Episode 75 Homes Under the Hammer


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Episode 75

Martin Roberts and Lucy Alexander visit a former martial arts centre in Cardiff, a property in Watford and a house in Manchester, finding out who bought them and what they paid.


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Transcript


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Hello and welcome. The auction room is an exciting place to be.

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And you might even brave the bidding and bag yourself a bargain.

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Yes. You never know what might happen

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when you buy your home under the hammer.

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Now, buying a property can be a long and stressful process.

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But if you buy at auction, you get speed of service in the auction room.

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That's because, when the hammer falls, the property is yours.

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So let's find out what people bought on today's show.

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We revisit this former martial-arts centre in Cardiff,

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which packed a real punch when I first saw it.

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-HE LAUGHS

-Wow!

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I'll be checking how convenient this property in Watford is.

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Got ladies' and men's loos, really good condition...

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While I get the opposite impression with this house in Manchester.

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I just don't think it's worth it.

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It's one of those cases where you just leave well alone.

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All these properties have been sold at auction,

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and we'll find out who bought them and what they paid for them

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-when they went under the hammer.

-There we go!

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Back in May 2009,

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I went to the historic but happening capital city of Wales, Cardiff,

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to an area which was the childhood stomping ground

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of Dame Shirley Bassey, no less.

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I'm in a place which has one of my favourite names

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of anywhere in the country - Splott!

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It's a residential suburb of Cardiff.

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Isn't that great? And there's a very interesting opportunity

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on the cards. It's this building here,

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the former aikido centre. It's a residential development opportunity,

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but will it be "diamonds are forever" for the buyer,

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or does it need "a big spender"?

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# The minute you walked in the joint

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# I could see you were a man of distinction

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# A real big spender...

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From the outside, this former martial-arts centre

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is certainly impressive. It's a two-storey detached property

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with a lovely brick-and-stone facade.

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The guide price at auction was £42,000.

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Let's take a look inside.

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# Hey, big spender #

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So, what's behind the big black door?

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Um... OK. Well, downstairs here, one very large room.

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I'd say slightly disappointing, though.

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Big industrial space, if you like,

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though bearing in mind this was a martial-arts club,

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I guess this was a training area. You've got changing facilities there

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but not a lot else.

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Still, intriguing. Let's take a look upstairs.

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# Everybody was kung fu fighting...

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HE LAUGHS

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Wow!

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# In fact it was a little bit frightening #

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What an amazing space!

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Oh, you come up here, and this place has suddenly redeemed itself.

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Look at this! The high ceilings, the wooden floorboards...

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I guess this was where the main training area

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for the martial-arts centre would have been.

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So, what could you use this for?

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Well, the biggest issue, at first glance,

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is the fact that you've only got light on the front and that side

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of the building, so if you're converting this to residential,

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you've got that whole wall there and that one

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which has got no windows in it, so you'd have to get creative -

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think about knocking it down, putting a steel frame inside,

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and converting it into flats.

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Er, the options are endless and very exciting.

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There are many options here,

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and it's a great space for sure.

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But the building is not without its problems.

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Redevelopment as residential will need the planners on your side,

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not to mention the neighbours.

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Structurally, from the outside it's clear

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that the walls and roof are in serious need of repair,

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and that's going to cost.

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But with a guide price of £42,000,

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I think there's a lot of opportunity for this property.

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So, will this former martial-arts centre be retained

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and maybe converted into flats,

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set up as a community centre perhaps,

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or knocked down and replaced by houses?

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I fear it may well be for the karate chop.

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Let's go to the auction and find out what happened.

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On we go now, then, ladies and gentlemen,

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to lot number 24 in your catalogue.

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Detached two-storey commercial premises this time.

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I have a £49,000 reserve,

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and I have a £49,000 proxy bid.

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So what am I bid for it? Can I see 50 in the room, please?

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I am selling all the time. I have a £49,000 bid.

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At £49,000 I am selling.

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50 if you like. At 49,000...

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50. Thank you. At 50,000 I'm bid.

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51 for my proxy bid.

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At 51. Two if you like now, madam. My proxy bid is out.

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At 52,000. I'm selling all the time.

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It is your bid, madam. At 52,000.

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Can I see three anywhere now? It's the lady's bid.

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At £52,000. She's going to get it if you're not quick.

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Have you all done, then? Three, thank you, standing in the back.

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I thought you'd got it, madam. At... Four. 54 for the lady.

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55, will you, sir? Five. 55 for the gent.

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56, please, madam. 56, I'm bid.

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At 56. Are you coming again, sir? Don't shake your head!

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You don't get it that way. At 56,000 for the lady, then.

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At 56,000. Are you coming again, sir?

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Yes or no? The lady's going to get it.

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£56,000. Have you all done, then?

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At £56,000...

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Lady's bid. Thank you.

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The successful bid of 56,000 was made by Noor

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on behalf of her husband, Ahmed.

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Ahmed is a retired child psychiatrist

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who's using his pension pot to invest in property.

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He already has six others, five of which he rents out.

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I met up with the doctor to find out if he had a remedy

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for this ailing building.

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Beautiful, beautiful.

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I'd love to see these floorboards cleaned up.

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I hope we'll keep on top of it, for the time being at least.

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-Listen, congratulations.

-Thank you.

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-Interesting project!

-Very.

-Tell me why you wanted to buy it.

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-Because it's interesting.

-OK!

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It's different than other buildings around it.

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It seemed to have a character of some shape.

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-I didn't have an opportunity to come inside...

-Really?

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..but, you see, it's location, location, location,

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so you have to study the territory around you.

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You have to know what buildings are around,

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so you can think what is the potential of developing this into,

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and I thought that was a reasonable price.

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Of course, I always advise against buying at auction

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without viewing the property first,

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but Ahmed had at least done valuable location research beforehand.

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So, what's the plan for this place, then?

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I don't think there are clear plans as yet, actually.

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It goes all the way from demolishing it and redeveloping it from scratch

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into, kind of, why not keep the walls...

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So no clear plan yet, then.

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There's quite a difference between the option of demolishing

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and rebuilding and converting the current building to flat,

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which is Ahmed's other idea. Whichever he goes for

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will have a big impact on the budget, for starters.

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Do you have any idea of budgets? How much have you got to play with?

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With this size, then, the minimum I would think of,

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if we can make that a couple of semis,

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or three flats, that would be worthwhile.

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Er, that will mean we may need to spend maybe £70,000, £80,000

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on developing it and so forth.

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So, the doctor's budget for redeveloping the building,

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either by rebuilding or converting it to flats,

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is similar - around the £70,000 to £80,000 mark.

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-What kind of timescale have you got?

-Realistically I give this project...

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a year. I'm hoping it will be eight months, something like that.

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That's a realistic kind of thing, really.

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As there are no planning consents in place here,

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I just hope that eight months to a year will be long enough.

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And although Ahmed may be hazy over which direction to take,

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he's very clear about making an informed decision

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based on professional advice. So, time to meet his trusted architect.

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Somas, you're Ahmed's architect. What do you think of this place?

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Initially when I saw this building,

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I thought, "It has got character." That's what I told him.

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And if he can retain the building in the development,

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that would be a great achievement.

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So I am in the process of designing something

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where I will be retaining the building.

