Property series. Nicki Chapman is in Norfolk helping an animal-loving couple to find their perfect pad in the country. They have a budget of 350,000 pounds.
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Believe it or not, I'm standing quite literally on the edge of nowhere.
Intrigued? Find out more in a moment when we escape to the country.
This week, I'll be helping an animal-loving couple find a perfect pad in the country,
and our search for that fantasy island seems never-ending.
-There's room for an island.
-You could fit an island in there perfectly.
You could fit a continent in here, young lady.
But will they land more than they bargained for with the mystery house?
This week, we're in Norfolk, and this area of marshland used to be, according to the 19th century
directories, known as Nowhere, where for hundreds of years, local residents would come to pan
not for gold but for salt, which they used to preserve their food.
However, in 1862, Nowhere was formally incorporated into
the local parish of Acle, and now no longer appears on the map.
Norfolk, in East Anglia, is the fifth largest county in England,
looking out over the North Sea.
Its landscape may be flat,
but it's no less beautiful for that, with 100 miles of sweeping coastline
offering up stunning white sandy beaches and quiet seaside towns.
And from these shores emerged one of Britain's most famous seafarers -
Admiral Lord Nelson, who was born and schooled here.
But he wasn't the only water lover.
Two million visitors a year flock to the Norfolk Broads, the UK's largest
protected wetland, to soak up its wildlife and expansive views
from the comfort of their pleasure boats.
On firmer ground, Norfolk is home to a host of historic buildings,
from its 650 medieval churches
to its royal residence, the spectacular Sandringham Estate.
And there are plenty of rural hideaways to tempt any escapee,
from the traditional flint cottages to detached period homes.
From Rule Britannia to Cool Britannia, Norfolk is on the up.
Despite being the butt of many comedians' jokes over the years, the county is on a new
charm offensive, championing itself not only as a great holiday location
but as a world class business destination too.
And there are some first-rate properties to be found in the county.
Here are a few currently on the market.
For a cool £1 million, this Grade-II listed,
six-bedroom manor house in Lingwood
still has period features stretching back to the 1600s
in its magnificent reception rooms.
The more modern garden room is very much in keeping
and has delightful sunny views over the lawns outside.
£525,000 would land you
this four-bedroom barn conversion near Bungay.
With walls replaced by full-length windows,
the property makes the most of natural light.
The kitchen-diner is a hub for entertaining, and there's
an alfresco option with the patio, which all the rooms lead out to.
And for just shy of £300,000, this quirky 1950s three-bedroom cottage
in Barton Turf features a modernised kitchen
and comfortable dining in the recently added conservatory,
which overlooks the private rear garden.
We've searched high and low to find the very best properties here in Norfolk.
All that's missing is this week's house hunters.
Let me introduce you to Carol and Philip.
Philip, who's a fireman, and Carol have lived in their three-bedroom
semi-detached house in Potters Bar, Hertfordshire, for nine years.
Phil works in London, but will be retiring in a couple of years, so they've decided that now is the time
to put down some roots in rural Norfolk, and it doesn't sound like they're going to be lonely.
We like adopting animals that need looking after, and we think we'll
be able to do that better if we move to a larger property, bigger garden,
and we can then sort of adopt as many animals as we want to and look after them and give them a good home.
Another good reason is that Norfolk is only a couple of hours away,
and we have three children, we have two grandchildren and we still want to be part of their lives.
So far, Carol and Phil have not been prepared to compromise.
This is probably going to be our final move and we want to make sure that the property that we get
is perfect, so we have a quite demanding wish list for you to look at.
That sounds ominous. So, what kind of property are they looking for?
It must be detached, it must be in a rural location.
Three or four bedrooms, with a good sized lounge, a good sized kitchen
-and a nice big garden.
-And there are some other important considerations.
I'd really love a big kitchen, with a big range cooker and a big island
in the centre, so that we can cook together and entertain together.
Moving to Norfolk would mean a complete lifestyle change for Carol and I.
Within the next two years, I'll be retiring, I'll have a lot more time on my hands for interesting
activities such as boating, horse riding, long walks with the dogs and hopefully trips to the seaside.
