0:36:250:36:28

'Ruby and Pritpal could hide the character, but what a waste of stunning original features

0:36:280:36:34

'that usually come at the very top of most people's wish lists!'

0:36:340:36:38

So this is your master bedroom. Let me close this door.

0:36:390:36:43

-It's got a bathroom.

-It has.

0:36:450:36:47

-Nice, isn't it?

-Yeah.

0:36:470:36:49

-The idea is that you're lying in the bath and you're looking out at the pleasant valley.

-And the beams.

0:36:490:36:56

'I'm not giving up yet.

0:36:560:36:59

'The guest bedrooms beyond the living room have less character, so might be more to their taste.

0:36:590:37:05

'There are three double en-suites.

0:37:050:37:08

'Plus one single bedroom, detailed as a study, but all are unfurnished.'

0:37:100:37:16

This is an alternative really to your master bedroom.

0:37:180:37:22

-Very nice.

-Look how bright it is!

-It's beautiful.

0:37:220:37:26

-Fantastic. So much light in here.

-En-suite as well.

0:37:260:37:29

-Go and have a look.

-All right.

0:37:290:37:32

-Yeah, that's...

-That's good.

-Shower as well.

0:37:320:37:35

-That's to our liking.

-Yeah, I like that.

0:37:350:37:38

-So if the whole property was like this...

-It would be perfect.

0:37:380:37:42

-Really?

-It would.

0:37:420:37:45

'It seems for Ruby and Pritpal this house has plenty of plus points, but just as many negatives.

0:37:450:37:50

'Let's see if the land can convince them that a few beams might be worth living with after all.

0:37:500:37:56

'There's five acres to play with.'

0:37:560:37:58

-Come on out.

-Yeah.

0:37:580:38:00

Oh, it's so beautiful outside.

0:38:020:38:05

-Can you imagine when this is all done up? Lovely grass.

-Yeah.

0:38:050:38:10

-I think it's the mix, isn't it?

-Lots of potential.

-The modern, the old. And things can be done.

0:38:100:38:17

Let's go down to the bottom of your garden and tell me if you like the property or not.

0:38:170:38:22

-I can tell you if you can afford it or not. How's that?

-OK.

0:38:220:38:26

'That's a bit more positive. They're considering how this property might work for them. But will the price?'

0:38:260:38:32

How much do you think it's on the market for?

0:38:320:38:35

I think probably...about 800.

0:38:350:38:40

-£800,000?

-£800,000.

0:38:400:38:43

-That's purely because it's got the land.

-OK.

0:38:430:38:46

I think I'd go slightly higher on that.

0:38:470:38:50

990.

0:38:500:38:52

It's on the market for £965,000.

0:38:520:38:56

-There you go, Ruby, you're close again.

-He knows nothing.

-He doesn't.

0:38:560:39:01

I think it was wishful thinking on your part, wasn't it?

0:39:010:39:04

-Yeah.

-Start with the kitchen. Let's hope that the love of the kitchen transcends into the whole house.

0:39:040:39:11

-Here's hoping.

-OK.

-I'll be outside.

-OK, thanks.

0:39:110:39:14

Well, can't win 'em all.

0:39:160:39:18

We've found one thing out though - that Ruby doesn't like beams.

0:39:180:39:22

She's got a pathological hatred for them. They both don't like anything with character.

0:39:220:39:28

It's gonna make that move to the country quite difficult.

0:39:280:39:31

With a price tag of £965,000, this barn conversion comes in £35,000 under budget.

0:39:310:39:38

If it was for anyone but Ruby and Pritpal, it wouldn't need anything doing to it all.

0:39:380:39:43

But I think this house has too much character and it's not often that I get to say that.

0:39:530:39:59

What I like about this property is the land and the view is superb.

0:39:590:40:03

And it's pretty quiet.

0:40:030:40:06

We're looking to come down to Devon to have peace and quiet

0:40:060:40:10

and we can find it here.

0:40:100:40:13

I love the kitchen in the house.

0:40:130:40:15

This is exactly what I'm looking for.

0:40:150:40:18

The rest is not up to my liking.

0:40:180:40:21

-Here you go, one very warm coat.

-Thank you.

0:40:220:40:26

You've seen all the properties. The tour is over. Don't tell me if you're gonna go for any of them yet.

0:40:260:40:32

-Shall we go and grab a cold drink?

-That would be so good.

-Come on.

-My language!

0:40:320:40:37

'So that's it for our property tour of South Devon.

0:40:440:40:47

'Ruby and Pritpal have liked elements of all the houses we've shown them,

0:40:470:40:52

'even though they'd have major plans for them, so there's a lot to think about.'

0:40:520:40:58

Now it's time to find out what our couple made of the properties.

0:41:010:41:05

They haven't been backward in coming forward with their views, but has one house ticked all the boxes?

0:41:050:41:11

Let's find out, shall we?

0:41:110:41:14

Well, guys, we've seen a variety of properties here in South Devon.

0:41:180:41:22

-Some you've liked more than others? Is that right?

-Yes.

0:41:220:41:26

Our first property, the house with the lake and the sea at touching distance...

0:41:260:41:31

-That was an amazing house.

-Yeah.

-Ticks all the boxes.

0:41:310:41:34

-It does.

-Really?

-Nearly all the boxes.

-Nearly.

0:41:340:41:38

-Nearly all the boxes.

-What's not right?

-The width of the house.

0:41:380:41:42

-The width?

-It's long and narrow, but that could be made the way we want.

-Great location.

0:41:420:41:48

Fantastic. You can't go wrong there.

0:41:480:41:51

Let's talk about the Georgian farmhouse.

0:41:510:41:54

-Fantastic house again. Lots of land.

-A couple of acres of land.

0:41:540:41:59

As we actually went in, you didn't like the kitchen.

0:41:590:42:03

-The kitchen was too small, which I didn't expect in that house.

-OK.

0:42:030:42:08

-But again, the kitchen can be put at the back of the house.

-Yes.

0:42:080:42:13

And finally, the mystery property.

0:42:130:42:16

Hmm. I loved the kitchen.

0:42:160:42:19

That's exactly what I'm looking for.

0:42:200:42:22

But the only let-down was the beams.

0:42:230:42:26

I didn't expect you to say that at all.

0:42:260:42:30

-I'm sorry. I just don't like beams.

-We tried with the beams.

-Yes.

-Any you're gonna go and see again?

0:42:300:42:36

I think we'd like to go and see the house with the lake and the sea view.

0:42:360:42:42

-That property ticks a lot of boxes which we want.

-Yeah.

0:42:420:42:47

I'm delighted. Good luck in your search. It's been fantastic being with you.

0:42:470:42:52

-I hope you do find your home here in dreamy Devon.

-We do as well. Thank you.

-Thank you for your help.

0:42:520:42:58

So, as Ruby and Pritpal make their way home,

0:43:010:43:04

it's good to know that they'll be back to South Devon very shortly.

0:43:040:43:08

They absolutely love the county. Who wouldn't?

0:43:080:43:11

But finding that modern house built to their exacting standards isn't going to be easy.

0:43:110:43:17

If it is the house with the lake and the sea view, here's betting that they'll still knock some walls down!

0:43:170:43:23

Till next time, goodbye.

0:43:230:43:25

If you'd like to escape to the country and would like our help,

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Aled Jones is in Devon helping a couple of ex-property developers from Staffordshire find their dream home. They have an impressive budget of up to one million pounds, but want a massive minimalist modern mansion with sea views in one of Devon's most rural and expensive areas. Finding a thatched cottage is not a problem in this neck of the woods, but what this pair are seeking is rather more elusive.


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