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How are you going to do that? What ideas do you have?

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It's creating small openings to act as light wells,

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so that you can get light into the middle of the building,

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so you can have bedrooms looking into the courtyard,

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and yet keep the structure as it is.

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I'll try my best to convince the doctor

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that that is the best,

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and try to show it in terms of economising wherever possible,

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to reduce the cost in the conversion,

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and get as many units as possible

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so that it becomes a better return for him.

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Ahmed gave himself a year to complete the work.

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But when we first met up with him again in January 2011,

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20 months later, things weren't quite finished.

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It wasn't tenant-ready yet, but there was an interesting story to tell.

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On the inside, they'd put down a brand-new floor.

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So where the accommodation used to be over two floors,

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it's now on three. So, why all the delays?

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The original hope I had at the very, very beginning

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was that I may have six one-bedroom flats.

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We applied for that, and then were told no,

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and so eventually, after some long negotiations,

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we agreed to three one-bedroom flats.

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So Ahmed's grand plans for six one-beds were rejected

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in favour of three larger one-bed flats.

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Each flat comprises a double bedroom, a bathroom

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and a large kitchen-dining-living area.

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The flats are pretty spacious,

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each measuring around 100 square metres.

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All the to-ing and fro-ing with planners really held Ahmed back,

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and then there were the neighbours to get on-side.

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We had to negotiate with the neighbours

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how to go through the process of the development

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and how to keep them kind of comfortable,

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and coping with...

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Ah, yes, I suspect builders around the place are intrusions,

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so in that sense they had reason to be kind of...to be comforted.

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It's always wise to see things from the perspective

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of those living close by, and keep things amicable.

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One agreement that was reached was for Ahmed to rent the garden space

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of five neighbours to put scaffolding up

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to take off the roof.

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So eventually we were able to make the deal,

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and eventually we were all kind of happy with the work to progress.

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Phew! So the builders could then set about creating

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three one-bedroom flats.

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There's one flat on the ground floor,

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one apartment on the new first floor,

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and a light-and-airy penthouse on the top floor.

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But the most intriguing feature of the accommodation

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is that it's all been built around an ingenious light well.

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# Light up, light up

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# As if you have a choice #

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OK, so this needs a bit of imagination!

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But ignore the scaffolding planks at the top

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and picture this shaft painted white, and you'll get the idea.

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Ahmed hoped that when this was finished,

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it would bounce the light around, creating a bright and spacious flat.

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Later in the show, we catch up with the project

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another six months on, to see whether Ahmed's bright idea

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is finally complete.

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# Baby, it's cold outside #

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On this cold and snowy day,

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I'm 20 miles northwest of Central London in Watford.

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It's an important commercial and retail centre,

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and historically was on the common route from London to the Midlands.

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It's no surprise that these transport links

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have continued to grow, as there's access to the M1 and M25,

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with good train and Underground links.

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But what about the housing around here?

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This is predominantly a residential street in Watford,

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with a number of reasonably modern houses,

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very typical for the area. However, the property I'm here to see

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had never been lived in. The guide price was £165,000.

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It's a pretty modern build,

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and I don't think you're going to be struggling for parking

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with this space out here. I know it doesn't look like one,

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but it's a church!

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SONG: "Hallelujah Chorus" by Handel

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It may not appear to be a traditional church

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in an architectural sense, but its location in the heart of the community,

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on a residential street, could benefit a shrewd purchaser.

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So, this is the foyer.

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Gosh! Do you know, it's clean as a whistle in here!

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It's almost as though it's recently been renovated.

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You've got the ladies' and men's loos, really good condition.

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And this is the space!

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Goodness! There's a whole load of nothing in here.

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There's actually no character at all.

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I was expecting a few stained-glass windows.

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What you do have, though, is fairly new double-glazed units,

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so that's one good thing.

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I'm just wondering what you could use this room for.

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You've got some heating down there,

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and there's air conditioning up here,

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so you don't have traditional radiators.

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I'm just wondering if there's any way

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you could increase the square footage by knocking through here.

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I'm going to investigate.

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So it's a serviceable building which is in pretty good condition.

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But with a big, plain room like this,

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I think the selling factor would be the amount of space you've got.

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Could the answer lie outdoors?

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You've got a little bit of room outside this building here,

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and I don't think you'll have too many problems getting permission to extend.

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It could open up the opportunities of what the place could be used for,

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and I think it'll make the world of difference to the interior.

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It may not be a huge amount of room,

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but those extra feet could open up your options here.

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And, as the space at the back has no other use,

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it would be a real shame to waste it.

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So, what could you do with this place?

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Well, the current classification is D1,

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which means this building can be used for medical or health services.

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It could be used for a day nursery, a creche,

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education facilities, or as a place of worship.

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You could also apply for a change of use.

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However, there are only so many things you'll be able to do

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with a building like this. I'm not so sure this building lends itself

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to make a nice cosy home, but what about a development opportunity?

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Could you knock it down and replace it with two new builds,

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if the local planning authorities agreed, of course?

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You know, I think it's definitely worth a bit of research.

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I love the fact you've got lots of options with this place.

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But what does the local property expert think?

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We asked one along to tell us what she thought

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of this former church that was guided at 165,000.

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The building's in very good condition.

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It has air conditioning, double glazing,

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good facilities.

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What's the development potential of this place?

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There's definitely a strong argument for viewing this as a plot,

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and possibly a developer knocking down the building

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and putting residential dwellings on the plot.

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The rental value of the premises as it stands,

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with its current usage, I would say you would get in the region

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of £15,600 per annum.

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Because it is on a sizeable plot, we would look to market the premises

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at roughly £250,000.

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So, a big open space in need of some inspiration.

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I suppose as it is, it is a good blank canvas.

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Let's find out who had a vision for this place over at the auction.

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Lot 37. We move up to Watford now.

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Who'd like to kick off on this? 150 in the aisle.

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Thanks. 150. 155.

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155.

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160. 165.

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166.

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167.

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168.

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169. 170.

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This is exactly what every seller wants -

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two bidders fighting it out.

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It's not long before the bids shoot up past 240,000.

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241 with you.

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242.

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If not, 241 on my left.

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First time, second time, third...

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242. 243.

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244.

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245.

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I know what I'd bid.

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You're not with me. 246?

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No? 245 on my left.

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246 elsewhere? If not, 245.

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First time, second time.

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Third and last time. Have you all done?

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Sold, 245. Well done. Sorry, at the back.

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That successful bid of 245,000,

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a massive £80,000 more than the guide price,

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was made by Rudra, a full-time property developer.

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He and his wife Bhama have an interesting plan

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for this former church. I met up with Rudra

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at the property to find out more.

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-Rudra, congratulations. Lovely to meet you today.

-And you.

0:19:550:19:59

What's the story behind you wanting to buy this?

0:19:590:20:02

We've got a little boy, and we've always looked around at nurseries,

0:20:020:20:05

and we couldn't find one,

0:20:050:20:07

so we thought we'd build our own from scratch.

0:20:070:20:10

So you saw this and thought of it as a nursery?

0:20:100:20:13

-Yes.

-So when you viewed it for the first time, what did you think?

0:20:130:20:16

Good. It had potential. It wasn't as big as we thought,

0:20:160:20:20

but I thought it had potential to extend

0:20:200:20:22

and make it into an ideal day nursery.

