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Today I'm in England's oldest county and at the turn of the century orchards covered 25,000 acres,
earning it the title of England's garden. Amazingly, today these apples are all still hand-picked.
That's a bit unfortunate for me, but if you want to know where I am, keep watching to find out.
'In today's show, I'll be helping a couple break away from suburbia for a slower pace of life.
'I'll be showing them some of the best houses the area has to offer, giving them plenty to smile about.'
This is lovely.
'Including the mystery house, where we'll see it can be emotional when you know it feels like home.'
Today I'm in Kent and this is pretty back-breaking work, I've got to say.
Historically, these apples would've ended up on the tables of London.
Today I'm in the orchard with Craig, who manages it. Is it still fair to call Kent the garden of England?
-Absolutely, for apple growing.
-This is the place to be.
-What variety have we got in here?
-Today we're picking Braeburn.
-Have I done a good job?
-You've done very well.
-No bad apples.
Let's hope, fingers crossed, I do as well with our properties in Kent today.
There's more to this county than fruit orchards. Neatly manicured landscapes of sloping hills
and lush farmland surround picturesque villages and enchanting towns,
like the cathedral city of Canterbury.
Then there are pretty seaside resorts dotted around 350 miles of sprawling, rugged coastline,
including the magnificent white cliffs of Dover.
Everything about this county
offers relaxation and escape from the rush of urban life.
Given its great transport links to London, Kent is a sought-after location for home buyers.
It's no surprise that the average detached house
is a whopping 22.5% higher than the national average.
I'm really hoping that today's buyers have the ability to compromise or a really good budget!
One thing I know for sure is they haven't got far to travel.
Today's property hunters are Barbara and Terry from Gillingham in Kent,
who have lived in a four-bed detached bungalow for over 20 years.
Terry works for himself as a builder and he and Barbara yearn for the countryside
to live close to their grandchildren and to downsize to a new pad for their retirement.
We moved into this property when our children were smaller. They've all left now and it's too big.
We've been here for 22.5 years and just want somewhere quieter.
They plan to stay in Kent, but with a complete change in environment.
We live in a built-up area. It would be nice to move out to somewhere more rural.
They're looking for a middle ground. Barbara yearns to be near the sea, Terry wants a more rural outlook.
-We'd like to get more villagey, nearer the coast.
-For me, a real bonus would be to be able
to look out of your windows and see the countryside.
Their three children may have fled the nest, but they still have a few much-loved birds.
The parrots are coming with us. They're quite important to us.
We need somewhere we can put them
cos they're part of the family.
Terry is looking forward to more time to play music in his own chill-out room.
Barbara is after a big kitchen.
I really like this kitchen. I had it put in to my design and in the next property
I would like a similar sort of kitchen with a lot of workspace.
And they both want space outside, too. Barbara wants to indulge her love of gardening.
And Terry wants his own garage.
We have a car port here and a garage, so it's quite important that on the next property
we have a garage or space to put one.
-What's their ideal home?
Rural or semi-rural.
-Kitchen that suits me, preferably big.
They not only have a clear wish list, they'll know when it's the right home for them.
If we walk into a property, we'll know. We did with this one.
-It was in a bit of a state, but we just knew.
-It was for us. So when we see a property,
-we shall know it's definitely for us.
So to get the ball rolling, we've invited round an estate agent to value their property.
This is an excellent example of a four-bed detached chalet bungalow.
Lots of extra benefits, including kitchen/breakfast room, and a central location.
With all that in mind, I would value this property at £350,000.
We're happy with the estate agent's valuation.
We bought the property 22 years ago for £55,000, so I think we've made quite a good profit.
And with some additional funds, their total budget is £370,000.
So Barbara and Terry are primarily looking for peace and quiet,
but they also want to be closer to their grandchildren. That's a contradiction in terms!
Anyway, they want 2-3 bedrooms, some space for their feathered friends,
a chill-out room for Terry and a good size garden for Barbara to spread her horticultural wings.
With children in Whitstable and Folkestone, they want a property in the Kent Downs area.
We'll be focusing our search around Canterbury.
I'll take them to properties I hope tick all their boxes, but I'll keep the prices under wraps.
To finish off, I'll show them a real wild card, the mystery house, to throw something different in.
Barbara and Terry's house hunting is up and running and Kent has properties for all budgets.
Just take a look at these.
If you had £2.95 million, you could buy this impressive Georgian house in a beautiful setting
with 21 acres. Located near the village of West Farleigh, it's spacious and elegantly finished.
For £800,000, this charming five-bed property dating back to the 17th century
is full of character and on the fringes of Brenchley.
And this Grade 2-listed period home dating back to the late 16th century
could be yours for £495,000.