I'm a great animal lover and I'd love to adopt more dogs and cats,
but also, I'm worried about
the plight of the battery hens
that need adopting at the moment,
and one of my passions would be to get some from a battery farm
and give them a good home
for the rest of their lives.
Are there any special features they're after?
A unique feature I think that I'd like in the new property would be an inglenook fireplace.
I think it would be lovely curling up on a winter's evening in front of a wood burner. Wouldn't it?
Very nice. We've seen a couple of barn conversions on our travels,
and I particularly like the character of those properties, with the vaulted ceilings and the beams.
And we may have another resident to consider if Carol gets her way.
I'm quite keen on adopting a donkey as well, but I've got to convince Phil of this.
Yeah, I'm very keen to adopt a donkey as well,
but if I let you have a free rein,
we'd have London Zoo down here, so I do have to rein you in a little bit.
Carol and Phil already have their house on the market for just shy of £350,000.
So, with that in mind, what's the budget for their new house in Norfolk?
Our budget for our move is £350,000.
We're after a period detached property with a good-sized kitchen and open fireplaces.
Outside, we need enough land for Carol to adopt a whole menagerie of animals in need of some TLC.
But I think a paddock for the donkeys may be pushing it.
Although Norfolk is affordable, finding a detached country property
with land and on their budget, well, it's a big ask.
The couple want to be close enough
to London for Phil to commute
to work and for Carol to continue
looking after their grandchildren.
So with transport links in mind,
our house search will radiate out
from Norwich, from where
countryside is just a short drive away.
In today's show, we've lined up three fantastic properties which I hope fit the bill,
but I won't be revealing the price of each until they've had a guess first.
As always, I'll be serving up a mystery property
to challenge everything they thought they wanted.
-Hi, guys. Welcome to Norfolk.
So, your house is on the market in Potters Bar.
-How is that progressing?
-Yeah, slow but sure.
We've had a couple of second viewings, so that's all good.
So we'll be keeping our fingers crossed on that front.
-Now, budgets. Remind me what your budget is.
The budget is £350,000.
And is there any flexibility on that at all?
There's a little flexibility upwards, yeah, we could possibly go to 375.
I know, Carol, you don't want to be too far away from your grandchildren. Two hours max?
And, Phil, you still need to commute into London for a few more years.
-I would do, yes.
-So why Norfolk?
Basically, because it's closer to the family.
We did look at another couple of places.
We looked at Cornwall and we looked at the Lake District, but they're really too far away.
Norfolk is a beautiful county, we've come here quite a lot of times and we love it.
It's easier to get back to the grandchildren.
We're very much into nature and conservation and things like that,
and there's wildlife sanctuaries to go and have a look at, so that's another good reason as well.
Because it does sound like you're going to have your own sanctuary!
How many animals do you want to re-home?
We'll do our best.
It's up for discussion.
Discussion and negotiation!
It is, yes, Carol will have the zoo and I'll have to balance that down a bit.
I was worried whether we were trying to find you a property, or Noah's Ark.
We've already got Noah's Ark.
Is it a new Noah's Ark in Norwich?
Yes, probably. Obviously, we'll have our rescue animals that we've got at the moment
and bring those with us, and hopefully taking on a few more.
Well, we do have some great properties lined up, and of course, the mystery property.
-Are you ready to get started?
-Very much so. Very excited.
Carol and Phil have set us a budget of £350,000,
but could stretch to 375,000 for the perfect property.
And even they admit they've got a demanding wish list,
which includes a good-sized family living room
topped off with an inglenook fireplace,
a large country kitchen,
three to four bedrooms
and enough land so they can re-home
their rescued animals, including space for hens
and ideally a donkey.
So, with this big move - and I know you love your horses,
your ponies, your donkeys -
but, Phil, you want to take up horse riding?
Yes, I definitely want to have a go at horse riding, Nicky.
It's not something that I've done before,
but it's definitely something I'm looking forward to giving a go at.
Well, I'm impressed. I horse ride - badly, I have to say -
but I'm very impressed. You're never too old, you see.
But it's a long way down when you come off.
It's a long way down, especially for me, and perhaps you can give me some tips on what to do.
Hang on tightly! That would be it.
Hang on and be nice to your horse.
Our first property takes us eight miles outside Norwich
to the public village of Coltishall,
often dubbed the gateway to the Broads.
