Episode 85 Homes Under the Hammer


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Episode 85

Martin Roberts and Lucy Alexander visit a lock house in Hertford, a house in London and a three-bedroom house in Manchester.


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Transcript


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-Welcome to the show.

-We're always being told to save for the future.

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That's especially important now

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with people looking to supplement their pension

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or invest their savings.

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Property is an attractive option and you can find it in the auction rooms.

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If, like us, you hope property will be a fruitful investment,

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you've got to make sure you buy wisely.

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That means doing your research, so you know what you're taking on.

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So did our buyers find some good deals at the auctions today?

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Let's take a look.

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In Hertford, a lock house that makes me forget I'm here to work.

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How fantastic to sit here on a summer's evening, glass of wine...

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In London, I get up close and personal with a house in need of a hug.

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Hold me close, don't let me go.

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I don't think it's going to make anybody feel sentimental.

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And in Higher Blackley in Manchester,

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a property served with a slice of romance.

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It's like walking into the insides of a fluffed-up wedding cake.

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All these properties were sold at auction.

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We'll find out who bought them and what they paid

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-when they went under the hammer.

-Sold.

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I'm in picturesque Hertford in Hertfordshire.

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It feels a world away from the centre of London,

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which is just 19 miles south, and I couldn't be happier.

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One of the things that I love about Homes Under The Hammer

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is the variety of property that comes up at the auction.

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And today is no exception.

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Let me give you some clues.

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It's got its own mooring, it's right by the side of the canal...

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That's right. It's the old lock-keeper's cottage.

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Fantastic!

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The lock-keeper lucked out, eh? What an impressive house to work from.

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Built in the late 1800s and guided at auction at 95,000,

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it could easily grace a box of chocolates.

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As for the setting, it's just glorious, isn't it?

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A truly idyllic spot.

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# How lucky can you get? #

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So what's in store when you open the door?

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Well, it's not quite as cute inside as it is on the outside.

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This is one big living room area, I suppose.

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Nice it's got an open fire but it's being let down

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by the, well, by the wallpaper

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and these beams, they just don't particularly work.

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But you've got stairs up to the bedrooms there

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and then through into this anteroom here

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and another slight disappointment, that's the kitchen -

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as you can see, absolutely tiny.

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So a bit of internal jiggery-pokery required

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but something I've just spotted which is much more serious is this,

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a fairly nasty crack.

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But look at this. I wouldn't mind hazarding a guess

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that when this was on display,

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that was on there like that, covering up the crack.

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So, a tip - if you go in a property, and there's something like this on the wall, take a look behind it

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because that is quite serious.

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Yes, beware makeshift wall coverings,

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as they could be hiding a multitude of sins.

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Of course, getting a survey done is a good idea, whenever possible.

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This house really does need some serious reconfiguring.

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As things stand, it doesn't feel all that homely inside.

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The large lounge is pleasant

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but the rooms leading off it all feel a bit unnecessary

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and I would definitely open the kitchen up by knocking through to this anteroom

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to make better use of the space.

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Time to head upstairs.

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Well, up here, two fairly small bedrooms, so not that interesting.

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However, what really is interesting is the history of this place.

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There's been a lock-keeper's cottage here since the 1770s.

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The original one was knocked down to be replaced by this one in 1887

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and what's even more interesting

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is that I actually have a list of all the lock keepers

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going back to 1773,

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when James Shadbolt was paid eight shillings a week

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to look after the navigation near Hertford and the upper turnpike.

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It goes on, there's another here.

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John Smith in 1873, he was a long-time invalid.

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His work was done by wife and child.

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And it goes all the way up to 1939, when Henry Silver was appointed

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on 29th of July and paid 26 shillings a week

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and a house and a uniform.

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Absolutely fantastic.

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It's not just a house you're buying but a piece of history.

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Unfortunately, there's no access by car, only by towpath.

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From a practical point of view,

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quite apart from lugging shopping bags,

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it could make getting tradesmen and materials here for any renovations quite tricky.