Located in Langley, it sits on two and a quarter acres of immaculate gardens and paddocks.
-Usually, I would welcome you to the lovely area you have chosen, Kent,
-but we haven't gone very far!
-Not at all.
-How well do you know the area?
Quite well, actually. We only live about 40 miles away, so we know it pretty well.
That's good. It's still a beautiful county and I understand that your budget, which was £350,000,
-has changed a little?
-It's gone to 370, yeah.
That should give us something to play with. It is a popular area, so it may be a little bit tricky,
-but 370 is good.
-And you're a builder.
-I am, yes.
-You'll have a meticulous eye!
-Tapping walls, yeah.
Are there any definite no-nos? Anything we've got to avoid?
-Er...yeah. I don't like new houses.
-Something a little bit older.
-No new houses, no thatched roofs.
I said it was going to be OK, but now I'm starting to worry!
Don't worry. We have got some really gorgeous properties. And the mystery house.
We shouldn't waste any more time. It's time we got on with it.
So Barbara and Terry have a budget of up to £370,000.
-This is a downsizing move, isn't it?
-It is, yeah. The property we've got,
I've extended over the years because of our family.
Then they've moved out and you're left with a bigger property.
-And we really want something a little bit smaller.
Just a little bit smaller, but enough room to spread out a little.
-Are you concerned about that aspect? Getting rid of some belongings... It's quite emotional.
It is emotional to get rid of it. You've got to do it.
-It'll be nice, exciting.
-You're ready now.
-Look what you're swapping it for.
Let the search begin.
For our first property, we travel 30 minutes south of Canterbury to the village of Paddlesworth.
Surrounded by gorgeous nature trails, it offers the peaceful life Terry and Barbara imagine.
There's also a pub to mingle with the locals,
and for a wide selection of shops, the village of Hawkinge is a five-minute drive away.
-So here we are.
-This is the property.
-It looks good.
-A nice slate roof.
-It is a nice detached house.
I know that was important to you. And it's a gorgeous looking one from the outside.
-So a thumbs up to start with?
That's important from the builder! But this weather is not so good.
-We need to get on in there and have a look around.
'It's good to see the rain hasn't dampened their spirits. Let's see what they think of the interior.'
-In we come, out of the rain.
-And straight into the kitchen.
-This is lovely.
-This is brilliant.
-A nice-size kitchen. It's lovely.
-Yes, this is well done. Really well done.
-"Lovely", "well done".
-A nice kitchen. It's lovely. Nice and roomy, big.
It's a good, spacious kitchen. It's got everything you need in here.
-That lovely big cooker over there, range style.
-It's what I'm used to.
-Yeah, it's nice.
-The kitchen in your current home is special to you because you designed it.
-But it's smaller than this.
-This is upsizing.
-This is upsizing, this is lovely.
-This has got the wow factor for me.
-Fantastic! A good start.
-I think we should keep moving. Let's go through this way.
So into this space, which is a lovely little room. At the moment it's an office space.
-You could maybe have a smaller dining room.
-You could, yes.
-Quite a nice little area.
-So another good space. Shall we keep moving?
-Through into the living space.
-This is nice.
-It's nice. Cosy.
-It's cosy, isn't it?
-Yes. I can see our furniture in here.
-Oh, I like that!
-Seeing your furniture in here.
-It's nice to have it all done.
-You can have a rest!
-Have a rest!
-Just move in.
-I do like that fireplace.
-It's a great big one.
-A good feature.
That is a word I like very much! We've had a fantastic start. There's a lot more to see. Let's go.
'And wait till they see the conservatory, which is just the perfect place to relax.'
-Let's look at this sun room.
-It's a nice room for the parrots!
-It is. It's ideal, yeah.
-They'd love it in here.
-They've been with you a long time.
-We can't really part with them now.
-It started about 20 years ago with Nigel.
-So you've got Nigel...
-Nigel, Geoffrey and Rosie in here.
-They get the room with the best light!
-They'd love it.
-They'd love it. It's ideal.
-We've made a cracking start so far.
-But it's not over yet. Let's have a look at some more.
'So far this house has everything they need. We're heading back through the lounge.
'There's a spacious shower room and utility room, but let's see what they think of the bedrooms.'
Come on in. This is a three-bedroom property and this is the master.
-Ooh! A slightly hesitant "right" there!
-Smaller than we're used to.
-We've got a big bed.
-I'm not sure it's going to fit in here.
-So that was the hesitation.
-Yes, it's a super king bed.
-Super king! OK.
-It might fit across.
-It would just about fit in there.
-You wouldn't sit up too quick!
That is the thing about this room. It's built right under the eaves so you've got the slope there.