Besides its thatched cottage, built using the distinctive knapped flint,
the village has some traditional shops,
and there are some eye-catching period properties dotted about.
So, let's see if the style of our first house
gets the thumbs-up from our couple.
-Come on through.
-Here is your first property.
It's a barn conversion, and I know a barn conversion was high up on the wish list.
It was, yes. Very much so, yes.
So, this barn dates back to the 1850s, only converted about 25 years ago.
-It's got an awful lot of character.
-It's got a lot of character.
I like the mixture of the brickwork and the flint.
-So, are you ready to take a look inside?
-Yes, very much so.
-Let's start with our first property.
Phil and Carol may find they have to compromise on something,
but let's see what their first reactions are to inside.
-In we come.
-Isn't that pretty?
And you've got a downstairs cloakroom there.
-Always handy, for guests.
-Good for your guests, yeah.
And, Carol, I know you said you wanted a big kitchen.
-Try this for size.
-Oh, look at that!
-The size of the kitchen is pretty much exactly what we're after, isn't it?
The butler sink is lovely.
I've always wanted one of those, so that's lovely as well.
And the work surfaces are beautiful.
-Looks really, really nice.
-And if you look, they've actually done the windowsill as well in the granite.
-I know you wanted an island in an ideal world. Well, Phil, what do you think?
I reckon you could fit one there quite nicely.
You could fit an island in there perfectly, I think, and it would be very useful for...
working around that area, but there would be no problem with putting an island in there.
-Have you seen the range?
-Beautiful, isn't it?
And you've got the dining area here.
When you look from the outside. it looks so small, as if nothing
has been done inside,
and then you come in and it's like a little TARDIS.
-I just hope you're not too disappointed on the size of the next room.
'Just teasing, Phil.
'I think they'll both be awestruck when they see the lounge.'
-How is this for living space?
-Look at the fireplace.
-Fireplace is fantastic.
You've got to guess what this was used for during the Second World War.
Would it have been some kind of...
hospital type place?
Nice, but no, actually, not quite as serious as that.
This was a cinema during the war, and then just after that, they used it for tea dances and barn dances.
-Oh, my word!
-So this really was the heart of the community here.
-So it has got huge character, this place, hasn't it?
-Hasn't it just?
-Let's have a better look down here.
-It's a huge space.
-It's a very big space.
-You've got access to the patio as well.
Access to the patio for the barbecues.
Wonderful. When the children come and stay, they're going to need somewhere to sleep.
-That's right, yeah.
-So let's look at those four bedrooms.
'It's been a very positive reaction to the quirky but spacious downstairs rooms.
'So, fingers crossed for upstairs, as we explore the bedrooms.'
-So, here is the master bedroom.
-A bit smaller than the room we've just come from.
It's hard not to compare, but you're not going to get those dimensions up here, I'm afraid.
-You can see the potential that's there.
And the master en suite is a real bonus,
with corner bath and separate shower cubicle.
Just down the landing, there's the family bathroom,
a small room currently set up as a study,
and a light, bright double room.
The two further bedrooms are tucked away on the top floor,
one a single which would be good for the grandchildren,
but we'll take a look at the fourth bedroom.
-This is a big room, isn't it?
-It is a big room, considering it's in the roof, basically.
-And it's got a good, high ceiling again.
-But not so much space outside, unfortunately.
-That might have to be the compromise.
-But shall we go and take a look at the garden and the patio?
-Definitely have a look, yes.
'Carol and Philip seem to like the house.
'There's certainly enough space, and they seem happy to put their own mark on the interior.
'But the space outside is what we need to tackle now.'
So, here is the garden. Sort of separated into three areas, you've got your formal garden there,
patio for entertaining here, and then
-off-street parking for two cars behind us.
-No, not very much land at all for animals.
You look really disappointed. It's breaking my heart!
It's a shame, because the house is so beautiful.
-So, how much do you think this barn would cost you?
-It's quite a difficult one.
I think it's going to be,
you're not going to get much change out of 370, I don't think.
-I think it might be a little bit lower, but not a lot.
You'd actually get £45,000 change from your budget.
-The asking price is £329,950.
-It's certainly something to think about and consider.