0:20:220:20:25

You are going some, buying a nursery just because you couldn't find one for your son!

0:20:250:20:30

Yes, but we thought we could provide a good service,

0:20:300:20:33

and, you know, it's nice to have your own,

0:20:330:20:37

and you can drive it yourself then.

0:20:370:20:39

That's certainly dedicated parenting,

0:20:390:20:42

and what we find here is a building

0:20:420:20:45

that seems to be offering a lot of opportunities.

0:20:450:20:47

So, you're saying that you feel that you'd need to extend this?

0:20:470:20:51

-Mm-hm.

-Where would you do that?

0:20:510:20:53

Just behind where you stand. We'll be punching a hole through there

0:20:530:20:58

and creating a baby room, and on this side would be a kitchen,

0:20:580:21:02

and obviously this will be the main day room.

0:21:020:21:05

So when you saw it for the first time,

0:21:050:21:07

did you think, "Ah! This is perfect"?

0:21:070:21:10

-Yes.

-And how much experience in property do you have?

0:21:100:21:13

I've got some experience. We've done conversions

0:21:130:21:16

and new builds, but nothing in the commercial sectors such as this,

0:21:160:21:20

and involving other people's children, primarily.

0:21:200:21:24

Rudra may not have any experience of running a nursery,

0:21:240:21:28

but he does know his way round the property market.

0:21:280:21:31

That means he's aware of many unexpected legal issues

0:21:310:21:34

that could crop up.

0:21:340:21:36

Was there anything that took your eye in the legal pack?

0:21:360:21:40

Did you read it prior to the auction?

0:21:400:21:42

We went through it. There is an overage.

0:21:420:21:44

There's a clause within it,

0:21:440:21:46

which, again, we have to share it with the original sellers.

0:21:460:21:52

But it's limited to ten years, so...

0:21:520:21:55

So you need to keep these premises for ten years,

0:21:550:21:58

otherwise you have to pay a percentage...

0:21:580:22:00

-Yes.

-..to the original vendor?

-Yes.

0:22:000:22:03

-And how much is that percentage?

-It's 20 percent of the gain.

0:22:030:22:06

Rudra and Bhama view the nursery as a long-term investment,

0:22:060:22:10

so they don't see the sell-on clause as too much of an issue.

0:22:100:22:14

The good news is that the D1 classification

0:22:140:22:17

covers the building for use as a nursery,

0:22:170:22:20

so they don't have to apply for change of use.

0:22:200:22:22

But they will have to get planning permission

0:22:220:22:25

to extend at the back.

0:22:250:22:27

So, what sort of budget are we looking at here,

0:22:270:22:30

-to do the work that you need to do?

-We've earmarked about £60,000.

0:22:300:22:34

How long do you think it will take to get all the work sorted out?

0:22:340:22:38

It's going to be about 12 to 16 weeks.

0:22:380:22:41

-And you're quite certain on that?

-We'll try to.

0:22:410:22:44

How good are you at keeping to figures and timescales?

0:22:440:22:47

When you come back, we'll find out whether we have been.

0:22:470:22:51

Rudra hopes the paperwork won't take more than six weeks

0:22:510:22:54

to get signed off. After that, that's when the real work starts.

0:22:540:22:58

You have mentioned that you've got a little bit of experience in property.

0:23:000:23:04

Have you thought about potentially redeveloping this site,

0:23:040:23:08

maybe building a couple of houses here?

0:23:080:23:10

We did look into the option,

0:23:100:23:12

but our primary goal was, we wanted a nursery, a nursery site.

0:23:120:23:17

But that's a real good sort of failsafe, I suppose.

0:23:170:23:21

We can still probably put - we've spoken to the planners -

0:23:210:23:24

-put two houses up.

-That's something you can think about in the future.

0:23:240:23:28

Yes. Maybe after the ten years.

0:23:280:23:30

-Exactly. Whatever you do, stick with the ten years!

-Exactly.

0:23:300:23:34

Good luck with this. It's really an exciting project for you,

0:23:340:23:38

-and it is your time. Well done.

-Thank you.

-Thank you.

0:23:380:23:41

Rudra and his wife are taking on a brand-new, exciting challenge

0:23:440:23:49

in their lives. But I've got a feeling

0:23:490:23:51

the church renovations are going to be the easy part

0:23:510:23:54

compared with running a nursery!

0:23:540:23:56

You can find out how they get on later in the programme.

0:23:560:24:00

Coming up - this house in Manchester is far from being homely.

0:24:010:24:05

Well, as you can see, it does need some work.

0:24:050:24:10

Turning this church in Watford into a nursery wasn't child's play.

0:24:110:24:15

They suggested that we have the nursery up and running,

0:24:150:24:18

and then do the extension.

0:24:180:24:21

But first, in Cardiff, Ahmed has been selfless

0:24:210:24:25

with his renovation.

0:24:250:24:27

It's not what I want.

0:24:270:24:29

It's what someone who will live here would want.

0:24:290:24:31

Now to Cardiff, where, back in 2009,

0:24:340:24:37

this former martial-arts centre sold at auction for 56,000.

0:24:370:24:42

It was bought by Ahmed, a retired doctor,

0:24:420:24:44

who was looking to build up his portfolio of properties.

0:24:440:24:47

But he wasn't quite sure what to do with this one.

0:24:470:24:50

I don't think there are clear plans as yet, actually.

0:24:530:24:56

It goes all the way from demolishing it and redeveloping it from scratch

0:24:560:25:00

into, kind of, why not keep the walls?

0:25:000:25:04

He decided not to demolish the building,

0:25:040:25:07

and planned to convert it into modern flats to rent out.

0:25:070:25:11

He gave himself a reasonable timescale to work to.

0:25:110:25:14

But 20 months later, when we first returned,

0:25:160:25:20

he hadn't quite done as much as he hoped.

0:25:200:25:23

The work was delayed waiting for planning permission,

0:25:230:25:26

and when his proposal for six one-bed flats fell through,

0:25:260:25:29

Ahmed had to settle for converting the property

0:25:290:25:32

into three large one-bedroom flats. But in order to do that,

0:25:320:25:37

he had to create a whole new storey in the property,

0:25:370:25:41

and there were other delays, too.

0:25:410:25:44

We had to negotiate with the neighbours about the development,

0:25:470:25:51

and how to keep them kind of comfortable,

0:25:510:25:55

and coping with...

0:25:550:25:57

Ah, yes, I suspect builders around the place are an intrusion,

0:25:570:26:01

so in that sense, they had reason to be kind of comforted.

0:26:010:26:06

So, six months on from our last visit,

0:26:060:26:10

and just over two years since he bought the property,

0:26:100:26:13

has Ahmed finally completed the project?

0:26:130:26:15

# Trust me, trust me, I'm a doctor

0:26:170:26:20

# Trust me, trust me, I'm a doctor

0:26:200:26:24

# I know, I know what I'm doing wrong #

0:26:240:26:28

As you can see, each of the flats has been finished off nicely,

0:26:280:26:32

with new flooring throughout

0:26:320:26:34

and fresh paint on those new interior walls.

0:26:340:26:37

Ahmed has put modern, stylish shower rooms and kitchens in each flat.