-But you have got great views.
-It's a nice room.
-Yes, it is.
-Definitely got a lot going for it.
-In general, so far.
-That's good. Shall we have a look at some more?
'Terry and Barbara are slightly concerned by the size of the room,
'but they do seem open-minded.' We have another bedroom here.
-Oh, yes. This is a nice size.
-This is not bad, is it?
-That's a nice positive reaction.
-It's an extremely bright house.
-It's got a nice feel to it.
-A good feel. That's important.
-How you feel when you walk in.
-I know that's how you chose the property you're in.
-What feeling are you getting?
-I'm getting a good...
-A nice feeling.
-It is a nice place.
-It is nice.
-A nice property for two people.
'There's one more spacious bedroom and a family bathroom.
'We're heading out to the garden where I do have one confession to make - there's no garage.'
-It's still a bit grey! But I think the rain is holding off for the moment.
Anyway, here we are out into the garden space.
-It's smaller than...
-What we wanted.
-It's quite nice.
-Quite a nice area.
-You could live with the garden.
-It's quite a nice size.
-Yes, not a bad size at all.
-It's nice and neat and tidy.
-Over there, a log shed for your wood burner.
And plenty of parking space there. The house is detached, but you do have some neighbours,
-although you're not overlooked.
-That's not a problem.
-Anything on your mind?
-There's not a garage, no.
-There might be scope.
-A little project for you, build something over there.
Let's turn around now and have another look at this fine figure of a house. Great location.
Nice and quiet. How much would you be willing to pay for it?
-Oh, gosh. It's an awkward one.
-It is. I would hazard a guess...
at somewhere around about 360.
-I think I'd go a bit higher.
-About 375, I would say.
-A bit out of our budget.
-Shall I put you out of your misery?
The guide price on this property is £350,000 - £375,000.
-So you were spot on there at the higher end.
-You weren't so bad either. Very good guess.
-I'd say it's fairly priced.
-For what it is. It's a very nice place.
-Something you'd be interested in?
-Good! I like that.
-Head back in for another look and we should speak later on.
-Catch up with you later.
They loved it from the inside. It is at the top end of their budget,
but we're in a tricky market, so they could put in an offer.
The location of the house is perfect. It's just what we wanted.
-Walking into the kitchen, it's lovely. My sort of kitchen.
-The size is brilliant.
-I think it's lovely.
We are downsizing and it's got everything that we need, basically.
The lounge is lovely.
-I think this is a lovely room.
-Our furniture would fit in nice here.
-Yeah, it would.
-It would suit us down to the ground.
-OK, you two. Seen enough?
-It's time to drag you away.
One of Kent's most well-known towns is Canterbury, where our buyers took a stroll earlier in the week.
It's famous for its stunning cathedral, which dates back to 597AD and is now a World Heritage Site.
I think Barbara and Terry would be very content doing their shopping in one of Kent's finest hubs.
I'm really looking forward to moving to the countryside,
but I'm looking more forward to all these nice shops!
A short drive away is Herne Mill. Built in 1789, it was a working mill until 1980,
when it fell into disrepair. It's now restored to its former glory and open to visitors.
Megan Taylor explains the history.
Back at the end of the 19th century,
the big commercial mills started operating in the ports
and they were using big rollers to produce vast quantities of flour.
At that time, the windmills were having problems competing,
so they started to introduce small pieces of machinery like this. Now I'll show you how it works.
Grain came down the chute into the hopper, down through here,
down between the rollers and into the bin at the bottom. Here's what comes out.
This is the animal feed. The grain has all been crushed. The pieces of white are the flour.
The grain's been crushed so the animals can digest it when they eat.
Next it's time for a stroll out in the fresh air.
Five miles east of Canterbury lies one of the UK's finest habitats - Stodmarsh National Nature Reserve.
There are several walks through the 241 hectares of wetlands,
which are home to reed birds, lakes and a variety of bird populations.
Barbara and Terry seem very at home.
-Amazing. It's a lovely view.
-We've lived in Kent all our lives
-and didn't know this existed. It's lovely.
-We'll have to come back here.
For our next property, we travel ten miles away from the last house
to the village of Stanford North.
With only a church and a pub,
they can visit the pretty village of Saltwood a couple of miles down the road
for a little more community life - and shopping.
It's also just a ten-minute scenic drive to the sea,
which should delight Barbara.
Well, we're in Stanford North.
The good thing about this area is that you're very close to Folkestone.
You're not far from Ashford, only 20 minutes from Canterbury.
-So it's a great location. Brilliant!
So come up here and have a look at this.
-It looks very nice.
-Yes, it does.
-So first impressions?
-Yes, looks nice. Yes, it does.
