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-Hello, welcome to the show.
-With the property market in a state of flux,
you really do have to make your own decisions. You've got to do your research and be competitive.
Yes, and the best thing is if you can see things for yourself.
And one way to do that is to visit your local property auction.
Thousands of properties go up for auction. There are loads of different types of lots on sale
-every month all over the country.
-So why not go down to your local auction room
and find out what is on sale? Here's the properties we've found for you for today's show.
'It sounds like the plans for this former studio in Fife struck the right note.'
What they're basically saying is, "We think this place should be redeveloped."
'This plot of land in Kent went to auction with an added bonus.'
It already has full planning permission granted to build two chalet bungalows here.
'In Cheshire, this bungalow needs a full refurbishment but the rooms are much bigger than I'd expected.'
So all in all, I have to say, I'm pleasantly surprised.
-'All these properties went to auction...'
-Thank you, sir.
'..and we'll find out who bought them and what they paid for them when they went under the hammer.'
'I'm in Cupar, Fife, an old market town that's on the up and looking to the future.'
And with the news that the council are ploughing literally millions of pounds into the area
to rejuvenate it, things can only get better.
'It's a charming place, for sure, and the property that went to auction is in a prime location,
'bang in the middle of town.'
The property I'm here to see had a guide price of just 50,000 quid.
So why the low guide?
Well, it's cos it's this. It's an old disused warehouse.
However, I have some news which could turn this ugly duckling
into a bit of a swan.
# There once was an ugly duckling
# With feathers all stubby and brown
# And the other birds in so many words said
# Get out of town
'The lot is made up of the former warehouse plus this ruined bothy.
'I'd get stonework checked out, but what we have here is a 300-plus square metre blank canvas
'with plenty of scope for improvement.'
Until relatively recently, it was used for, well,
the CDs should give it away, a recording studio.
Prior to that, it was a snooker hall.
'There's a distinct lack of natural light on the ground floor
'but unbricking those windows would transform the place in a jiffy.
'Beyond that, well, it's potential, potential, potential.'
So, what's the good news? Well, the local council did a public consultation
about the general plan for the area
and when it came to talking about this site in particular,
it says, and I quote, "The site is a development opportunity". Fantastic.
"Preferred use is housing." Even better.
"It has the potential to contribute to the housing land supply,
"the revitalisation of the town centre, the local infrastructure and amenities."
They're basically saying, "We think this place should be redeveloped."
It hasn't got planning yet, but if the council's saying that,
you're pretty convinced that you're going to get it.
What can you build on here? Flats, houses, who cares?
It's a money-making opportunity.
'We're not talking break-even here, we're talking maximum break, pot black
'and any other snooker metaphor you'd care to mention.
'There's tonnes more space upstairs,
'room for two generous two-bedroom flats at least.
'The same could potentially be built downstairs.
'And don't forget the dilapidated bothy out back.
'The development possibilities are endless.
'We spoke to the auctioneer who sold it to see if he's snooker-loopy
'about the property.'
I think the building offers a lot of opportunities.
We're very close to the town centre.
In the local plan, it's identified as
a site for redevelopment and the preferred option is residential use.
'If residential use it is,
'what could be the best way forward for this former snooker hall?'
Probably, if you're looking at a conversion, it's flats.
And I think that probably, in the current market, is the best way forward.
I suppose you could knock the whole thing down and start again
and put in a couple of detached or semi-detached units.
I really think it's a flatted scheme rather than houses, shall we say.
'There's scope here for four flats at the very least.
'How much does the auctioneer think they might sell for?'
If we're talking two-bed flats, in Cupar,
we're roughly talking about around £100,000 per unit, perhaps a little less.
'And if rented out?'
In terms of rental values, probably £450 to £550 per calendar month.
Well, even without the planning permission being in place,
I reckon the potential for this property is enormous.
And it is a bit of a developer's dream.
Let's see who spotted it when it went under the hammer.
'This lot was one of the later ones which explains the empty seats.'
Interesting property, this. Residential potential here.
What are we going to say for that? Somebody start me at £50,000.
40 to get me going. 30 anywhere?
Is that a 20? Thank you, sir.
20 sitting down in the body of the room.
£20,000. Have I got 25 anywhere?
Thank you, sir. Sitting down, 25.
30? 30. 35? 35.
It's with you, sir, in the blue at £40,000.
Looking for 41 anywhere? 41 down here. 42. 3.
46. Blue top, in the middle, £46,000.
I'm going to sell at 46 if that's the best we can do.
Are we all done? With the gentleman in the blue at £46,000.
Twice. Third and final time.
-£46,000, gentleman in the blue. Thank you very much.
'The successful bid of £46,000 was made by Steve.
'He retired from the Air Force five years ago and started developing property full-time.
'He'll be assisted on this development by his three sons,
'Jason, Michael and Stephen.'
# The boys are back in town
# The boys are back in town, boys are back in town
'I met up with Steve and his son Stephen back at the property.'
Steve and Stephen, good to meet you both. Congratulations. Why did you want to buy this place?
I love a bargain, like a challenge and I think it's something we can make flats out of.
-Tell me more about you.
-I got involved in property six or seven years ago on a more serious scale.
I did renovations on and off since leaving the Air Force.
The boys left school, started to come and work with me.
Young Stephen joined the Air Force for a few years, came back,
he's now my right-hand man. If I'm not there, Stephen will keep things ticking along.