So, why don't you pop back into the barn, have another look around? I'll catch up with you in a minute.
-OK, thank you.
Under budget, at just shy of £330,000,
this property does have a lot going for it,
including a large country kitchen/breakfast room,
an enormous lounge, with that stunning vaulted ceiling,
character features with the range and the fireplace,
and four bedrooms, with a master en suite.
This is a good sized bedroom, isn't it?
Very good sized bedroom. All the bedrooms are a good size.
-Yeah, plenty of room for when the kids come down and stay.
-Yes. Plenty of room.
The garden was a bit small for our requirements,
but the actual property itself had loads of character.
This is a great space, isn't it?
-It is a great space.
-Playing chess, are we?
-I would offer you a game, but we've got plenty more to see.
Are you ready to keep going?
We may or may not be able to find a property with enough land for Phil and Carol to keep donkeys on,
but I'm taking them to a rescue sanctuary just outside Great Yarmouth,
which currently cares for over 1,100 horses, ponies and donkeys on its various sites.
We've come to meet Nicola Jarvis, the senior vet, to find out
just what it takes to care for these endearing animals.
Hi, Nicola, great to meet you.
-Hey, good morning.
-Lots of very friendly faces.
-Yes, I'm swamped by donkeys on this field.
How many donkeys have you actually got here?
In the sanctuary as a whole, we've got about 60 donkeys, I think,
but 30 on this farm that you can see today.
How much care do they need, then?
Quite a lot. In fact, we've some in stables today, if you'd like to see them?
-I'd love to.
-That would be great, wouldn't it?
-Let's go and have a look.
Adopting a pair of donkeys involves a lot of care, cost and land.
It's advised to set aside an acre and a half for them to roam, plus a couple of thousand pounds
to cover the vet's bills, insurance and feed.
-Nicola, who do we have here?
-This is Tufty,
our adoption donkey, and we also have Charity, his friend.
He doesn't look that young.
Not wishing to be rude! He's not a spring chicken, is he, our Tufty?
I don't think he'll take offence, but you're quite right, he's no spring chicken.
He's about 26 years old.
-What age can they live to?
-Well, the donkeys
I've come across, probably the oldest one I've met was about 50 years old.
-50? Did you hear that, Phil?
-50 years old, that's a long time
-to be looking after a donkey.
-You've got to think of that, yep.
If you're going to keep a donkey, could you just have one?
It's always recommended to have more than one.
Ideally, they're kept in pairs.
They tend to pine, not eat properly and lose condition if they're on their own.
But it hasn't got to be another donkey.
Sometimes, you can get them to pair up with, say, a small pony.
It's hard not to fall in love with these adorable animals.
But it'll be a real commitment for our couple, and a challenge for our
house hunt to find the perfect house with enough land.
So, as the sun sets over the Norfolk countryside,
our first day of property hunting comes to an end.
Fireman Phil and animal-loving Carol want to seek out a dream home in Norfolk.
Armed with £350,000, the couple are looking for a large house with land
which allows them to adopt rescue animals.
So far, they've seen just one property, but coming up,
Phil and Carol are smitten...
Yeah, I can see us here, no problem.
-Definitely, she says! Definitely!
..but there's more to the lay of the land than they think with our mystery house.
Yesterday taught us that not only does the house need to be right for Carol and Philip, but the land
surrounding the property has got to be right for their animals too.
It's the beginning of a new day. Let's see what it brings.
Next, we're heading to the village of Garvestone,
some 20 miles from Norwich,
in the heart of rural Norfolk.
Besides walking opportunities in the surrounding countryside and the local knapped flint church,
there's a scattering of rustic properties, and I've got high hopes for our next house.
-So here we are, it's a new day, it's a new property, and here she is.
-It's really nice.
-The land and the lovely, mature trees.
-I know you wanted mature shrubs and trees.
-That's a mature garden all right.
-Definitely. Lovely pond there.
-There's nothing there that really needs changing at all, I don't think, on first glance.
First glances are always good.
-So let's take a step inside.
It looks like a great first impression, and there's the bonus of a double garage and carport.
Let's take a look inside.
-Come on into the cottage.
-Oh, look at this...
-Look at that fireplace!
-That's what you call a fireplace, isn't it?
-Isn't that beautiful?