-It is a bungalow, clearly.
-And you're currently in a bungalow.
-Are you OK with that?
-Yes. Yes, fine with a bungalow.
One of the bonuses to this property is the garage at the side there.
-That's something you were looking for.
-Good. A lot of space.
But what do you think about the property itself, size-wise?
-It looks OK to me.
-It looks a nice size.
-We are downsizing, so yeah, it looks fine.
-Good, that's the spirit!
I do think you're going to be quite surprised when you see inside. Shall we go?
'So let's see what they think of the inside,
'which has been decorated to a beautiful finish.'
Here we go.
We're into the hallway first of all.
Just give our feet a good wipe.
A lovely fresh room, and gorgeous carpet in here.
-This is unusual.
-It's a nice hallway.
-Yeah, it's nice. Well... If you come out here,
we're right in the centre of the property, it is a bungalow,
so we're all on one level. It's got three bedrooms,
and they're all off of this hallway here.
-But we'll come back to those.
So that's why, I guess, it's got this unusual shape,
because it's right in the heart of the property, everything else is over the other side.
-It's nice and bright. Nice hallway.
-We'll see what's through there.
-I thought you might say that.
You're excited to see what else there is. Well, come this way.
Now, what do you think of this?
-This is a nice size.
-Oh, this is nice.
A little feature fireplace there. And a lot of light coming in.
Yeah, definitely, nice and bright.
-I mean, could you imagine your furniture in here?
-Yes, this'll all fit in, yeah.
-It will, yeah.
It's fine. But I think the space, it's just a little bit too small.
Our furniture would fit in all right, but a bit tight, I think.
It's just a little bit too small for my liking.
Terry, you've been a bit quiet, what are your thoughts?
Pretty much the same, really. The view out into that garden is fantastic.
-And you couldn't better that.
-We'll get outside later on,
and have a look at that garden - I think you'll be wowed.
-Yeah, I'm sure.
-But right now, I want to show you the kitchen.
'Even though they think the room is too small,
'they seem very keen on the views.
'With Terry being a builder, there is potential to extend this property.
'Let's head to the kitchen and see what they think.'
Here we come into the kitchen.
OK. It's a bit small.
No place for a table.
-It's got quite a lot of worktop area...
-It's nicely done.
-Definitely nicely done.
-The views again, out on to that garden...
-It's a nice modern kitchen,
-done in the last seven years.
But is it what you would have done with the space?
I think that extensions, if possible,
would have to be done to make it bigger, definitely.
This kitchen is still part of the old house.
-There is an extension and it's out that way.
So let's have a look out there
and see what they've done with the rooms, and you can think about what you might do.
Cos we've got a good space here and the garden is fantastic.
-Maybe just think about how you might rearrange things...
-..To get the most out of it.
'Barbara thought the kitchen was small, but there is also a dining area,
'and a handy utility room.
'At the back of the house is another room, currently used as an office.'
I think you'll like this little room for many reasons.
We could put Terry in here to play that guitar.
-It's ideal for that, yeah.
-A little den. I also thought the parrots might like it.
-They could go in here.
-They would like it as well.
-Would you be able to co-exist with the parrots?
-I think so, yeah.
-Share the space, guitars, parrots?
-Yeah, they won't complain.
What do you think, seriously, about this room?
-Yeah, it's a nice size.
And the layout of what you've seen so far?
Personally I think it's a fair size area-wise,
but too many rooms, which makes them small rooms.
'So Terry thinks the rooms are too small,
'but I'm sure they'll like the three spacious ground-floor bedrooms.
'Let's take a look at what would be their room.'
-Quite a nice size.
-It's not bad.
You can fit a good double bed in here.
Lots of wardrobe space too.
-Yes, nice-size room.
-It's nice to have the...
It is a nice-size room.
For bedroom sizes, is this what you were looking for?
-I think this is what we were expecting, isn't it, really? Yeah.
-So the bedrooms get a thumbs up.
-The kitchen might need extending.
-Shall we have a look at the bathroom?
Just have a look in here.
-This is your family bathroom.
There's a bath with a shower over it just over there.
-And you have got some natural light from that skylight up there.
-Yeah! It's quite a compact little bathroom, isn't it?
-So downsizing, but you're feeling this is a downsize too far?
-I tell you something that's not too small.
-I defy you to tell me that this is too small, OK?
'They don't seem overly enthusiastic with this house,
'but I think they'll be impressed with the large outside space.'
So here we have the wonderful,
-This is lovely. Lovely garden.
-I get a "wow!"
-Yes, definitely the wow factor here.
-Cannot fault the garden.
-No, it's lovely.
-Quarter of an acre.