So family business. That's great. Tell me who's involved.
Well, we've got Dad at the top, and when he's not around, I'm running the show
with help from my two younger brothers who are both keen joiners.
Was it a natural progression for you all to go into this?
Well, my first memory is when I was seven, stone-picking for ten pence a bucket of stones in the garden.
And it's kind of just gone on from there. We've learnt to drive the diggers
and learn the skills off the tradesmen, right up until now, basically.
Driving diggers as a boy! That must have been fantastic!
-Brilliant fun. Especially on the farms.
-How does it work, working together as a family?
90 percent of the time, it's OK. There are a few times where Steve and I have a disagreement
and he's bigger than me, but that means nothing. THEY LAUGH
Then we come to a compromise and at the end of the day, the job has to get done and that's why we're here,
-to get the end result.
-You cannot agree on everything all the time.
-We have different opinions on some things.
-Was it always your intention to get your sons involved in the business?
It was up to them to take their own paths and whichever way they wanted to go, we encouraged them.
And they just kept on coming back, working for me, so it seemed to work.
Good workers, I know them, they know me, and we just seen to work well, so it's a good team.
But I guess paying them 10p for a bucket of stones was a good place to start.
It's actually only 15p for a bucket now. That's why I keep them employed.
No, I'm only joking. But it's a good way of getting them learning,
cos at the end of the day, you've got to take care of your pennies and appreciate what you've got,
cos it doesn't come easy, and that was what it was all about, another learning skill.
'So these local boys have been well trained by their dad.
'But what's in store for the old snooker hall?'
OK, so why this place?
Because it's on our doorstep.
It's easy. This, to me, is an absolute doddle.
I would buy these all day long if they kept coming up.
The footprint and size for the money we paid, you can't go wrong. We'll retain 70 percent of this building
to reuse, so it's not a big job to convert this into units, that we're looking to do.
Steve, what do you think about this project?
I think it's a cracking project. It is right on our doorstep.
Our workshop is literally round the corner.
And most of the work is internal partitions. There's only a few extensions to be put on.
And it's stuff we do every day.
-Tell me exactly what you're planning to do here.
-We're going to convert this into four residential units.
This wall will be taken down and extended out to give us more room on this smaller side of the building.
And then as Steve said, the main part is ready, that's only internal partitions.
Open up the existing windows, new services, drainage and central heating to be installed.
We'll be looking to put a two-bedroom house in the bothy.
So no problems there. But there is a problem in that there isn't any planning.
No. I've spoke to the planners. We've had them on site for a meeting and they seem to be in favour of...
These smaller units in towns like this, they're looking for residential units cos there's a shortage.
We've got a lot of stuff for rent round about this area
and there's not enough rental properties available.
So that's why this is good for them, cos it keeps their council house list down.
They're taking on properties from the private sector to rent because there's not enough.
But with planning, there always is the possibility that it might be turned down.
That is a gamble. Life is a gamble. But for £46,000, I don't see it as a gamble.
Having done this for a number of years, you get to feel...
You get an inkling for what's going to be in and what's not,
and having had a site meeting with the planners,
-they seemed to be in favour. I don't think it'll be a problem.
-What kind of costs have you got for it?
-I'm expecting it shouldn't be any more than about £100,000.
-To renovate this into five units.
I don't take a wage. I don't have a salary.
My salary comes at the end, or when I get a rent, I'll take that.
When I do a project, I don't go, "I'm going to make £20,000".
Whatever's left is what I make. When you start something, you've got to keep spending till it's done.
Do you have any idea of the sort of total potential value of things
-once it's all done?
-On this site, if I get the planning for the bothy, probably half a million pounds.
-And it's going to cost you 150 in total.
So potentially, then, £350,00 profit.
-Yeah, well, it's just...
-And that's the other reason why we did it, as well as it being on the doorstep.
This is my nest egg. This is the last one for me.
Then it's time for me to go and start enjoying life. I've worked since I can remember, so this is my exit.
So after this, the boys are on their own. HE LAUGHS
Good luck with it. We look forward to seeing how you get on.
Well, from buckets of stone for 10p to bucketloads of potential profit on this place.
350,000 quid. Wow!
Still, there is that all-important planning permission to get first.
Find out how this family of developers gets on later in the show.
'This is Ashford in Kent. The journey time from London via high-speed train
'is now less than 40 minutes, and what's more,
'it's been earmarked by the government as a key growth area for the South East.
'So there'll be 13,000 new homes built here by 2016.'
We're actually in a suburb of Ashford today in a place called Kennington.
It's about a mile and a half from the town centre.
This place was built as a local authority housing estate.
But I'm not here to see a house today. I'm here to see a plot of land.
And it's accessed down this little track.
'The guide price at auction for this plot was set between 60,000 and 70,000.'
So here it is. Now, I know this plot was formally council-owned
and was once occupied by garages which, as you can see, have since been cleared.
Now, it is a good rectangular shape,
it's pretty even and because it's surrounded by houses,
there's access to all the services. Water, electricity, gas.
So it shouldn't be an issue getting any of those connected.
And even better, it already has full planning permission granted to build two chalet bungalows here.
'Finding a plot which already has full planning permission will save a lot of time.
'As soon as the land's yours, you can pretty much start building straight away.'
So here are the proposed plans that have been passed.