-You've spotted the inglenook straightaway.
-I love it!
-It looks like there will be a clearance.
-As long as I don't grow any more, we'll be all right.
-That's jolly good news!
Don't want you bumping your head as you walk through the door.
You've got a large downstairs bathroom and you've got a toilet,
so two toilets downstairs. You've got a utility room,
and leading off the utility room is a large study.
Let me show you what the reception room is like.
-I don't think you're going to be too upset when you see this.
Another fireplace, look!
Nice sized room. Really nice sized room.
And you do have your wood burner, as you noticed.
Yes, that's lovely, isn't it? That's beautiful.
I can imagine sitting there in front of that of a night time.
Yeah, I can see us here, no problem.
-Definitely, she says! Definitely!
Access to your garden.
Yeah, and we've got it all.
Very pleasing. We have got it all.
-We'll carry on and see what you think of the next room.
'It's all smiles so far. Fingers crossed that continues,
'as we see what's cooking in the kitchen.'
-Oh, my word!
-You wanted a big kitchen.
This has to be one of the biggest kitchens I think I've ever seen.
OK. It's not too shabby, is it, dear?
Are you all right?
It's just beautiful.
Look at the cooker. Have you seen the cooker?
-It's a bit of a journey for you, isn't it?
It's really good, isn't it? It's wonderful.
This is just about, it's a wonderful size you see initially when, OK, we're going
to see a cottage, you think small rooms, and then what we've just walked through and then into this,
is quite surprising. It's really surprising.
-It's really taken my breath away.
-Nothing I can say against it.
And I don't care about the island!
You could fit a continent in here, young lady!
There's a sort of an island there.
I can live with that, don't worry! It's beautiful.
-And through that door, you have a conservatory.
-We like conservatories.
You two have got a lot to explore with this property!
-I'll let you have a good look around.
-Just a bit.
-And I can gather my thoughts.
I need to gather my thoughts!
I'm glad it's impressed you.
Thanks ever so much, Nicky, it's lovely, thank you.
-I've got to get upstairs right, though, haven't I?
-That's the thing, yeah.
-Shall we head up those stairs?
-Let's have a look.
'This house is definitely working its magic.
'The all-important kitchen has totally overwhelmed Carol.
'While she catches her breath,
'we'll retrace our steps into the reception hall
'and head upstairs to look at the first of the three bedrooms.'
So, come on through into the bedroom.
-As you can see, it's much more of a cottage up here.
Yeah, a little bit smaller. A nice ceiling height, having said that.
There's no problem with the ceiling height.
Like the window as well, looking outside.
And it's light, though.
Cottages can be dark, but it's not that at all.
'The other two bedrooms include one that's set up as a study,
'but I'm saving the best till last.'
I've been a little bit crafty.
Oh, you have been crafty, haven't you? Look at the size of this.
-I never expected anything this size.
-Not from a cottage, no.
Is this more like it?
-On our wish list, we're doing quite well, aren't we?
-There was something that you would like.
That was a bedroom with an en suite.
That's right, yes.
-Thank goodness I can say yes to that!
-I so love your expressions!
-That's not an en suite, that's sort of a master bathroom.
-Look at that!
-It's important that you're both happy.
That wouldn't be a dressing room by any chance, would it?
-Oh, my word!
-So much storage.
-I love that little window there,
and the dressing room as well. Again, looking out on the trees and everything.
-I think you need some fresh air, don't you now?
-Just a bit.
-I think so.
-Time to go outside?
-Oh, yes, please!
-Oh, just a bit!
'What a reaction! But I can understand why.
'There's all the space and character they could possibly ask for,
'and outside, there's an old stable block,
'which I'm sure Carol would put to good use.'
-Is half an acre enough?
Plenty of room for my chickens, and maybe a donkey.
-It's just about the right size.
-And we're at the head of the River Yar, and that's your boundary line,
so you've even got a stream running through your property, which has never flooded.
-Now, I'm going to bring you both back to reality.
-I'm going to ask you how much this is worth.
-This is the hard bit.
-Who wants to go first?
I don't want to say too much, because I don't want it to be above our budget.
I'll say the top of our budget - 375.
-I'm going to go for a little less. I'm going to go with 360.
The current asking price...