-And that's so unusual with this type of property.
To have such a huge garden. Yeah. It's lovely.
-OK, I think we should have a look at more of this garden.
Let's not stand up here, let's get down there.
'Things are looking up. The garden has won them over,
'and there's a whole lot more to see that should please Barbara.'
Lovely long walk up this garden!
-And back here...look at that.
-Wonderful vegetable plot.
I know you really like tending the vegetables, you've started already.
-Can't fault the garden at all.
-No, it's lovely.
It's a lovely garden.
Something you can see both of yourselves doing?
-Oh, this is fantastic, yes, definitely.
So! The all-important question.
I think this will have an influence on what you think of this property.
How much would you pay for it?
I would guess at 315, 320?
I would go...to 350, I think.
Right up to 350! We've got a big difference here.
-What if I told you it's on the market...
-A bit higher than you said, but lower than yours.
And, most importantly, below your budget.
-That's a nice price.
-That is a nice price. It's not a bad price at all.
-It can definitely be extended, so...
-It is a nice property.
Well, you've got a bit of thinking to do. Go back in, have another look around,
get thinking and we will talk later on.
-Off you go, I'll see you later.
I would say take the garage down, the shed, the greenhouse,
bring the drive up straight through, put a larger garage there.
I liked the look of the property on the outside, it was fine.
But it was a little bit too close to the neighbours.
Decor is absolutely lovely. It's my sort of taste.
-I'd have this as the main bedroom.
-Yeah. Got a nice feel to it.
Yes, I like this a lot better.
The property is not too small - just the issue of the rooms. There's so many rooms.
I like the property. The garden's brilliant, absolutely brilliant.
I think the location is fine. It's nice and sort of semi-rural, if you like.
-Lot to think about now, haven't you?
There is a lot to think about, yeah.
-Let's get moving on then, shall we?
As the sun sets over the Kent Downs, day one of our property search draws to a close
and Barbara and Terry head back to the hotel to reflect on all they've seen.
So, what did you think of the country cottage?
I liked it. I really liked it.
I liked the kitchen, I liked the lounge.
-The bedrooms were a bit small.
But I think I could live with that.
-Yeah, I think it was nice.
-What about the bungalow?
Rooms were a bit small.
I would have liked a bigger kitchen.
-So you could put a table in it.
The price, there was scope in what we hoped to get for ours to the difference.
We could extend it. The garden was beautiful, that had the wow factor, didn't it?
Yeah. But then, we've got properties to see tomorrow, so...
-Something might come up with everything we want.
-Let's hope it does.
'Today's house hunters are Terry and Barbara from Gillingham, Kent.
'They're looking for a new home for their retirement, still in Kent,
'but in a rural location or by the coast. So far they've seen one house that may be hard to beat.'
-It would suit us down to the ground.
'But there's still another superb home and a mystery property to come, which moves them to tears.'
You look almost emotional, Terry.
-Do you really like it?
It's the start of a bright new day and I have high hopes for our property search.
We've decided to try something new, because although Barbara and Terry are supposed to be downsizing,
I'm not sure they've grasped exactly what that means,
and size of room seems to be a big issue.
So let's find out if bigger is really better.
For our first property today, we're travelling towards the coast,
seven miles north of Canterbury to Herne Village. This sleepy community has loads of character
and being so close to the sea it's ideal for Barbara. The slower pace should keep Terry happy,
striking a perfect balance.
-We're only six miles away from Whitstable and we're very close to the sea as well.
-Is that a thumbs up?
-One of your daughters is in Whitstable.
-Close to the grandchildren. And here is the property.
-Oh, it's good.
-You like the look of the outside. It's got a garage there.
-Thumbs up, I think.
There are four bedrooms inside. I think we should get in and have a look. Let's go.
In we come. Out of the cold and into a lovely warm and big hallway.
-Yes, it's nice.
The stairs to the first floor. Some really good bedrooms up there.
And down here a long hallway. Come this way. Downstairs cloakroom.
-That's always handy.
-In here is your living room.
-This is a nice size.
-It's a great size.
-Yes, it is.
-nice feature fireplace.
-Lovely feature fireplace. It's in working order.
-For nice cosy winter evenings.
And on summer days or even blue sky winter days, the garden.
-Yeah, very nice.
-It's a nice size.
-It's the right kind of size for a living room for you?
-This is fine.
-You can imagine yourselves being comfortable?
-You like this so far?
-There's a lot more to it.
-Let's keep going.
Now we're into the kitchen. Barbara, this is the room for you. What do you think?
Yeah, this is a nice size. Lovely. The layout's perfect.
-I can see myself in here.
-How much time do you spend in your kitchen?
-A lot of time.