Now, it's quite interesting to look at it on paper. You've got two semi-detached chalet bungalows here.
This is the front elevation, which will actually sit this way round
with the car parking to the front.
And this is the rear elevation here.
Now, once you go inside, you've got two bedrooms.
And on the ground floor, you've got a really nice dining lounge area,
a study, a little kitchen and a bathroom. That's all on the ground floor.
Then upstairs on the first floor, you've got bedroom one, bedroom two and a very small en suite.
So it offers two bathrooms. And it's all looking rather good.
'So plans are approved for two chalet bungalows,
'a style of bungalow with living space on the first floor.
'Of course, you could choose to build something else completely,
'but any major changes would mean going through the planning process again,
'which could add months to your schedule.'
So far, it's all looking rather good.
Just one slight issue. There is a public right of way here,
a footpath which has to stay.
On the plans, it does go across the bottom of the parking area,
so it shouldn't be too intrusive.
I've been here all morning and I've not seen a soul,
so it's something I don't think I'd worry about too much.
# Let's build a house where we can stay
'Time to start building, you might think. But will you be able to sell what you've built?
'Let's ask a local estate agent
'what he thinks of the proposed development.'
The layout of the properties I think is absolutely fine.
You've got parking spaces, which is fantastic, and rear garden.
You've also got an en suite to the master bedroom,
and given the fact that the main bathroom is on the ground floor,
that's an added benefit. Also there's a study,
adding to the living space downstairs.
# Let's build
'So if you went ahead and built the two two-bed semis as per the plans,
'would you be able to let them out and what rent could you get for them?'
You don't see many properties around here come onto the rental market.
Being an ex-local authority area could deter some people.
I would say a rental value of around 625 to 650 per calendar month.
'But, of course, once you've built them, you might want to sell them.
'So what could that make?'
Once the properties have been built, I'd estimate a resale value of £160,000 to £170,000.
So a plot with planning and full planning permission at that.
If this was my land, I'd go with what's already been passed
and I'd start building those two semi-detached bungalows straight away, no delays.
A lot of the hard work has already been done here.
But will the new owners stick to the plans or will they go their own way?
We can find out who bought it when we head to auction.
We move to Ashford, to Kennington to be precise.
It's got planning permission for two chalet bungalows.
Guided at 60 to 70. What may I say? Start me at £60,000?
May I hear 60? 60 I have. Thank you.
£60,000 is bid. 62. And 64?
64 is bid. And 66?
66. And 68? 68 I have.
And 70. 72 in a fresh place. 74.
74 is bid. And 76 I have. 78?
78 is bid. And 80 I have. And 82?
82 I have. 84 is bid. And 86?
86 is bid. 88 I have. And 90?
90 is bid. 92 is bid.
And 94 on my right hand side. 96?
96 is bid. 98 is bid.
100? 100 I have. 102.
And 5. 108.
108 is bid. And 110.
110 is bid. 112 is bid.
115 I have. 118 is bid. 120?
120 is bid. 122.
125. 128. And 130.
130 is bid. 132 is bid.
134 do I see? Being sold, then, for the first time at 132.
Gentleman's bid on the right hand side unless I see another bid. 132,000 for the second.
£132,000 for the third and final call.
-Are you all done?
-Sold at £132,000.
'The plot finally sold for nearly twice the original guide price
'and the buyers didn't even bid themselves.
'The new owners are local couple Angela and Bob.
'They've had their eye on this particular plot for years
'and even tried to buy it from the council several times before it went to auction.
'But why was Angela so keen on the plot but not so keen on the bidding?'
Angela, congratulations. Great to meet you.
-Why did you choose a family friend to bid for you?
Because my husband and I were so nervous and we didn't have a clue,
we've never been to an auction, so we wanted someone...
He's been before, he's bought land before, so he was the ideal person.
-You did pay considerably over the guide price.
-Yes, we did.
Did you expect to go to that sort of level?
We didn't really have a ceiling, because we desperately wanted this piece of land
and whatever it would've gone to, we would've paid, really.
I know this site comes with planning permission for two chalet bungalows.
-So what's the plan? Are you not thinking about living in one and selling the other?
Our son, who's 29 now, had an accident ten years ago.
He lives with us in our house. My husband built a room on the back
and a shower room on the front for him to come and live with us, cos he's wheelchair-bound.
And he needs to have his own independent living accommodation.
And this is what we're going to build on this land.
A purpose-built bungalow for Paul
with living accommodation upstairs for carers
so that he can live independent from us and it's local to us,
his brother, the people that he's grown up with all his life.
We've lived in Kennington for 30 years, so it's absolutely... It'll never come again.
-So that's why we needed to get this plot of land.
-Wow. That really is such an incredible story.
-This has got your name on it.
-You had to have this!
'So Paul, pictured here with his dad Bob, is wheelchair-bound and not able to communication fully.
'He'll be coming to live in a house purpose-built for him on this plot.
'The family had to get this piece of land as it backs directly onto the garden of Paul's brother Keith.'
So you're not planning on building two properties here?
No, just one. The same footprint size as the two,
but my husband said to tweak it and to make it into one bungalow.
Have you already spoken to the council?
An architect on our behalf has spoken to the council
and sent in an outline of what we'd like to do.
This is before we went to the auction, to make sure that it was viable,
and without committing themselves, they said they could see no problem with it
because it wasn't going to go higher or further.