-We can afford it!
-We can, yes.
I'm so thrilled! You're so emotional.
Do you think you might want to go around again and have a little look?
-Can you wait a few hours?
-The rest of the day, you mean?
-It won't be a short one.
-You take your time. Make sure you've got a hankie with you. Off you go.
-Thank you. Bye.
Well, I have never, ever had that reaction before.
Tears! Fingers crossed, we might be cementing a deal.
Under budget at just shy of £350,000,
this character property has everything
on Phil and Carol's wish list, and dare I say,
could be their dream home, featuring
a large, light sitting room with wood burner,
an enormous kitchen-diner and conservatory,
three bedrooms with a master en suite and dressing room,
and besides all the outbuildings,
there's a half an acre of garden,
so plenty of room for Carol's
menagerie of animals.
It's a beautiful room. it's got my lovely inglenook fireplace, the beams.
-Lovely beams. I think our furniture is going to be perfect in this room.
I'm just speechless, really.
It's a wonderful property.
This is a really good sized room as well, isn't it?
It's a perfect sized room for the grandchildren.
-We'll get a couple of little beds in here, no problem.
This is definitely a property that I can see Carol and I retiring to,
living in and spending many wonderful years here.
That face says it all!
I really don't want to drag you both away, but I'm afraid I'm going to have to.
-That's a shame!
Animal lovers Carol and Phil are eager to re-home battery chickens
and are all too aware of their plight.
But although the EU plans to ban the use of battery farmed eggs by 2012,
16 million battery hens still sit in their cramped cages.
However, help is at hand.
Carol and Phil are meeting Simon Taylor, from the Battery Hen Welfare Trust, to get some re-homing tips.
This is an example of a chicken house.
This is homemade, but there are all sorts of houses on the market that you can do.
Inside, you need a nest box with bedding in it.
We usually use hay. They've been in cages and they may not have feathers on,
and it's softer for them and for the eggs.
How many hens would you get in a structure this size?
In here, I'd have thought you'd easily have six.
But always make it bigger than you need.
-How many eggs do they lay when they come from the farm?
-Once they've settled down,
they'll be laying approximately 40 to 50 per cent of what a caged bird would do.
So you might get three or four eggs a week, but we're currently getting
from our little girl, we're getting one a day.
And you'll notice a change in the eggs as well.
-They'll start becoming firmer and take on a nice brown colour.
They get the nutrition back into them. Would you like to come and meet some of the birds?
-We'd love to.
As hens are flock animals and very sociable, Carol and Phil
might want to think about re-homing at least three birds for starters.
Although the cost of keeping them is minimal, they do need to be cleaned out regularly
and given fresh water and feed daily, as well as being able to roam free every day.
So, here are some ex-batts that we've had for a while now.
They soon start feathering up,
as soon as they're outside getting proper nutrition, moving around.
What sort of time frame for when you initially get them
to when they look sort of quite healthy, like they are now?
They'll start re-feathering within sort of four to six weeks, I think, gradually.
a couple of months, they should really have come back together again.
Carol and Phil are not just thinking about improving
their own quality of life when they move to the country,
they're also serious about doing what they can to re-home rescue animals.
So, we're going to be seeing the mystery house in a bit.
What's the priority?
The land, or the house?
-That's very difficult, isn't it?
-That's a very difficult question.
-It's got to be a little bit of both.
-You want it all, don't you?
Our mystery property takes us to the village of Alderford,
just over 10 miles from Norwich.
It's a quiet rural spot surrounded by fields,
but Carol and Phil could head
four miles down the road to Reepham
for their provisions and a bite to eat.
There are some interesting looking properties tucked away around here,
including our historic mystery house, which dates back to 1900
and is one of two recently extended dairy cottages.
-So, guys, here is your mystery property.
As you can see, two cottages,
farmers' cottages, so it is semi-detached.
This is the one we're looking at and I know that wasn't on your wish list,
-but if you can, I want you to keep an open mind.
So, what are your first impressions?
Lovely outlook, beautiful over the fields, lovely garden.
-Like the look of the house.
-So, your mystery house is waiting.
-Are you ready?
-Take us in.
'It's a muted first impression from Carol and Phil,
'but the living areas inside are a real surprise.'