-A lot of time.
-Cooking. Chocolate cake.
I'm starting to get the feeling. So we'll have the baking going on in there, view onto the garden.
-That's perfect for baking.
-What are your thoughts, Terry?
-I think it's fine. Definitely.
-A thumbs up?
-Yes, it is.
-And you like this island.
-You could have breakfast here.
-Would you like somewhere for your formal dining?
-Perhaps there's something behind here.
-That's a nice size.
-Off the kitchen.
-Nice, reasonable room.
-You can imagine using it?
-Good! I think we're doing well so far.
-So far, so good. It's a big house and we've more rooms to see.
Out here we've got three more rooms I want to show you, starting here. Poke your head in there, Terry.
-Because that is the garage.
Oh, yes. Yeah.
-It's smaller than what we're used to.
-And you can't really extend it because of the positioning.
-So this could be a compromise issue.
-Yeah, it could well be.
Yeah? Something to think about.
'Opposite the garage is another small room which could home the parrots. At the end of the corridor
'is a downstairs bedroom with its own en suite.
'Let's look at the upstairs bedrooms, one of which is currently used as a study
'where Terry could play his guitar.
'The other would be ideal for the grandchildren. Next, the master.'
-This is a nice size.
-Similar to what we've got.
-And that means you could fit the bed in!
-Yes, I think it would go in there.
-Lying in bed,
looking out to the views.
'Also up here is a modern family bathroom and a separate shower.
'They seem more than happy with the interior.
We're heading out to see what they think of the garden.'
Out into the garden space... Together with the big house, you've got a fairly decent size here.
-Yes, a nice size.
Clearly the family that live here have children. We've got the big trampoline and the swings.
-Take all of that away and you could have a vegetable patch.
-I think so.
-Come over here. Have another look at the house.
-It's a nice big property.
-And we're close to the sea.
So how much do you think it's worth?
I think...it would be about 350.
-OK. Top end.
-I think slightly more than that.
I think probably more like 360, 365.
Well, how do you feel about me letting you know it's on the market at 50 quid short of £350,000?
-A bit lower than you thought.
-Definitely, yeah. A lot of house for the money.
-Yeah, it is.
-It's an interesting price.
-Your cogs are starting to turn.
-Head inside, keep thinking on it and I will see you later on.
A pleasant surprise there. I think Barbara does like it.
Terry was a bit shocked by the price, but even the price isn't winning him over. Will Barbara win?
What will they think of the size?
This house has got nice, good-sized rooms. I like the kitchen.
Very nice lounge. Comfortable.
-Our furniture would fit in.
-It's nice to have a log fire.
The garden is a good size, not overlooked. The location is quite nice for me
because I want to be by the sea.
Hello, you two. I was just enjoying the sunshine! Seen enough now?
-Good. A lot more to do. Let's go.
Terry and Barbara have a great passion for birds and currently own three talkative parrots.
So we sent them off to nearby Wingham Wildlife Park,
which offers a hands-on experience with a wide range of animals and birds.
They're here to meet zookeeper Tony Binskin, to learn more about these colourful characters.
Right then, this is Alfie. Come on then, Alfie.
Out you come.
He's a bit persistent about coming out. There we go.
If you put your arm out I'll put him on there.
There we go, put your arm round him, that's it, nice and close.
You love that, don't you?
You're gorgeous, aren't you?
-Cockatoo love to be stroked.
-If you look underneath, she's got a lovely pink crest.
-Look at that.
Beautiful colouring, yeah.
Do you think it's cruel to keep parrots in a cold climate?
No. They grow in another down, they "weather in," they call it.
And they find it ever so easy to sort themselves out.
As long as they've got an indoor quarters and an outdoor quarters they do OK.
The cockatoo seem happy enough.
Next, it's time to get acquainted with some birds of prey.
Marcus Lloyd-Parker explains how to handle them.
OK, this is Slug. Now, Slug's a bit of a cheeky chap,
I've had Slug's dad for 15 years now.
What I'm going to do is step him on to your hand.
Hold your hand nice and level and straight, make a perch for me.
Going to step him back, very gently.
He's very chatty and talkative at the moment.
OK, just keep it tidy. We're just going to put the leash up on the fingers there.
If you can just close your hand for me there.
And if he jumps around, don't let go. There we go.
Is this a hunting bird or here for show?
This particular bird is a hunting bird, used for catching rabbits.
All the birds here are used for the educational side of things.
Lots of handling, close up things. Some birds here go into schools as well.
Every bird here has a different job, be it hunting or flying, doing the demonstrations.
Everyone has their own little thing to do, really.
With more space in the countryside, I wouldn't be surprised if Terry and Barbara
expand their family of feathered friends soon.