-Have you got any potential builders?
-He's a builder?
-Yeah, he's a builder.
-And my sons are ground workers.
One's an electrician, and they both do ground works.
So it's in the family. We're going to build it as a family.
'This build's really going to be a family affair.
'They will all pull together to build Paul his own home
'with a constant supply of cups of tea coming over the fence from Keith's house.'
So tell me, how does Paul feel about this? Is he excited?
He's absolutely over the moon. Yeah, he can't believe it.
He's really excited. He keeps saying, "Come on, Bob".
Cos he calls my husband, even though he's his dad, he calls him Bob.
"Come on, Bob, go and start it!" And it was Keith's birthday on the 5th, Sunday,
and he bought Keith a spade to start coming to dig!
It's just going to be a life-changing thing for him, isn't it?
Absolutely. And he'll be able to play his music as loud as he wants, which he loves to do.
So it'll be a dream come true for him. An absolute dream.
'The family waited so long to get this plot
'that they want to make sure there are no more delays.
'They've already got new plans drawn up for one bespoke chalet bungalow.'
-Talk me through what we've got on the ground floor.
-You come into the main entrance
and then a lovely open-plan living/dining area for Paul.
Straight on to a kitchen, no doors or anything.
And then back along the corridor, this will be his wet room straight off from his bedroom,
so he doesn't have to come out into any other areas. Like a disabled en suite.
-So he doesn't have to get in and out of a bath. He can do all of that by himself.
-Where's the hi-fi?
-Where's that music centre going?
I'd imagine in here.
'Paul's been involved with the plans since the word go.
'He'll be choosing all the colour schemes, carpets and curtains.
'They've got a budget of £60,000 and estimate it will take six months to complete the build.
'And it won't just be Paul who will live here.'
The upstairs will be where the live-in carer will live.
They'll do it on a rota basis, two weeks on, two weeks off.
As Paul lives downstairs, they've got to live there like you would live in your own home.
So you've got to make it comfortable for them. It's not like coming in for two hours a day.
So it's got to be quite comfortable for them, as well.
It's been lovely to meet you. I'm so excited to see the outcome of this property.
-Good luck to you and your family.
-Thank you very much.
Well, that is a great outcome for Angela and Bob.
They've had their eye on this plot for a long time
and their patience has finally paid off and they now own it!
Not only that, building a bungalow here for their son
will mean a fresh start for everyone and much-deserved independence for Paul.
But they still have to get their new plans approved before they can start building.
Well, we'll be back later in the show to find out how they get on.
'Coming up, in Cheshire, you could be knocked out by this bungalow.'
That, er, carpet-wallpaper combination certainly hits you as soon as you come in.
'We return to Kent and the wait's been worth it, as Paul's about to move into his new home.'
A little bit longer than what we thought, but we've got there.
'But first back to Fife, where Steve's sons have been busy.'
As far as the hands-on work is concerned, all three of us were on site all year.
'Time now to return to the Fife town of Cupar.
'This derelict warehouse building, formerly a recording studio and snooker hall,
'was bought at auction for £46,000 by full-time property developer Steve.
'He works with his three sons and they had some ambitious plans for the site,
'which they hoped wouldn't be snookered by the planners.'
-Tell me exactly what you're planning to do here.
-We're going to convert this into four residential units.
This wall will be taken down and extended out to give us more room in this small side of the building
and the main part is actually ready. That's only internal partitions.
And we'll be looking to put a two-bedroom house in the bothy.
'Steve was hoping this would be his final big job
'before handing everything over to his sons so he could enjoy the fruits of his labour.'
This is my nest egg. This is the last one for me and then it's time for me to go and start enjoying life.
I've worked since I can remember, so this is my exit. After this, the boys are on their own.
'It's now 14 months later and we're back to meet Steve's eldest son Stephen.
'And they've certainly been busy boys.
'They've turned the dilapidated site into five residential units.
'The old warehouse is now four separate flats.
'On the left, a two-bed on the first floor and a three-bed on the ground.
'And in the middle, a three-bed on the first floor and a two-bed on the ground.
'But the piece de resistance is the old bothy,
'which has been turned into a fabulous two-bedroom townhouse.
'Downstairs, the open-plan kitchen-diner has the same flooring throughout,
'and there's a separate cloakroom.
'These stairs lead up to the first floor and I do hope Steve's going to fit a handrail.
'Upstairs, the L-shaped bathroom does make better use of the space, as it's not that big.'
It's essentially a townhouse which, although it's semi-detached, is actually off the original building.
This was a courtyard when we bought it, so there was literally one wall at the back.
And now it's a two-bedroom house.
'Steve liked it so much, he's moved in, and he's already right at home,
'having turned one of the bedrooms into his own entertainment area.
'The four flats in the warehouse are all tenanted,
'but we got access to the two-bedroom flat on the first floor.
'Not surprisingly, the layout has completely changed.
'The windowless recording studio now has a double-aspect living room.
'It's been transformed from a dingy old warehouse
'into a contemporary two-bedroom flat.
'The boys really have done a great job.
'But building on a site like this certainly wasn't without its challenges.'
We're actually standing at the back of the building here.
It presented a few problems in the sense that it's actually three metres lower down than the front.
We couldn't get access to the back as it's blocked at both ends,
and tiles and the timber trusses were brought from the front of the building,
which was a laborious exercise in itself.