So, come on through...
into the hallway. It has to be a very, very large hallway,
or you could use it as a reception room,
or, as they have, keep it as a play room.
Play room, very good. Lovely fireplace, with a nice wood-burning stove.
-You like those, don't you?
-I do, yeah. I like a nice fireplace.
Excellent. And it flows nicely into the next room.
-So, you've got a separate dining room.
That's very nice indeed.
Lovely, lovely fireplace.
I like the exposed brick.
It's a really nice sized room, and I really love the floor as well.
Good. The kitchen is behind us.
So, it's a great location for a dining room to be in.
-I want to take you straight through into the garden room.
They call it the garden room, but it feels like a very, very nice conservatory to me.
-It does indeed. It's big.
-Really, really nice.
Very big, very light, very airy. Lovely views outside of the garden.
-You couldn't get better, could you, than that?
-Let's see what you think of the kitchen.
-You love a country kitchen.
-Yes. Look at those flagstones.
-Beautiful, aren't they?
-Shall I let you into a little secret?
-It's cement, made to look like flagstones.
It's really hard wearing and it looks fantastic, I have to say.
But forget the floor. What do you think of the lovely kitchen?
It's beautiful, isn't it? Nicely done again.
-I really like the cabinets.
-Cabinets are lovely.
A nice range again.
So I can still do plenty of cooking.
And there is room for an island, if I really wanted one.
Through the door, there's a utility room,
and you've got a downstairs shower and toilet as well.
-So this is all the new part of the house.
-Workable for you?
-Good, good. Shall we go upstairs?
'With such a surprising amount of space on offer, perhaps Carol and Phil
'can put the fact it's semi-detached to the back of their minds.
'And upstairs, you certainly wouldn't expect five bedrooms.
'Let's see what they think of where they would sleep.'
So, I want to show you the master bedroom first.
Nice size, very nice size.
Lovely views through the window.
I love that. You can wake up to that, and it's quite a low window as well,
-so you could probably look out of there from the bed.
-Big enough for you both?
-Pretty much, just about big enough, I think, yes.
-But I'm sensing a little bit of a reluctance.
-Yes, at the back of my mind,
I know this property is semi-detached,
and at the top of our wish list was, it must be detached.
So, I'm a little bit reserved.
Everything is wonderful, but the house itself is lovely and everything
you're showing us is lovely, but at the back of my mind, I'm thinking it's semi-detached.
-Is it putting a slight dampener on it?
-Just a little bit, yeah, I agree. Just a little bit.
The only thing I can say to you is, this is the mystery house...
-..so bear with me.
-Let's go upstairs.
'I'll leave them in suspense while we explore the other four bedrooms,
'which include a light single room great for the grandchildren,
'and one large enough to be a double
'with those space-saving fitted wardrobes.
'There's a bright, modern family bathroom
'with separate bath and shower cubicle.
'Every inch of space has been put to good use,
'as we discover upstairs in the former loft.'
-So, we're at the very top of the house.
And I don't think this is ever going to be Phil's bedroom.
No, it won't be my space, I don't think.
-Don't think so. But
-could live up here.
You could. And perfect for guests and grandchildren.
Very nice, yeah. Nicely done.
Someone shorter than me would have a good time, I think.
The good news, the other bedroom, which is just along the landing, that has got a higher ceiling.
So that would be all right for you. It's also got the exposed sort of chimney breasts, if you like,
with exposed brick, which makes a very attractive feature.
Behind you is a bathroom.
So your guests up here have their own bathroom.
Yes, that's probably a very good thing, because those stairs
during the night and things like that could be a bit dangerous.
So shall we pop back outside, have a look around the ground, look at
the house and perhaps have a bit more of a chat?
-Sure, lovely, thank you.
-Phil, you lead the way.
'This is a beautifully presented house, but I wonder if they can forget about it being attached.
'Outside there's three quarters of an acre, so plenty of space for Carol's chickens.
'On top of that, I have a deal on the land up my sleeve.'
Standing here, you can see all the garden, because it actually wraps itself around the cottage.
It's beautiful, isn't it? Lovely, lovely garden.
How much do you think this is worth?
I think it's your turn first.
It is my turn, and I'm going to go for 345,000.