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And the location isn't recognised by sat nav.

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However, it does come with a mooring facility and has a lovely garden.

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Well, one of the great joys of owning this house

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is the garden that surrounds it.

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How fantastic to sit here on a summer's evening,

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glass of wine, just watching the world go by.

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Unfortunately, the world is going to be watching you as they go by

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because this is a public footpath.

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It runs right in front of the lock-keeper's cottage here

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and it's fairly actively used,

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so if it's privacy you're after, this ain't the place for you.

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It was the place for someone, though, as it sold at auction.

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I wanted to get a local estate agent's take on this house,

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guided at 95,000.

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It's got a lot of potential. It's a great location,

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out here in the middle of nowhere,

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but it's also only a five-minute walk from amenities,

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so, yeah, I'm impressed in terms of its potential, definitely.

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You'd need a new kitchen, a new bathroom.

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You'd need to start from scratch. It's quite a big project.

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But I still think it's a project that will work for somebody,

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providing they don't go too crazy on bath taps and that kind of thing.

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Wise words, there. Stick to that budget and never lose sight of the end value.

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Speaking of which, how much could someone stand to make?

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Rental per calendar month is roughly around £1,200 per month.

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And a sell-on value?

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When renovated, I would expect around £385,000.

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Well, people love finding somewhere different to live

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and this place is certainly that.

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But it doesn't come without negatives.

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I wouldn't like people traipsing right in front of my living room

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and you've got access issues coming out of your ears.

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However, I'm sure that someone fell in love with it

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when it went under the hammer.

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To lot 50, now, which is the lock house.

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I think we've got some phone bids. I've also got a proxy bid myself.

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So over to you. Where would you like to kick off?

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How much? 90? 100,000 anywhere?

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Got 100. 110.

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Bidding on the property was fierce,

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with several parties keen to lock down the lock house.

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We rejoin the auction as bids reach 265,000.

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265. 266.

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267. 268. 269.

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269. 270?

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271, madam? Yeah? 272.

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One more crack? You're both sort of very close.

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If not, 271. 272 anywhere else?

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If not, 271, the first time, second time, third and last time.

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Have you all done? GAVEL BANGS

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Sold, 271. Well done. Nice-looking property.

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The successful bid of £271,000,

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£176,000 over the guide price,

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came from trainee lawyer Marie.

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She was at the auction with her brother Mark.

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Marie was bidding on behalf of her dad, Ty,

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a retired council worker.

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I met father and daughter back at the house to find out more.

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-Marie, Ty, good to meet you both.

-Hello.

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-What a lovely property you have bought.

-Thank you.

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-It's gorgeous, isn't it?

-Yes.

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Tell me why you wanted to buy it.

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Basically, we saw it in the auction catalogue.

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I was looking for myself, originally, then we saw it for Dad and Mum -

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fell in love with it.

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-So you were bidding at the auction...

-Yeah.

-..on behalf of...

-My dad.

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-Where was Mum and Dad?

-We were in Turkey.

-On holiday?

-On holiday.

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And when did you hear that you'd got it?

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My son was on the phone to me

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and I was expecting about 1.15 Turkish time,

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which is 11.15 London time.

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It came about 1.34, about 20 minutes later.

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That was the longest wait.

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-So you were on the phone back in...?

-Yeah.

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My brother was telling them what we were bidding.

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They were going, "OK, OK, go for it, go for it." Yeah.

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Now, it went a lot over the guide price

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but I suspect the guide price was probably quite low.

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It was ridiculously low.

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-I don't know whether they did it deliberately...

-Probably.

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-..in order to attract people.

-They do that.

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When we came to see the place, there was a traffic jam.

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-We couldn't get down to it.

-If they'd priced it at 500,000, nobody would have turned up.

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-So why were you so keen to buy it?

-We just love this place.

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-Tell me why.

-There's so much potential, so much we can do

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and it's so beautiful.