Eventually, we'd like to get access from the bottom for all the flats,
open it back up again and then maybe have a drying area in the garden to the side for the tenants, as well.
'On top of that, they've bought the adjacent land on which they're hoping to build more houses.
'This monster project has required the whole family to pitch in.'
All four of us were on site pretty much the whole of the time.
Dad did a lot of organising, which requires going to merchants and the architects and stuff.
But as far as the hands-on work is concerned, all three of us were on site for the whole year.
'This has been a really huge endeavour and I can't help but notice that Dad's not around.
'So where is he now?'
Unfortunately, my dad's on holiday at the moment. He's on a sailing course.
So that's why he's not here.
'Can't blame him. A well-earned rest after that mammoth job.
'How much have they had to spend to get the properties to this stage?'
We've spent about £250,000 so far, and that's with buying the land next door, as well.
So we've done pretty well to get five units and a new plot out of that, I think.
'Time to find out what two local property experts think
'of the former snooker room and recording studio.'
'Has it got the X factor to be a hit?'
What a transformation! Dark, dingy studios
are now a very light, bright development of flats and houses.
I think they've done extremely well to fit this amount of accommodation
into this space. I particularly like the fact that they've got
open-plan living areas. The combined kitchen and lounge works very well.
I understand that they had acquired the land on the right hand side of the access drive.
I think that's an excellent investment.
'Steve's moved into the three-bed house and his brothers and his dad
'have let the four flats out already. What's the going rate?'
The rental market in Cupar seems to be quite widely spread.
There is evidence suggesting that two-bed flats
possibly would go for around about £500 per calendar month,
up to about £750 per calendar month.
I think, for the two-bedroom flats, you should be looking to achieve £500 per calendar month.
For the three-bedroom, slightly more £525 per calendar month.
'Well, their tenants are paying £500 per calendar month for the two-bedroom flats
'and they're getting £550 per calendar month for the three-beds.
'So how much could the whole development now be worth?
'They paid £46,000 at the auction
'and have spent £250,000 including buying the extra land.
'A total of just under £300,000.'
I think if you were aiming the property at an investor trying to buy the whole accommodation,
you should be looking to achieve between £390,000 and £420,000.
If you put the entire property on the market,
you're probably talking somewhere between £550,000 and £600,000.
'That valuation range, from £390,000 to £600,000,
'could generate an estimated profit of between £90,000 and £300,000.
'Quite a wide margin. But the family have no plans to sell.'
At the moment, we're just looking to rent them out.
Once we develop the land next door,
if we put townhouses or flats on there, we'll rent them out
and just keep them going as rental properties, I think, until the market picks up.
'Now that the reins of the business have been handed over to Stephen,
'what's he learnt about buying at auction?'
Don't be hasty in what you buy. Look for the bargain. And be prepared to put in a lot of hard work.
Cos if no-one else is bidding, there's a lot of work to be done.
Well, I'm 16 miles from the centre of Manchester, in the Cheshire village of Mobberley.
Now, there has been a church here since Norman times,
and the oldest parts of this date back to 1245.
But they extended the roof and widened the aisles in 1450.
And in 1533 they added the tower.
Which all goes to prove we've always loved property restoration.
'Set in the North Cheshire green belt, Mobberley is a rural village surrounded by fields.
'It's one of England's oldest parishes. And just a short walk from the church is this area.'
Well, right by the property I'm here to see you've got a parade of shops.
You've got a chemist, you've got a takeaway, you have a bakers there.
That's fantastic, because I'm here to see a bungalow,
which might suit somebody who, maybe not that easy for them to walk so far.
So that kind of facility is great to have on hand.
It's in this pleasant line of similar bungalows with a guide price of 95,000 quid.
Let's take a look.
'Well, you can't argue about the location, and as it's a popular cul-de-sac,
'with a retired population, what more could you ask?
'If you can see past the slightly overgrown garden, it's rather sweet.'
So what have we got? Wow! Gosh!
That carpet-wallpaper combination hits you as soon as you come in.
A bit of redecoration required, methinks.
But not a bad size. From the size of the bungalow on the outside, it's not going to be huge.
But I'm pleasantly surprised. Bedroom one there, bedroom two at the back.
Your loo there and through to the dining room. Again, not a bad size.
Different carpet again. Hm. An old fireplace. Get that checked out.
I think there's an open fire in there, which is quite good. A nice focal point.
Then through to the kitchen.
Now, clearly it is in need of a bit of tarting up.
But not a bad size space. I'm pleasantly surprised, if a little dazzled by the wallpaper.
'Tastes have changed in recent times. And if you're looking to buy a house to do up and sell on,
'the key word when it comes to decoration is neutral.
'Clearly someone has given this place a really personal touch.
'But, sadly, that won't appeal to the modern market.
'Still, at least we can sit back and enjoy the flowers.'
# Flowers, yeah
# Flowers, yeah
'But does the garden hold as many floral delights?'
So, out of the rear of the property you've got a garden.
One nice thing, you've got a separate entrance to it there, down a covered alleyway.
Flagstones, some outbuildings here,
quite useful storage space, or maybe a place for a washing machine.
As I said, flagstones here, a bit of grass. The garden does need a bit of tender loving care.
But I like the fact that you've got privacy, but a reasonable amount of space. So, yeah, a big tick.