Barbara and Terry's budget may not stretch to something as grand as this,
but it's time for the mystery property. I want to deliver them something with style and panache,
but they may have to compromise a little bit on the size and one other factor - it's attached.
-Time for the mystery property. How are you feeling?
-Looking forward to it.
-What would be ideal?
-We're coming up to retirement.
-I really would like detached.
Well, it's a mystery property. We'll shake things up a bit.
-Let's see how we do.
For our mystery property, we travel 10 miles north west of Canterbury to the outskirts of Faversham.
This market town is a real treasure trove of heritage.
It's home to Britain's oldest brewery, an array of listed buildings and tourists shops on tap.
Plenty here for the whole family.
They said they DIDN'T want attached. Oh, dear. The mystery house is semi-detached.
I hope the features of these beautiful stables win them over.
Walking, walking, walking. Not much longer, I promise. Here.
-So, are you ready?
-Three, two, one, open your eyes.
-Oh, my God, yeah.
-So, just to put you in the picture, it's not everything you see here!
-I realise that!
-It is quite impressive. There's houses there.
We've got the stables. Dates back to 1850. It was only converted from stables back in 2000.
-It's really beautiful.
-You don't know what to say!
While you collect your thoughts, let's go inside and have a look. It just gets better.
'They seem really taken by this house.
'My hunch might be spot on!'
-It's an old stable, but it's got a farmhouse feel. Straight into the kitchen here.
-Look at that.
-That is fantastic!
-Come and have a look.
-Yeah, that is...brilliant.
-I never expected to see anything like this.
-I thought you'd like the granite.
-It's what I've got already. Lovely.
-We've got limestone floors
-And the views.
-You're really impressed.
-It's lovely. It really is.
-Could you picture yourself here?
-Would you like to see more?
-There's another room through here. Let's go.
Come through here.
-This is lovely.
You look almost emotional, Terry.
-Do you really like it?
-It's OK. Do you know what?
When we first spoke and you said the house you live in, you'd both seen it separately
-and you had a feeling about it. Is that what's happening now?
Are you...? Ohh.
This is good! Good tears!
-And something you wouldn't have thought of.
Tell me what you're thinking.
I'm just speechless. It's just gorgeous.
-It's really gorgeous.
-What are you thinking, Terry?
-Out of this world.
-And it's something that we just didn't want, actually.
-I'm glad you pointed that out. It is, of course, semi-detached.
-Which was a no-no.
-..it is no more!
It is absolutely fantastic. Yeah.
Yeah, it is.
-It's such a surprise.
-It's taken you by surprise.
-It certainly has.
-Good. Shall we carry on? Are you ready?
-Come on, then.
-Let's keep going.
'With a reaction like that, this could be a home for them.'
So... the downstairs family bathroom.
-Have a quick look in here.
-It's a nice size.
-It's just got a bath down here. Is that OK?
I thought you might be upset there's no shower. Clearly not.
-No, it's lovely. Absolutely.
-So this works for you?
Let's look at the rest. 'Will there be anything they don't like?
'There are three bedrooms, two of which are on the ground floor and very pretty.'
-Wow. Oh, lovely.
-Oh, this is lovely, isn't it?
-What is it about this room?
-I just think it's lovely.
-It's just a gorgeous room.
-And you've got room for wardrobes.
-This is lovely.
-And it's so peaceful.
'They seem to have been impressed by every room so far. Let's hope that continues in the master.'
This will be your master bedroom.
-Oh, it's lovely. That is lovely.
-Another lovely room.
-You're both a little calmer now.
-Yes, calmed down!
-I'm impressed. You quite like this room?
-Tell me a little bit about what you're thinking.
What can you say? It's the style of the place altogether. It's...well, breathtaking. Lovely.
-I'm still a bit speechless.
-What's knocking you for six so much?
Looking at it from the outside and then coming in and seeing it,
-it's what I didn't expect it to be like.
-So this could be your dream property in the country?
-You wanted an en suite.
-Well, how about this?
Your very own shower room here.
-Come on in. Have a look.
-It's a good size.
-Yes, it is.
-You've got a stand-up shower there
-on the landing from your bedroom.
-Yeah, out of this world.
-You could have this bathroom and you have one downstairs!
-It's time we looked at that garden.
'I'm really pleased. It looks like the mystery house has been a risk worth taking,
'but it is attached. I hope the garden won't disappoint.'
Let's head outside. We're now, obviously, by your front door.
-This is the mystery property because it's something you wouldn't choose.
Let me put you in the picture. We've got three converted stables.
Your property, one next door and that one.
Here is the farmhouse. The lord of the manor who owned everything!