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It sure is - or it could be, depending on what they decide to do to the property.

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What extensions and improvements are you planning to make?

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We're going to renovate it. We're going to enlarge the kitchen.

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We're putting a conservatory on the side.

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-And leaving the front as it is?

-Exactly as it is.

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We're going to change the windows but in the same style.

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The main focus will be for us is the balance

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and harmony

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and integrity of the building,

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so that it's not a stuck-on conservatory - it will match,

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with the gable on the side.

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I mean, it is so cute, isn't it?

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How are you going to expand it without ruining that cuteness?

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-We've got some specialist architects coming...

-Right.

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..who are going to advise us.

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It's only two bedrooms. Is that big enough?

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Another reason we bought it is because we've got mooring rights,

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so the next project is to get a barge, Dutch barge,

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and convert it into a two or three-bedroom place.

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-Right, so you don't have a boat at the moment...

-But we're going to.

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Me and my brother and friends will stay on the barge

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while Mum and Dad live in the house,

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-when we come to visit.

-Oh, wow. How cool is that?

-Very cool.

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I'll say. What a novel way of extending your living space.

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Ty's budget is around £50,000.

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He has had a fair amount of renovation experience,

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although nothing on this scale or to the standard he's planning

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for this retirement pad.

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What involvement are you and your brother going to have in the renovation?

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I can see us stripping walls, painting, things like that.

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Anything to help out - I think that's what we'll do.

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-It's a house that you want to get involved in.

-It's gorgeous, you know.

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Who'd mind being here? It's nice to get out of the city.

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Isn't it just? But the time to relax hasn't come yet.

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Ty's aiming to complete the renovation in six months.

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This includes the time it takes to get permission from the council

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and British Waterways to carry out any works.

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The Waterways sold the property on with a covenant in place,

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so Ty must contact them before he can proceed with his plans.

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Well, congratulations. Well done.

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-I'm a little bit jealous but I wish you all the best.

-Thank you.

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Ty and his family are clearly delighted to have bought this property, and who can blame them?

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Find out what they do with it later in the programme.

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I've travelled to Plaistow in East London,

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a vibrant and well-connected part of the capital.

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It's also the birthplace of singer and actor David Essex.

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The question is does the auction lot I'm here to see have showbiz quality

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and will it have the potential to be turned into a star?

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# I'm coming home soon

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# I'm going to make you a star. #

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If the other properties in the street are anything to go by, maybe...

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Or maybe not. Here it is, in all its burnt-out glory.

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Look at that! Hold me close, don't let me go.

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I don't think it's going to make anybody feel sentimental.

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But it was guided at 155,000,

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so maybe somebody will want to get up close and personal with this house.

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Let's have a look inside this two-bedroom, Victorian property.

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There's obviously some fire damage,

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although, thankfully, no-one was injured.

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But whilst it doesn't look so welcoming from the outside,

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appearances can be deceptive.

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# Can't judge a book by looking at the cover... #

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Well, it's certainly one huge room that you walk into here.

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That's because the owner has taken out this wall

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and created this rather large, open-plan living space.

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You know, you can be in either camp.

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You like the big space or you would reinstate the wall

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and have two reception rooms.

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That might be a good idea if you're planning on letting to tenants.

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But one thing I have noticed, which is a big old tick,

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the windows are in really good nick.

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Seeing those boards outside sometimes frightens you.

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You think, "I may need to replace the windows."

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But in this case, they're in really good condition,

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so, you know, a bit of money saved there.

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The kitchen, well, half the ceiling's fallen down.

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That really does need a bit of a reconfigure.

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But my guess is that most of the damage is upstairs

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because it doesn't look too bad down here.

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I'm going to go upstairs and check it out. Wish me luck.

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Yes, it's certainly in a bad way up here

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and you can really smell the burning.

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Gosh, it's incredibly shabby

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and it needs a lot of attention.

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You can see one of the bedrooms there is just falling apart.

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All the windowsills have melted.