'This all seems pretty straightforward, a well-proportioned property in good condition.
'All it needs is a decor overhaul, upgrades to the kitchen and bathroom and some TLC in the garden.
'But hold on, this is a bungalow, and what's the most obvious way to add value to one of these?
'Yep. Check out the roof space.'
Well, you've got a decent enough size entry up into the loft there.
And from the outside, it looks like you've got enough roof height.
One thing I would like to check out is the actual construction of the roof,
to see if it's going to be easy or not to put that dormer in.
And then it's going to come down to a question of cost.
How much is it going to cost to do it, and how much will it add to the value of the property?
And then you make your decision.
'We invited a local estate agent round to see what he thought.'
The bungalow does require modernisation. It's rather tired and dated.
But great location. It's got the basics here.
It's double-glazed, but it does now want central heating,
a general scheme of decoration, carpets, curtains, kitchen and a bathroom.
'How much might it cost to get this place up to scratch?'
The layperson would probably spend between £15,000 and £20,000 on modernising the bungalow.
If you're handy, you can do it for a lot less.
'This property had an auction guide price of £95,000.
'But once renovated, how much could you sell it or rent it out for?'
Likely resale value of the bungalow once fully modernised is probably in the region of £150,000.
Likely rental value is between £600 and £650 per calendar month.
Well, really nothing to dislike about this bungalow, apart from possibly the decor.
And with similar properties selling for around the £150,000 mark,
if it was bought for anything like that £95,000 guide price, there's money to be made.
Let's see who bought it when it went under the hammer.
Guide on this I think is a sensible guide.
I've got a bid at 90,000, any advance on 90?
I'll take 92. 92,000 then.
94,000. 94. 96. 96,000. 98.
100. 100,000. At 100,000. 101 on the phone.
At 100 I have, at 101. 101. 102. 103.
104. 105? 105. 106. 107.
107. 108. 109. 110.
111. There's three of you now. 111.
112. 113. 114.
115. 116. 117.
118. 119. 120? No, 500?
119,500. 120. could be the last bid, I think it might be. 120.
At 120,000 for the first time. 120 and a half, he's back in. 121?
At 120,500. 121? Yes? No?
121. No. At £121,000 for the first time.
Second time at £121,000. Are we all done at £121,000?
That's yours at 121, paddle 462.
'With their successful bid of £121,000, £26,000 over the guide price,
'were friends Kevin, on the left, and Graham, on the right.
'They both have a background in gardening and landscaping.
'I caught up with them at the bungalow to find out what made them dig so deep for this place.'
# Just the two of us
-Graham, Kevin, good to meet you both. Congratulations.
-Pleased to meet you.
Tell me why you wanted to buy the bungalow.
-Kevin came up with the idea.
-That's right, yeah.
It came up for sale at auction. We thought it could be a good investment.
We could buy it right at the auction, so we went. Paid slightly over the odds, didn't we?
-That's right, yeah.
-More than we expected to pay for it. We bought it. We're going to do it all up,
-modernise it, put it back on the market quick as we can.
-Easy as that. So it was your idea?
That's right, yes. My idea. I've lived in the village all my life, more or less, until I got married.
These properties don't come up for sale very often.
Erm, and when they have come up for sale, they have sold very quickly.
-I own the one next door, as well.
-You own the one next door?
-Which I rent out.
This one, me and Graham are in partnership to do it up.
It's a nice little venture for us both, turn it around and hopefully make a small profit.
That's the idea. Nice desirable bungalow in a nice area.
-What about the property next door, literally next door?
-Literally next door, yeah. Joined to this.
My gran used to live there. We've owned the property for eight years. We rent it out now.
It's been rented out for about the last three years.
It's a good return, so I'll always keep hold of that, never sell that. That's my roots back to the village.
-Probably wants to retire there himself.
-Maybe one day, you never know.
'The time to retire is a while away if these two are planning to get into the property development game.
'And what better place to start than right next door to a house you already own?
'Graham and Kevin are sure this is a sound investment and are keen to get cracking pronto.'
Starting over the weekend, ripping everything out and we're starting the joiner to put a new kitchen in,
then the heating engineers are coming in to kit all the heating system out, boiler and gas.
Then it's a matter of redecorating the bungalow afterwards.
-So what about budget, how much are you spending?
-We are looking at spending £9,000
on remodernising the complete house, including estate agents fees, as well, if possible.
Fairly tight as we went over budget at auction. That's what we're aiming for.
-We will be hands-on ourselves.
-We'll strip all the wallpaper. Do the painting, emulsioning ourselves.
The garden, we'll do between us. We'll reflag it and put a lawn at the back.
-Replant it out, that's our business anyway.
-Oh, is it? What?
-I have a wholesale nursery.
-Kevin's got a wholesale nursery and landscape business.
-So that side of it, not a problem at all.
-We should be able to do the outside between us.
The front garden will have to be nice because first impressions count. First thing people see.
-Right. So timescale for doing it all?
-Six weeks. Start to finish.
-Everybody is in place ready to start now. So we're looking forward to it.
-And then on the market.
-Straight on the market.
-In terms of what you expect you might get for this, how much?
We expect to get £150,000 for it. We do feel it is worth £150,000.
One has recently sold for around that price. We are going to put it on for a little bit more,
just see how things go, maybe give it three or four weeks, see what interest is created.