Then we've got the barn conversion. So this is a sort of communal area, although you'd own a bit of it.
-What do you think?
-Yes, it's unusual.
-It's just so pretty, isn't it?
-Not what you were planning.
-Something you could live with?
-If I twisted your arm. I'll show you the rest.
'Lawned grounds sweep around the property,
which includes car parking and a workshop to keep Terry happy.'
-And then behind here, all of this.
-This is just yours.
-Yes. Nice size. It's lovely.
-It's working for you?
-the time has come to talk money.
-I know it's on your mind, so come over here.
It's time we had a chat. I know it's been on your mind.
-It's a gorgeous property.
-It is. Really beautiful.
-Yes, it is.
-It's not something you would have looked at.
It's a mystery property for a reason, so let's talk money. How much do you think it's worth?
I personally think that it's going to be up over our budget.
A very difficult one to guess,
but I would say I quite expect it to be 375.
-375, OK. And Barbara?
-Yes, I think 365.
-So right at the top end.
-Well, it's on the market for £345,000.
-That's good and that's in our budget.
-I think a lot of thought has got to go into it, really.
-OK, it's time for you to go back inside.
-And start thinking.
-And we'll talk later on.
-Off you go.
What a reaction! They do absolutely love the property
and they were gobsmacked that it is not only within their budget, it's under it. Will they go for it?
They were clearly overwhelmed as soon as they walked in. Will they take the plunge?
The first impression of this property just blew me away.
It was totally unexpected.
The kitchen blew my mind. Beautiful.
A nice big chocolate cake in here!
Then we walked into this lounge and it just blew me away.
-I think our furniture would fit in nice.
-It would, lovely. Fantastic.
It would work very well for us.
As a retirement home, it's perfect.
-It would be lovely to have all the family round for Christmas.
-Christmas would be fantastic.
It's got everything you could possibly want. We've got to think if we want to be adjoined,
or, as we first said, detached.
-How are you both?
-Lots to think about now.
-You've seen all of the properties. Let's find somewhere to sit down and chew it over.
Barbara and Terry have now seen a real mix of properties, from a country cottage to semi-detached.
They have a lot to weigh up.
-Right, guys. We've had a bit of an emotional journey.
-Seen a lot of properties.
-Let's start at the very beginning with the country cottage.
-We loved it.
-We will go back to see it again.
Really? We haven't even talked about the others! You'll go back?
-What is it about it?
-The rural location, definitely.
-And the property had been refurbed in good taste.
-The garden was quite small.
-So what has grabbed you?
-There's only 13 properties in the area.
-So a really nice area.
-OK, so it was a good start.
-Yes, it was.
-Let's move on.
Let's talk about the bungalow that we saw next.
The bungalow was very nice, very well done inside,
and, well, beautiful garden. You couldn't fault the garden.
Yeah, it was a lovely property.
-but it's just the location.
There was no rural feel to it at all.
-It was a bit too close to the neighbours.
-It was. It was.
Let's talk about the chalet bungalow. What did you think?
-That was a lovely bungalow.
-Yeah. But it was too big. It's very similar in size to what we've got.
They were big rooms and nice rooms. The property itself, internally, was very nice indeed.
-So, finally, then...
-..the mystery property.
-This is something you wouldn't have looked at.
-It's out of this world. Still can't describe it
in words. It was a fantastic property. Absolutely fantastic.
It was a semi-detached, which we didn't want, but when you look at what it had to offer,
-you've got to say that it was just out of this world.
-The kitchen was to die for.
-Full credit to the present owners.
-It was fantastic.
I didn't expect the kitchen to be like it was, or the lounge.
I didn't expect three bedrooms, either. Fantastic.
-We're going to go back there.
-For a serious look.
So we've got two properties that you're going to have another look at. Both in your budget.
-One at the top end.
-And the last one, a nice surprise there.
-Was well within.
Well within. So, uh...
-So next step is a return to the area.
-Yes, that's right. Have a good look round.
OK, but if I have to push you at this moment,
-which one are the scales tipping in favour of?
-I'm still swaying for the country cottage, really.
But go back, have another look
-and I don't know...
-50/50 for the last one.
-A strong possibility we've found you your dream home?
-Yes, I think so.
Fantastic. I really am pleased.
Not one, but two properties! Brilliant!
-Let us know how you get on. It's been an absolute pleasure.
-It's been great, really great.
-Best of luck.
-With your escape!
What a surprise! This is what I absolutely love about this show.
We show them a mystery property they would never have considered and now it's in their top two!
They are actually considering it, which means we've done a good job!
All in all, they are one step closer to achieving their dream of escaping to the country.
If you long to escape to the country, and would like our help,
please contact us through our website:
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