0:26:400:26:46

Although the colour scheme and fittings are all fairly neutral,

0:26:460:26:50

remember, he did plan to rent the flats out.

0:26:500:26:53

Honestly, when we do a project like that,

0:26:530:26:56

it's not what I want.

0:26:560:26:58

It's what someone who will live here would want,

0:26:580:27:00

and how it can be comfortable, how it can feel safe,

0:27:000:27:05

how it can feel kind of refreshing,

0:27:050:27:07

er, liveable in.

0:27:070:27:10

The piece de resistance is the conversion of the top floor

0:27:100:27:15

into a bright penthouse flat.

0:27:150:27:18

There's a lot of space up here,

0:27:180:27:21

although the bedroom is a little on the small side.

0:27:210:27:23

I would have gone for more substantial central heating

0:27:230:27:26

than those heaters, but those VELUX windows in the roof

0:27:260:27:29

make the whole place shine.

0:27:290:27:31

SONG: "Ray Of Light" by Madonna

0:27:310:27:34

# Quicker than a ray of light

0:27:340:27:37

# Quicker than a ray of light...

0:27:370:27:40

And it's Ahmed's favourite too.

0:27:400:27:42

I like the top flat, actually.

0:27:420:27:45

It's, er, very, very pleasant,

0:27:450:27:49

very, very kind of well lit,

0:27:490:27:52

and so many kind of windows everywhere,

0:27:520:27:57

and very comfortable, very open.

0:27:570:28:00

Somewhere you really feel comfortable in.

0:28:000:28:03

The other two flats below only have windows at one end,

0:28:040:28:08

but Ahmed's still managed to keep them bright

0:28:080:28:11

with the ingenious light well

0:28:110:28:13

running from the top of the building.

0:28:130:28:15

# Quicker than a ray of light

0:28:150:28:19

# Quicker than a ray of light

0:28:190:28:23

# Quicker than a ray of light... #

0:28:230:28:27

This is part of the atrium, they call it.

0:28:310:28:33

It's a place where you get extra lighting

0:28:330:28:36

for the whole building from.

0:28:360:28:39

They can have an indoor garden here of some shape.

0:28:390:28:42

I can see myself here sitting with a couple of chairs

0:28:420:28:46

and a little table, and kind of enjoying the sun

0:28:460:28:49

when the sun is coming here,

0:28:490:28:51

so that's a very practical part of the ground floor here.

0:28:510:28:56

Ahmed's not the only one happy with the outcome.

0:28:560:28:58

So is his architect, Somas.

0:28:580:29:02

I am very, very happy. It's three flats, large flats,

0:29:050:29:10

rather than, you know, one house.

0:29:100:29:14

It's more beneficial for my client

0:29:140:29:17

because he can get a better return.

0:29:170:29:20

Originally everyone said this can be only one house,

0:29:200:29:24

but that wouldn't have been financially a feasible proposition,

0:29:240:29:28

so we went in, tried our best, and got him three very large flats.

0:29:280:29:33

He's happy. Inside, the property looks completely different

0:29:330:29:36

to what it was.

0:29:360:29:38

# Love

0:29:380:29:40

# It's so crazy, make my heart go oops-a-daisy

0:29:400:29:44

# Cos I love you inside out #

0:29:440:29:47

Overall, Ahmed's spend on the property increased

0:29:470:29:50

from his original budget of 70,000 to nearer 90,000.

0:29:500:29:54

Added to the 56,000 he paid at auction, that's a total outlay

0:29:540:29:58

of around 146,000.

0:29:580:30:01

Will his hard work return him a decent profit, though?

0:30:040:30:08

We asked two local property experts to give us their thoughts

0:30:080:30:11

on the place.

0:30:110:30:13

Well, the transformation's been immense.

0:30:190:30:22

What we have here is now a great volume of space

0:30:220:30:25

coupled with contemporary modern living.

0:30:250:30:28

So from an overall feel, as such, it creates space, atmosphere...

0:30:280:30:33

I like the open-plan space. I think that works very well,

0:30:330:30:36

and the tunnel coming through the centre of the flats

0:30:360:30:39

is a massive added bonus.

0:30:390:30:41

I probably would have done a more luxurious finish,

0:30:410:30:44

but that's from a selling point of view.

0:30:440:30:46

I think the top floor, the penthouse, is probably my favourite,

0:30:460:30:50

the fact that it has the most light, and the views as well.

0:30:500:30:53

And I suppose, from that point of view,

0:30:530:30:55

that gives you the independence that you're not close to anyone,

0:30:550:31:00

as it were. You're at the top of the tree, so to speak.

0:31:000:31:03

So, if Ahmed did decide to sell,

0:31:030:31:06

what would he get for each individual flat?

0:31:060:31:08

Remember, the total spend on the whole building,

0:31:080:31:11

including the conversion work, is around 146,000.

0:31:110:31:15

In my opinion, the sale value of the ground floor and first-floor flats

0:31:160:31:20

would be £100,000, and with the penthouse, with the views,

0:31:200:31:24

in my opinion, the resale value would be £110,000.

0:31:240:31:29

The sale value of this property would be looking to achieve

0:31:290:31:32

around £100,000 for both the first floor and the ground floor.

0:31:320:31:36

The top floor maybe a little bit more,

0:31:360:31:38

around about 100 to 110.

0:31:380:31:41

That's a combined total of around 310,000,

0:31:410:31:45

a massive potential profit of £164,000,

0:31:450:31:49

minus the usual expenses and taxes, of course.

0:31:490:31:52

What does Ahmed make of those figures?

0:31:520:31:55

That's a pleasant surprise, if you like.

0:31:560:31:59

It can make up for the 20 extras that I had to pay for.

0:31:590:32:04

But his plan is to rent them out,

0:32:040:32:07

so what do the experts think he could charge per calendar month

0:32:070:32:10

for each individual flat?

0:32:100:32:12

The rental market for this property is good.

0:32:140:32:17

I think you'd be looking to achieve around £525 per calendar month.

0:32:170:32:23

In my opinion, the apartments would rent

0:32:230:32:25

for £525 per calendar month each.

0:32:250:32:29

Yes. On average, that would be what I expected. That's fine, yeah.

0:32:290:32:33

Those rental figures will give him a return

0:32:330:32:36

of £1,575 a month, if he rents them all out,

0:32:360:32:41

giving him a fabulous yield of just under 13 percent.

0:32:410:32:45

So it may have taken a good while longer to complete this conversion

0:32:450:32:49

than he first planned, but the future looks very bright for Ahmed.

0:32:490:32:54

Well, I'm about five miles east of Manchester city centre

0:32:590:33:03

in Audenshaw, famous for, amongst other things,

0:33:030:33:06

its three reservoirs, built by the Manchester Corporation

0:33:060:33:10

between 1877 and 1882. Now, when they built these,

0:33:100:33:14

unfortunately the original hamlet of Audenshaw was lost in the waters.

0:33:140:33:18

Still, they are hoping to open up this whole area to leisure pursuits

0:33:180:33:22

in the not-too-distant future.

0:33:220:33:24

# Well, you gotta come down to the reservoir

0:33:240:33:29

# I don't care who you say you are #

0:33:290:33:31

And at least in the meantime, Audenshaw will give you great access

0:33:310:33:35

to the countryside as well as the city of Manchester.