-We can always come down in price.
-We can always come down.
-We think the bottom line is £150,000.
-So that will leave you £10,000 each, if you're splitting it.
-£20,000 in total.
-For a six week project...
-That's very good.
-Is this the first venture between the two of you?
-First joint venture, yes.
Are you nervous about that?
No, we've known each other that long, we trust each other so there's not a problem there at all.
-How do you know each other?
-I used to work for Graham when I was 18.
We've been good friends and good work colleagues ever since.
So that's how we know each other.
-It's about 30 years now.
-It is, yeah.
It's taken you a while to get together to run a business, though.
-It has, yes.
-We've done business together plant-wise, nursery-wise.
That's right, but not property, no.
Well, Graham and Kevin clearly know the area and the property well.
But I think they may well have just spent a little bit too much, which means that budget has been squeezed.
Can they do it for £9,000? And in just six weeks? You can find out later in the show.
Well, time waits for no man, and the weeks and months have passed.
-So, have those properties changed?
-Here's the moment of truth. Let's find out.
'Earlier in the programme, in the Kent town of Kennington near Ashford,
'this building plot was bought for £132,000 by Angela and her husband Bob
'who live about five minutes away.
'Angela works in a supermarket and Bob is a bricklayer.
'The plot had planning permission for a pair of two-bed semis.
'But they planned to resubmit revised plans for one single chalet bungalow.
'It wasn't for themselves but for their 29 year-old son Paul,
'who's wheelchair-bound after being knocked over by a car ten years ago.'
He lives with us in our house. My husband built a room on the back
and a shower room on the front for him to live with us because he's wheelchair-bound.
He's 29 and he needs to have his own independent living accommodation.
And this is what we're going to build on this land,
a purpose-built bungalow for Paul, with living accommodation upstairs for carers
so he can live independent from us, because we won't be here forever.
'Angela and Bob have lived locally for 30 years and have three sons and a daughter, all in their twenties.
'Paul is the eldest and his two brothers, who are both builders,
'were going to help their dad, Bob, build the house.
'Well, 17 months later, we've returned.
'And back at the plot, Paul's chalet bungalow is built.
'The property, which sits centrally on the plot, has yet to be landscaped at the front.
'But Paul's entrance ramp is already there.
'At the back, a large patio has already been laid, giving Paul plenty of space to move around.
'Inside, to the left of the large entrance hall, is the living room.
'It's currently home to the appliances that are yet to be installed
'in the beautiful kitchen that overlooks the patio.
'At the other end of the bungalow, right of the entrance hall,
'this bedroom is almost ready for Paul to move into.'
Well, this is Paul's bedroom. It's really big and spacious because Paul's got a massive wheelchair.
It takes up a lot of room, a lot of turning space. And he's got an adjustable bed, higher and lower bed.
So we need lots of room for that. And then this is Paul's wet room, which is purposely built.
Lovely wide doors so they can wheel him in in a shower chair. Loads of room, then back out into his bedroom.
'Work couldn't start for about four months until revised planning permission was granted.
'But how did the timetable pan out after that?'
We started building about a year ago. And we're pretty sure we're going to be finished in a couple of months.
A little bit longer than what we thought, but we've got there.
'The bungalow has been designed to give Paul the necessary space he needs to manoeuvre his wheelchair,
'wide corridors and door openings, and low windows so he can see out.
'And Paul needs help 24 hours a day.'
He has to have a carer, so the carer has got an independent bedroom of their own, with a built-in en suite.
And then upstairs there's a completely self-contained flat.
'Angela and Bob hope the upstairs accommodation could potentially generate an income for Paul.
'There's no separate access, so it could only be let to a family friend.
'But the first tenants are already lined up.'
Right, this is upstairs.
This is a self-contained flat with a kitchen, dining room, living room and shower room,
and this is where my daughter and her partner are coming to live.
Actually she is going to be the sleep-in carer at night.
'The location of the building plot couldn't have been better, five minutes from Angela and Bob.
'It also adjoins Paul's brother's house. That's why they paid almost double the guide price to secure it.
'But did they manage to stick to their projected build cost for the bungalow of £60,000?'
Well, we purchased the land for £135,000.
And we're pretty sure we've spent about £150,000 building it.
But that will be furnished and complete. £150,000.
'Time to hear what two local estate agents think of the bungalow.'
My first impression is it's a beautifully-built property, very high standard of finish.
Nicely secluded away from the road.
Perhaps a bit over spec for the area.
But when you get here, it's a lovely result.
I saw the plot of land before the property was built.
They've made best use of the space for its intended use.
The ground floor layout is very wide, very spacious, very open.
The outside space will include a tarmaced driveway, ramps for the gentleman who is going to live here,
and a patio space at the back, all paved, beautifully done.
As a self-contained area the upstairs works well. But if it was a traditional build,
the room sizes would probably be too large. But for its intended use, it works very well.
'The building plot cost £135,000 and they've spent £150,000 getting the house built.
'Making a total of £285,000. What could it now be worth?'
The resale value of this property would be in the region of £240,000 to £250,000.
On resale value, in line with other properties in the area and its size,
I see a resale value of £240,000 to £250,000.
'No profit, but that's not what this project has been about.'
We didn't do it for financial gain. We wanted to build it for Paul, and that's what it's for.
So I hope it is going to be a social hub for Paul.