I think I'll go a bit less. I think it'll be about 339.
Ooh, you're very close between you, aren't you?
-The actual asking price for the cottage is £300,000.
-I've got something else to show you.
-So, I know your animals are very, very close to your heart.
This mystery property has the added bonus of being able to buy some land.
-From here to that hedge and all the way around there,
-all the way through, literally to where the trees are there, that's just under two acres...
..that is for sale separately from the house.
-So the house is 300,000, but you could buy all of that land for £30,000.
-Oh, my word!
-A lot to think about.
-An awful lot to think about.
-Options as well.
-Lots of options.
So, why don't you go and take another look around the cottage?
-Love to, thank you very much.
-Think about that land.
-And I'll catch up with you in a little while.
'It may be semi-detached, but our mystery proposition
'would give them enough land for a couple of donkeys.
'Under budget at £300,000,
'it offers them three very versatile reception rooms
'with lots of character,
'a large country-style kitchen,
'five well-decorated bedrooms, along with two bathrooms,
'and three quarters of an acre of garden,
'with the option of buying another two acres for £30,000
'for Carol's donkeys,
'and they'd still come in under budget.'
Five bedrooms here. It's amazing how they've been able to do that, isn't it?
-I definitely think that I could see myself living in this property, so it does make me think
that there might be something that we could do with this property, even though it's semi-detached.
Just under two acres is a lot of land.
Yep, and it's beautiful land as well, and we could do so much with it.
I can see myself in this house. I'd have to think about it a little bit longer,
whether I'd want to take up that additional land.
-You two have got a lot to think about, haven't you?
-An awful lot, an awful lot.
-Let's take you somewhere quiet and you can think what your next move could possibly be.
Yeah, lovely, thank you.
Well, our house hunt is at an end,
and our properties have certainly given Carol and Phil
lots of options to think through.
It's been a real emotional couple of days for Phil and Carol, especially
for Carol, but I suspect we may have found them their dream property.
But there's only one way to be certain - let's go and ask them.
Carol and Phil, it's been a great few days.
I hope you've enjoyed yourselves.
Absolutely wonderful, thank you very much. It's been a great time.
Had a wonderful time, it's been very exciting, yes.
So, let's talk properties, and start off with the barn conversion.
What did you think about that?
Barn conversions were something that I was very keen on and very keen to have a look at,
and while the property was stunning inside, the garden wasn't very big.
A new day, a new property.
We saw that very old cottage,
with the extensions either side, and the enormous kitchen.
-Took my breath away, didn't it?
-I think you should start, Carol.
I went all overcome when I saw that!
I just fell to pieces, I don't know.
I got very emotional, and when we walked in, I saw all the land and I thought, "This looks perfect."
As we moved from room to room, it just got better and better and more positive.
Throughout the whole of the tour of the property
and the grounds, there was pretty much no disappointment at all.
-Our last property was our mystery house.
That was a mystery as well, wasn't it?
It was. It was stunning gardens and a beautiful looking house,
and again, going through the rooms, they were spectacular.
The disappointment was that it was semi-detached, and we're really sort of sticking by
that we want a detached property, so that was a little disappointment.
And it is a shame, because I'd have loved that extra land, and to have
done something with that,
but I think we've got enough land with the cottage anyway, haven't we?
-Yes, and the garden that comes with it.
-That sounds quite leading!
I was going to ask you, what is the next step?
-I think, almost certainly, a second visit is on the cards.
-Definitely on the cards.
And...I'm looking to see where the Christmas tree is going to go.
Oh, that sounds very positive! And you will let us know
-how you get on, won't you?
-Oh, definitely, yes.
-Thank you both so much, it's been a great few days.
-It's been wonderful, thank you very much.
For Carol and Phil, this house hunt wasn't just about finding a property for THEM,
it was also about getting a property with enough land to support all their furry and feathered friends.
With their flexibility on location and general open mindedness,
I think we may have found them their perfect Norfolk home.
Join us again next time on Escape To The Country.
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Nicki Chapman is in Norfolk helping an animal-loving couple find their perfect pad in the country. With a budget of £350,000, they admit to having a demanding wish-list which includes a good-sized living room topped off with an inglenook fireplace, a large country kitchen and enough land to re-home rescue animals.