0:33:350:33:39

The property I'm here to see is right in the centre of Audenshaw.

0:33:390:33:43

It's a popular little spot, good schools,

0:33:430:33:46

and you're only 14 minutes from the centre of Manchester by train.

0:33:460:33:50

I'm here to see something that sounds like good value.

0:33:500:33:52

It's a mid-terrace, two bedrooms, and a guide price of 45,000 quid.

0:33:520:33:56

Nice redbrick construction. Let's take a look inside.

0:33:560:33:59

Well, if it's anything like as sturdy-looking on the inside

0:33:590:34:03

as it is on the outside, then, we're on to a winner.

0:34:030:34:06

You can't beat this cul-de-sac location.

0:34:060:34:08

There's a park at the bottom and a shop at the top.

0:34:080:34:10

It's very attractive.

0:34:100:34:13

Nice little entrance porch, keep the cold and the draughts out.

0:34:130:34:16

Into your front living room.

0:34:160:34:19

Very, very standard layout, I have to say.

0:34:190:34:21

Bit of damp on that front wall, rising damp.

0:34:210:34:24

Not that difficult to resolve with a chemical damp-proof course,

0:34:240:34:29

but you do want to check the floorboards

0:34:290:34:31

to make sure they haven't got rotten in the process.

0:34:310:34:34

Stairs where they should be in this kind of property, in the middle,

0:34:340:34:38

then through into your kitchen. Well, as you can see,

0:34:380:34:41

it does need some work, so to speak. But it's a good-size space,

0:34:410:34:46

nice big window so you've got lots of light,

0:34:460:34:48

and again, fairly traditional for this kind of property,

0:34:480:34:51

the loo, the bathroom, out the back. But people round here,

0:34:510:34:55

these kind of properties, it's kind of OK. It's accepted.

0:34:550:34:58

What's less acceptable, though, is the state of that bathroom.

0:34:580:35:01

The tiles and bathroom suite are way beyond repair,

0:35:010:35:05

so I think you have to cough up for a refit in here and in the kitchen.

0:35:050:35:10

So, upstairs, no great surprises - two bedrooms,

0:35:100:35:13

one at the front, one at the rear. You know, reasonable sizes,

0:35:130:35:17

and in terms of the internal layout of this place,

0:35:170:35:20

I don't think there's a lot you would do.

0:35:200:35:23

Move the bathroom, perhaps? I really don't think it's worth it.

0:35:230:35:27

The only thing you will have to factor in

0:35:270:35:29

is some money to sort out the central-heating system

0:35:290:35:32

and the hot-water supply, because it's clearly a little bit dated.

0:35:320:35:36

Even with the boiler out of the way,

0:35:360:35:38

I can't see how you would squeeze in a bathroom on this floor

0:35:380:35:42

without making one of the bedrooms far too small.

0:35:420:35:44

I wonder if the proportions are as restricted outside?

0:35:440:35:49

At the rear of the property you've got a little back yard,

0:35:490:35:53

and I'm just sitting here thinking,

0:35:530:35:55

is there any point in putting an extension on this property?

0:35:550:35:59

You could possibly do it, but in this instance,

0:35:590:36:01

I just don't think it's worth it.

0:36:010:36:04

It's one of those cases where you just leave well alone.

0:36:040:36:07

With a guide price of only 45,000,

0:36:070:36:10

is a local property expert as happy with the property as I am?

0:36:100:36:14

The property is a great first-time-buyer property

0:36:140:36:18

or buy-to-let property. It's got two good bedrooms,

0:36:180:36:21

and the bathroom extension... I would move the bathroom upstairs

0:36:210:36:25

and put the kitchen into the extension,

0:36:250:36:27

so you'd have two great reception rooms, a kitchen,

0:36:270:36:30

one big main bedroom, a smaller second bedroom,

0:36:300:36:33

and a bathroom. But it's ideal for the first-time buyer, and it's in a lovely position.

0:36:330:36:37

And, if it's bought as an investment,

0:36:370:36:40

what would he expect to get for this one as a rental?

0:36:400:36:43

'To rent this property, we would expect to achieve

0:36:430:36:46

'around £450 per calendar month.'

0:36:460:36:49

Would it do equally well on the sales market

0:36:490:36:52

once completely refurbished?

0:36:520:36:55

If we were selling this property,

0:36:550:36:57

we'd expect to get between £85,000 and £90,000,

0:36:570:37:01

but if it was done really well, to a high standard, £90,000.

0:37:010:37:06

Well, this is the kind of house that would be perfect

0:37:060:37:08

for a first-time buyer, or could well form the bedrock

0:37:080:37:12

of a property-investment portfolio. Not too much work to be done, and rent out ten-a-penny.

0:37:120:37:17

Let's see who bought it when it went under the hammer.

0:37:170:37:20

Lot number 18, two-bedroom terrace. Got a phone bid on this one.

0:37:200:37:25

What's this worth? 45? 45,000? £45,000 I have.

0:37:250:37:29

Do I see 50? 50 bid. At 50,000. Back on the phone, at £50,000.

0:37:290:37:33

Do I see 51? Your bid at 51. New bid at 51.

0:37:330:37:37

At 52. At 52. At 53. At 53,000.

0:37:370:37:40

53. 54. 54. 55. 55. Your bid, at 55,000.

0:37:400:37:45

56. At 56,000. 57. 57 we're at. Do I see 58?

0:37:450:37:50

At 58,000. 59, anywhere? At 58,000.

0:37:500:37:55

At 58. 58 and a half, then?

0:37:550:37:58

OK. It's going to be sold at 58,000.

0:37:580:38:00

Any advance on £58,500?

0:38:000:38:03

Rolls off the tongue. At 58 and a half, then, for the first time.

0:38:030:38:06

At 58 and a half for the second time.

0:38:060:38:09

Are we all done at 58,500?

0:38:090:38:11

There we go. Paddle 331, telephone bid.

0:38:110:38:15

# Hanging on the telephone #

0:38:150:38:19

It's sold to telephone bidder Joe, a 22-year-old first-time buyer.

0:38:190:38:23

He got this property for £58,500,

0:38:230:38:27

£13,500 over the guide price, and I went to meet him.

0:38:270:38:32

-Joe, good to meet you.

-Good to meet you.

-Congratulations.

0:38:320:38:35

-Thank you.

-You were on the other end of the telephone.

0:38:350:38:38

-I was, yeah.

-How was that?

0:38:380:38:40

-Very nervous. Very nerve-racking.

-What made you make the decision

0:38:400:38:44

-to make a telephone bid rather than be at the auction?

-At work.

0:38:440:38:47

-Oh, right.

-I was working at the time.

0:38:470:38:50

-Nipped out for a coffee break, and...

-Yeah.

0:38:500:38:53

-..bought a house!

-Yeah.

-Tell me about you. What do you do?

0:38:530:38:56

I'm a civil engineer. I graduated from university about 18 months ago,

0:38:560:39:01

so I've been working in Manchester on the new Manchester Metrolink.

0:39:010:39:05

So you've bought this for a place to live?