He's 30 now, so he's spent 30 years of his life in Kennington.
All the neighbours, the shopkeepers, he's very well-known,
so hopefully lots of people will drop in and see him.
It's just what he wanted.
'So Paul has a wonderful purpose-built home that will give him some independence
'whilst retaining the support he needs. And in terms of value, you can't really put a price on that.'
'We're heading back to the charming rural village of Mobberley in Cheshire.
'Old friends Kevin and Graham bought this rather colourful bungalow for £121,000.
'At £26,000 over the guide price, this meant their renovation budget was squeezed.'
We're looking at spending £9,000, including estate agents fees, as well.
Fairly tight because we went over budget at the auction.
'And their timescale for completing the work was just as tight.
'They wanted to have it done and dusted and ready to sell in six weeks.
'We've returned seven weeks later and things are looking promising.
'Inside, the dated decor is no more.
'There's an updated bathroom and the swirly carpet has gone from the living room.
'The kitchen has now got a worktop and new appliances.
'They've really turned this place from kitsch to clean.
'Kevin and Graham both own landscaping businesses,
'so getting the garden looking spick and span tapped into their expertise.'
With the garden, we've opened the garden up, it was very overgrown.
So we've cut everything back, removed the old shrubs, put new shrubs in
which should appeal to people interested in buying a property.
Re-turfed the actual lawn, as well, put that back to nice grass.
And it's really opened the garden up. We've pruned all the trees back, as well.
We've cleaned the patio off. We'd have liked to put a new patio down,
but we've reached our budget now, so see how it goes.
We think we have achieved what we wanted by opening it up and make it a useable space for the house,
in making it seem bigger than what it actually is.
'And it's not the only area he's pleased with.'
In the kitchen, we had a brick cupboard there, very old sliding doors,
we took that cupboard completely out.
We basically put the sink back where it was, the cooker virtually where it was,
obviously all new cupboards, new worktops,
new tiles, everything's been rewired in the kitchen, replumbed.
And vinyl on the floor. Very pleased with the kitchen. Probably my favourite room in the house.
It's made good use of the size of it, space-wise.
It's nice and light and airy so we're pleased with the kitchen, it's turned out well.
# He was a friend of mine
'Although they have been friends for years,
'this was the first property development Graham and Kevin had tackled together.
'Did their friendship survive?'
We've known each other for over 30 years so we got on really well. No problem at all. As far as I know.
No problem at all, we get on well, we always have done.
And if something else comes up in a similar price range, we'll have a go at it.
'Planning their next one already? Sounds a success to me.
'With a bungalow, there's often the option of extending into the roof, but they decided not to do that.'
# I was looking up
Well, we could have put an extra room up in the loft but the cost, something like £25,000,
I don't think we'd have got the cost back. It's up to somebody if they move in,
they can make a decision and if they want to do that, they can pay the £25,000.
'And talking of the figures, the budget was set at £9,000.
'It sounded a tad tight to me.'
# Money talks, money talks
# Dirty cash I want you, dirty cash I need you, oh
We are virtually to budget. We've gone over a little bit, by about £800 to £1,000.
We're thereabouts, so I'm pleased with it, really.
'Time to ask a couple of estate agents
'to cast their expert eyes over it and share their thoughts.'
I think the property is very nice.
Nice front garden, nice rear garden, well located, close to Knutsford.
What they've done to the bungalow is right for the market.
It's relatively neutral. It has a walk-in feel.
What the market wants is what they have here.
It's a neutral bathroom, fixtures and fittings. It's ready to walk into.
'If they wanted to rent the property out, what sort of return could they expect?'
The bungalow would rent. There is a good market.
And I would suggest somewhere in the region of £650 per calendar month.
I think the rental value is about £600 per calendar month.
-I think that's good.
-That's good, yeah.
-We expected around the £600 mark, if we were to rent it out.
-We're very happy with that?
-'Are they tempted to rent, then?'
-I think we'd both prefer to sell.
-Yeah, we'd prefer to sell it and move on, yeah.
'With their hearts set on selling, what do the estate agents recommend it be put on the market for?'
The bungalow would sell. There's little, if nothing, that compares here at the moment.
Therefore I would suggest an initial asking price of £155,000.
I'd market this property at £165,000.
'So after buying the bungalow for £121,000 and the cost of the work coming to around £10,000,
'their total spend was £131,000.
'So, going by the estate agents' estimates, they could stand to make a pre-tax profit
'of between £24,000 and £34,000, minus the usual selling expenses.'
We're happy with the valuations, really, aren't we? It's what we anticipated it to be at.
We've pitched it at something like 157, 158.
So it's on the market for £155,000, so they're pretty much spot on. We're happy with that, yeah.
We've turned it round in seven weeks, so the return is good, yeah.
We're happy with the return on it for the amount of time it's taken to do it.
'It just goes to show, even now,
'if you know the area, do your research and waste no time getting the work done,
-'you can reap the rewards.'
-# You will get
# Your reward
Well, that's it for now. We'll have lots more auction properties for you next time.
-So join us then to find out more of what happens when that hammer comes down.
Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd
E-mail [email protected]
Martin Roberts and Lucy Alexander visit a former studio in Fife, a plot of land in Kent and a bungalow in Cheshire. All of these properties have been sold at auction, and Martin and Lucy find out who bought them and what they paid when they went under the hammer.