0:39:050:39:07

Initially, yeah. I was looking to rent somewhere,

0:39:070:39:10

and I started looking at the price of rent,

0:39:100:39:13

and I saw this place come up on auction,

0:39:130:39:16

and the price seemed about right, and I thought,

0:39:160:39:18

if I can make them figures work, it could be a good investment.

0:39:180:39:22

I came for a quick look round. It seemed quite big,

0:39:220:39:25

good rooms, and I think the work's quite manageable.

0:39:250:39:28

-I think I'll be able to take it on.

-Well, being a civil engineer,

0:39:280:39:32

-you must be vaguely practical.

-I'd like to think so.

0:39:320:39:35

-I'd like to think so.

-Build bridges and things,

0:39:350:39:38

but a bit of decorating might be a bit of a challenge.

0:39:380:39:41

Yeah. It might be the details that catch me out.

0:39:410:39:45

-Is this the first house you've bought?

-First house, yeah.

0:39:450:39:48

How do you feel now you've spent the money?

0:39:480:39:51

I'm pleased with it, yeah. The more I come in,

0:39:510:39:54

I think I've made the right decision. Obviously time will tell,

0:39:540:39:58

once I've done the work, but I'm confident it's a good purchase.

0:39:580:40:02

So, a good solid house.

0:40:020:40:04

What does this civil engineer have planned

0:40:040:40:07

for his very first property purchase?

0:40:070:40:10

'Well, first of all I'm just going to strip everything back,

0:40:100:40:14

'um, all the wallpapers.

0:40:140:40:16

'The kitchen itself will need taking out.'

0:40:160:40:19

The bathroom's not in too bad a state,

0:40:190:40:22

so I hope to save money by not spending too much on the bathroom.

0:40:220:40:26

The bedrooms themselves, the wallpaper, again,

0:40:260:40:29

stripping back. I'm going to get rid of them wardrobes.

0:40:290:40:33

They're a bit outdated these days.

0:40:330:40:35

There's an immersion heater upstairs. It's quite a large cupboard,

0:40:350:40:39

so I'll try and get rid of that and replace it with a combi boiler.

0:40:390:40:42

I think I could make quite a bit of space from there.

0:40:420:40:45

Right. I noticed a bit of damp on the front elevation of the house.

0:40:450:40:49

-Have you looked at that?

-Yeah. It seems to have dried out,

0:40:490:40:52

so hopefully it shouldn't be too much of a problem.

0:40:520:40:55

There is some water marks from the guttering,

0:40:550:40:58

so I may need to replace them, but I'll be stripping it back

0:40:580:41:01

and seeing what the problems are.

0:41:010:41:03

-Is the plan to do the work yourself?

-Yeah, as much as I can.

0:41:030:41:07

Hopefully my friends will help me out,

0:41:070:41:09

but that's the only way I can do it, to save on labour costs.

0:41:090:41:12

-Cos what's your budget?

-Budget's about 8,000.

0:41:120:41:16

Right. That's not a bad budget for this kind of property.

0:41:160:41:19

The bits that will take up the money is if I'm looking at rewiring,

0:41:190:41:23

obviously the boiler, and also windows and doors,

0:41:230:41:27

so there's some quite large expenses in there

0:41:270:41:29

that I need to take into account.

0:41:290:41:33

To help his money stretch even further,

0:41:330:41:35

Joe will move into the property while he renovates it.

0:41:350:41:38

So goodbye, social life for a bit, then.

0:41:380:41:40

Do you think this might give you the property bug?

0:41:400:41:43

I'll find out in a few months' time. I'm quite excited to do the work,

0:41:430:41:47

so hopefully I'll keep that... carry on that excitement,

0:41:470:41:52

and it'll be something I want to do again in the future.

0:41:520:41:55

What's the timescale? As quick as poss,

0:41:550:41:57

-cos you'll be living here, but roughly?

-Four to six months.

0:41:570:42:00

Right. You'll be doing it in your spare time.

0:42:000:42:03

Because I've got a job, which obviously takes priority,

0:42:030:42:06

and this will be my spare time.

0:42:060:42:08

Congratulations. It's good to see you get on the property ladder.

0:42:080:42:12

-I look forward to seeing how you get on.

-Thank you. I will.

0:42:120:42:15

Hopefully Joe won't need to call on too much of his civil-engineering degree to sort this place out.

0:42:150:42:21

I don't think there are too many structural issues.

0:42:210:42:24

And it's great that he bought his first property under the hammer.

0:42:240:42:27

You can find out how he gets on sorting it out later in the show.

0:42:270:42:30

You never know quite what you'll have to face

0:42:330:42:36

when you start your renovations.

0:42:360:42:38

Things don't always go to plan in the property world.

0:42:380:42:41

No. So, have our new owners put hammer to hail,

0:42:410:42:43

or has it all gone Pete Tong?

0:42:430:42:46

Back to Watford in Northwest London now,

0:42:480:42:50

to see how Rudra got on with the church premises.

0:42:500:42:53

The property was built as a place of worship in the '60s.

0:42:530:42:56

Although it wasn't exactly a cathedral -

0:42:560:42:59

no stained glass or altars here -

0:42:590:43:01

this hall did offer a very flexible business opportunity.

0:43:010:43:06

Property developer Rudra saw the potential the building had.

0:43:060:43:10

He'd dreamed of running a nursery since his son Reuben was born,

0:43:100:43:13

and they'd struggled to find a local nursery for him.

0:43:130:43:16

But, never having run anything like this before, there were risks attached.

0:43:160:43:20

I've got some experience. We've done conversions and new builds,

0:43:200:43:25

but nothing in the commercial sectors such as this,

0:43:250:43:28

and involving, you know, other people's children, primarily.

0:43:280:43:32

Rudra planned to extend at the rear of the property,

0:43:320:43:35

to add a kitchen and a quiet room for babies.

0:43:350:43:38

The couple paid 245,000 for the property,

0:43:390:43:42

and put aside a budget of £60,000 to refurbish the interior

0:43:420:43:47

and build the addition. They thought it would take three to four months.

0:43:470:43:51

We've come back just under nine months later to see.

0:43:530:43:56

Will it be kiddie heaven or planning hell?

0:43:560:43:59

SONG: "Kids" by Kylie Minogue (with Robbie Williams)

0:43:590:44:02

# And we'll paint by numbers

0:44:020:44:05

# Till something sticks

0:44:050:44:07

# Don't mind doing it for the kids #

0:44:070:44:11

The once-drab exterior is now unrecognisable

0:44:110:44:15

as the churchyard makes way for a nursery yard.

0:44:150:44:19

But there's no extension.

0:44:200:44:23

Since you were last here we applied for planning,

0:44:240:44:27

and initially they said we could have the extension

0:44:270:44:30

as we proposed. Subsequently, because of the traffic-flow issues,

0:44:300:44:35

they suggested that we have the nursery up and running,

0:44:350:44:38

and then do the extension.

0:44:380:44:41

The extension would have been through the rear patios.

0:44:410:44:44

That would have created a dedicated baby room

0:44:440:44:47

to care for about six babies,

0:44:470:44:50

but unfortunately we now have to bring it into the main hall,

0:44:500:44:54

and then later move it across once planning is attained.

0:44:540:44:57

So Rudra decided to withdraw the application

0:44:570:45:00

and follow the council's advice to reapply at a later date.

0:45:000:45:05

But he has done the groundwork for a future extension.

0:45:050:45:08

We've gone with the existing footprint,

0:45:080:45:10

but we've put the foundations in and the boundary walls in place,

0:45:100:45:14

so when we do get planning, there won't be a great deal of disturbance.

0:45:140:45:18

The nursery can carry on whilst the extension's being done.

0:45:180:45:22

Although he wasn't able to add the extra space he wanted,

0:45:220:45:26

Rudra has not kept his imagination in check.

0:45:260:45:29

This former church is now well on the way to becoming

0:45:290:45:32

the perfect playground for pint-sized people.

0:45:320:45:35

If you remember, when we bought the property,

0:45:380:45:40

behind here where we are standing was the entrance lobby.

0:45:400:45:44

This side we had some toilets, three toilets, if I recollect,

0:45:440:45:48

and on this side was just blank.

0:45:480:45:50

We've converted this side to form the offices,

0:45:500:45:54

and we've changed the layout of the toilets around

0:45:540:45:57

to face the main hall,

0:45:570:45:59

and we've got the children's loo and a store room,

0:45:590:46:03

which has now become the kitchenette.

0:46:030:46:07

This hall has remained pretty much the same,

0:46:070:46:09

apart from the patios leading out to the play area.

0:46:090:46:12

This area would obviously be subdivided now

0:46:120:46:16

to form the children's play area, the two-to-threes,

0:46:160:46:20

and three-to-fives,

0:46:200:46:22

and also we will incorporate, on this corner,

0:46:220:46:25

a children's rest area too. Now the work's finished.

0:46:250:46:29

The transformation's complete, and I'm extremely pleased with the results.

0:46:290:46:33

The original idea for the nursery business

0:46:330:46:35

grew out of Rudra and his wife Bhama's experience

0:46:350:46:38

of trying to find quality childcare for their son Reuben,

0:46:380:46:43

and it's been a family affair

0:46:430:46:44

to get the church conversion to this stage.

0:46:440:46:47

We have our dinner, then we sit down, go through the numbers.

0:46:470:46:50

I do the spreadsheets and he writes the emails.

0:46:500:46:53

We have it pretty much sorted out, who does what,

0:46:530:46:58

and, you know, as long as I'm in bed by 11, it's all right.

0:46:580:47:02

'Actually, I have to give all the credit to my husband.

0:47:020:47:06

'It's pretty much all his idea - the water pump, the bridge,

0:47:060:47:09

'even the outdoor space and the decking.'

0:47:090:47:13

We've done our children's toilets... It's quite special.

0:47:130:47:17

I haven't seen any nursery I've been to look at

0:47:170:47:19

have toilets like that, and we didn't have much.

0:47:190:47:22

We've done the best we could with what we had.

0:47:220:47:24

Rudra and Bhama bought the property for 245,000,

0:47:240:47:29

and completed the renovation work for their original budget

0:47:290:47:32

of £60,000, bringing their total outlay

0:47:320:47:35

to 305,000.

0:47:350:47:37

Time to hear what two local property experts think of their efforts.

0:47:380:47:43

Nurseries are hard to come by. D1 use is difficult to get sometimes.

0:47:440:47:49

You're competing with other D1 users.

0:47:490:47:51

This is a very high-density neighbourhood,

0:47:510:47:54

and I think the catchment area of the nursery will be excellent, probably.

0:47:540:47:58

There's always demand for nursery places across the board,

0:47:580:48:01

and especially in a residential area like this.

0:48:010:48:06

Well, that's a big thumbs-up for the nursery idea.

0:48:060:48:09

But what could the building now be worth?

0:48:090:48:12

A resale value on a property of this type

0:48:130:48:17

I would put somewhere in the region of £250,000.

0:48:170:48:21

Personally I see the value of this property at £200,000,

0:48:210:48:24

and as a going concern, I do not see the value increasing dramatically,

0:48:240:48:28

if at all, at this time.

0:48:280:48:30

Those valuations would mean a loss of between 105,000

0:48:300:48:34

and 55,000 before costs and expenses.

0:48:340:48:37

But it was never Rudra's intention to sell,

0:48:370:48:40

so he's not too worried about those estimates.

0:48:400:48:43

'When we bought it, the fallback option was to,

0:48:430:48:46

'if the business didn't succeed, convert it into two houses,

0:48:460:48:49

'so we knew the land was worth about stamp duty, which is £250,000.'

0:48:490:48:54

Although the property has not held its value,

0:48:540:48:57

Rudra and Bhama have a financial safety net in the worth of the land.

0:48:570:49:01

They have an agreement in principle from Ofsted

0:49:010:49:04

to open as a nursery, and are just awaiting the final legal checks

0:49:040:49:07

on their staff. They hope to start taking bookings

0:49:070:49:10

in the next month or so.

0:49:100:49:13

If this goes well, we're hoping to replicate this.

0:49:130:49:16

We want a boutique type of nursery,

0:49:160:49:19

not for the masses, and keep the numbers down

0:49:190:49:22

so it gives a homely feel. Hopefully we can replicate another one soon.

0:49:220:49:26

We're back in Audenshaw near Manchester

0:49:290:49:32

to see how 22-year-old engineering graduate Joe got on

0:49:320:49:35

with his very first-ever property buy.

0:49:350:49:38

Externally the two-bedroom mid-terrace was in good shape.

0:49:380:49:42

Internally the layout could be a drawback to potential buyers.

0:49:420:49:46

Not everyone likes a toilet off the kitchen.

0:49:460:49:49

But these are small but perfectly formed houses,

0:49:490:49:52

which can be difficult to alter.

0:49:520:49:54

Civil engineer Joe might be more used to building bridges

0:49:540:49:57

than stripping bathrooms, but he was willing to muck in

0:49:570:50:00

to help keep his costs down.

0:50:000:50:03

I'll do as much of the work as I can myself.

0:50:030:50:05

Hopefully my friends will help me out.

0:50:050:50:07

That's the only way I can do it, to save on labour costs.

0:50:070:50:10

First-time buyer Joe paid 58,500 for the house,

0:50:100:50:15

which was right at the top of his budget.

0:50:150:50:17

He knew it needed rewiring amongst many other things,

0:50:170:50:21

and he'd allowed just £8,000 for the refurbishment.

0:50:210:50:25

We've come back four months later

0:50:270:50:30

to see if Joe has made his very first house a home.

0:50:300:50:34

Outside, the old wooden windows have been replaced

0:50:420:50:45

and made watertight, but the house is not finished yet.

0:50:450:50:48

Joe has a full-time job, so he works long hours,

0:50:480:50:51

and only has evenings and weekends to do the work here.

0:50:510:50:55

But he's on his way to converting this neglected mid-terrace

0:50:550:50:58

into a contemporary home.

0:50:580:51:00

The past three months we've got quite a lot done.

0:51:000:51:03

We've been able to put new double glazing throughout the house.

0:51:030:51:06

It's had a full rewire. We've replaced the boiler

0:51:060:51:09

and put a combi boiler in downstairs so we could get a bit of space.

0:51:090:51:12

The main job now is decorating the whole house,

0:51:120:51:15

flooring and wallpaper, and then we can move in the furniture.

0:51:150:51:18

So, doing the work that this house needed

0:51:180:51:21

meant working up from the most basic level.

0:51:210:51:24

In the kitchen, we started by completely ripping out the kitchen.

0:51:280:51:31

We've ripped out all the tiles and all the wallpaper.

0:51:310:51:35

We then started by replastering the kitchen.

0:51:350:51:37

We've also added a new combi boiler in here,

0:51:370:51:40

so we could take out the immersion heater upstairs

0:51:400:51:43

to create more room. We've got new radiators.

0:51:430:51:46

The kitchen we've put in is an ex-display one,

0:51:460:51:48

which saved a bit of money, which has helped my budget quite a bit,

0:51:480:51:52

especially the price of some of the kitchens.

0:51:520:51:54

We've lowered the ceiling here as well,

0:51:540:51:57

which has enabled us to put downlighting in,

0:51:570:51:59

improve the lighting. It had been quite a tall room,

0:51:590:52:02

and also put some insulation in. We're now just waiting on appliances,

0:52:020:52:06

so then we'll have a functional kitchen,

0:52:060:52:09

then after that, a bit of decorating to finish it off.

0:52:090:52:12

Joe made the decision not to move the bathroom upstairs.

0:52:120:52:15

In addition, he's managed to save himself even more money

0:52:150:52:19

by keeping the white suite.

0:52:190:52:21

In the bathroom I installed a new shower direct from the combi boiler,

0:52:210:52:25

taking away the old electric. I re-tiled the bathroom.

0:52:250:52:28

The biggest problem, I've found, has been time,

0:52:280:52:32

not just for me to do the work

0:52:320:52:34

but even to find the people to come in to do the work,

0:52:340:52:36

and organise them, so I was, like, juggling two jobs at once.

0:52:360:52:41

So no time to himself this summer.

0:52:450:52:47

Joe has discovered that doing up your own property

0:52:470:52:50

is indeed a full-time job,

0:52:500:52:52

and one that has had to fit around his other full-time job.

0:52:520:52:57

It's been hard work after work, knowing other people can go home

0:52:570:53:00

and chill out or go for a drink or whatever,

0:53:000:53:02

and try to keep yourself motivated to finish work at six, seven o'clock

0:53:020:53:07

and then come up here to start tiling or painting or whatever it may be,

0:53:070:53:11

particularly on the weekends after a long week.

0:53:110:53:14

Sometimes it's the last thing you want to do,

0:53:140:53:16

but at the end of it, it will have been worth it.

0:53:160:53:18

Upstairs there were already two good-size bedrooms.

0:53:180:53:21

Now there's just a little bit more.

0:53:210:53:24

In the main bedroom we stripped all the wallpaper back.

0:53:250:53:29

We've broken away some rotting plaster around the windows,

0:53:290:53:32

replaced the windows with new double-glazing.

0:53:320:53:36

We've also lowered the ceiling, allowing us to reinsulate it there,

0:53:360:53:39

and also provide downlighting to improve the lighting in the room.

0:53:390:53:43

We've started to decorate. It just needs its final coat of paint,

0:53:430:53:46

and obviously we're going to wallpaper this wall here.

0:53:460:53:50

Er, we've also been able to put in a new en suite

0:53:500:53:54

by knocking through the wall to the cupboard where the immersion heater was,

0:53:540:53:58

and I'm looking forward to having an en suite upstairs.

0:53:580:54:01

Sounds like he's ready to move in.

0:54:010:54:03

But having an en suite was not in his original plans

0:54:030:54:06

or his original budget.

0:54:060:54:09

'Er, my original budget was 8,000.'

0:54:090:54:12

When complete, that will be 12,000.

0:54:120:54:16

It's increased due to extra things that we've done,

0:54:160:54:20

including the en suite. One of our main problems has been my time

0:54:200:54:23

to be able to do it, with work,

0:54:230:54:26

so we have had to get some people in a few times

0:54:260:54:28

to do some of the work which I had originally planned to do myself.

0:54:280:54:32

Joe bought the house for £58,500,

0:54:320:54:35

and spent £12,000 on refurbishing it,

0:54:350:54:38

bringing his total outlay to 70,500.

0:54:380:54:41

Time to find out what two local estate agents think of his work.

0:54:410:54:45

What I like about what he's done so far,

0:54:450:54:49

the kitchen's really nice.

0:54:490:54:51

I think the en suite is a nice touch in the main bedroom.

0:54:510:54:54

Again, most people renting or buying this type of house

0:54:540:54:58

would be a couple or a single person,

0:54:580:55:01

so the bathroom in the bedroom is a nice touch.

0:55:010:55:03

It's a terraced house, so there's not a lot more you can do to it.

0:55:030:55:07

The property, I feel, would appeal to first-time buyers.

0:55:070:55:10

It would appeal to them on the basis

0:55:100:55:12

that it's going to be at the lower end of the marketplace.

0:55:120:55:15

Around here there's a few semi-detached properties,

0:55:150:55:18

but this would be perfect for them because there's no work needed,

0:55:180:55:21

and will be an affordable price.

0:55:210:55:24

What could the property sell for?

0:55:240:55:26

The resale value of this property, when it's completely finished,

0:55:260:55:30

I would put between £80,000 and £85,000.

0:55:300:55:34

Once completed, I would look to market this property

0:55:340:55:37

offers in the region of £85,000.

0:55:370:55:39

Those valuations would give Joe a profit of between 9,500

0:55:390:55:42

and £14,500 before costs and expenses.

0:55:420:55:46

That's pretty much what I was expecting,

0:55:480:55:50

so I'm quite happy with that, yeah.

0:55:500:55:54

Although Joe's going to live here for the short term,

0:55:540:55:57

longer term, his work may take him anywhere in the UK,

0:55:570:56:00

so what do the experts estimate for rentals?

0:56:000:56:04

The rental valuation I'd put on this when it is finished

0:56:040:56:07

is between £475 per calendar month

0:56:070:56:10

and £520 per calendar month.

0:56:100:56:13

Once completed, I would look to rent this property

0:56:130:56:16

at £450 per calendar month.

0:56:160:56:17

Yeah. I think that's pretty much what I was expecting.

0:56:170:56:20

I think I was expecting around £475,

0:56:200:56:23

so to get even higher than that would be a bonus.

0:56:230:56:26

With Joe very nearly ready to move into his new home,

0:56:260:56:30

is this the start of his very own property portfolio?

0:56:300:56:33

It's been a success as in I've finally got my foot on the property ladder.

0:56:330:56:37

If I'd gone for a finished house, I couldn't have afforded it.

0:56:370:56:40

This way I've been able to get my first property.

0:56:400:56:43

It's also been a reasonably enjoyable experience,

0:56:430:56:46

stressful at times, but I'd definitely do it again.

0:56:460:56:50

We hope you've enjoyed watching, and learnt something along the way.

0:56:520:56:56

Join us next time for more auction-room action

0:56:560:56:59

-on Homes Under The Hammer.

-See you then.

-Goodbye.

-Goodbye.

0:56:590:57:02

Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd

0:57:020:57:06

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0:57:060:57:10

Martin Roberts and Lucy Alexander visit a former martial arts centre in Cardiff, a property in Watford and a house in Manchester. All of the properties have been sold at auction - find out who bought them and what they paid when they went under the hammer.