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The second bedroom through here is in a bad way.

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I'm not going to venture through there because it's dangerous.

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And the bathroom is going to completely need ripping out

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and starting over.

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One thing's for sure - a structural survey is needed here.

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Anyone buying a property should obtain a structural survey before parting with their pennies

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but here, it's crucial.

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The fire damage may just look superficial to the untrained eye

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but could explain all sorts of nasty surprises.

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Getting the gas and electrics looked at is an absolute must.

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If you're thinking of purchasing something similar,

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always get the experts in.

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The layout here could benefit from a rejig.

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The large bathroom could be made into a third bedroom

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but that would mean creating a new bathroom downstairs.

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Alternatively and less expensively,

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the large lounge could be split in two

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to create a downstairs bedroom.

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It's great for a property to have possibilities

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but it all depends on who's going to live in it.

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Now, if you were thinking of letting this,

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it's an ideal garden for tenants, as it's paved and low-maintenance.

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It's not the biggest outside space

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but one way to improve it

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would be to have some large doors leading out from the kitchen

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where that window is.

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Now, after looking around a fire-damaged property all morning,

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it's quite nice to get some fresh air.

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There was a light drizzle but a rainy day is ideal to view a property,

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as it lets you see if the guttering is doing its job or not,

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as the case may be.

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# Let it rain Let it rain

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# Let it rain, rain, rain... #

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Looking at this guttering and downpipe,

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there's no drain here to collect the rainwater.

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But at least there's a slight incline to help the water escape

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and flow out into the road

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but I can't help think it's far from ideal.

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On a rainy day, you don't want a big muddy puddle

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right outside your front door.

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We asked a local estate agent to dish the dirt

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on this fire-damaged property

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and its £155,000 guide price.

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It needs a little bit of refurbishment!

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I think it needs new wiring,

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a new central heating system.

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I would personally take the whole lot out and start again.

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It's got great potential, though. It's a nice family home.

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If the purchaser does the required work, what could they sell the house on for?

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Approximately £200,000 as a two-bed.

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As a three-bed, I would put it on the market for £225,000.

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What monthly rental could it earn?

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As a two-bed, you'd be looking at a rental income of about £1,000.

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As a three-bed, you would be looking at a rental income of about £1,200.

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Dangerous, dingy and burnt-out,

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this house requires an extensive makeover.

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It won't be a cheap job but once renovated, well,

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it could be a nice little earner

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and so maybe it could be a good rental investment.

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Let's find out who agreed with me as we go to auction.

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I like this lot.

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150, anywhere? Yes? 150.

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Thank you. 150. 151.

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152. 153.

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154, 155.

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156, 157.

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158. 159.

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160, 161.

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162, 163.

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164, 165.

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166. 167?

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168, 169.

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170. 171?

0:19:150:19:17

172. 173?

0:19:170:19:19

174. 175.

0:19:200:19:22

176?

0:19:230:19:25

Have a think. 176 elsewhere?

0:19:260:19:29

176? Another 1,000. If not, 175 for the first time.

0:19:300:19:35

Second time. Third and last time. Are you all done?

0:19:350:19:39

Sold, 175. Well bought.

0:19:400:19:42

That successful bid of 175,000 came from entrepreneur Sidney,

0:19:420:19:48

who attended the auction with his niece.

0:19:480:19:50

He runs and owns a children's nursery

0:19:500:19:52

and an ink-cartridge refilling business,

0:19:520:19:55

plus he develops property as a sideline

0:19:550:19:58

and he's no stranger to this street.

0:19:580:20:00

Sidney, congratulations. Great news for you that you managed to secure this on auction day.

0:20:090:20:14

Why did you want to buy it?

0:20:140:20:16

I bought my first house on this street 11 years ago.

0:20:160:20:19

-Really?

-Yeah. And when I saw it, I thought it would be nice to have this as well.

0:20:190:20:24

So is this an identical house to the other one you own?

0:20:240:20:26

It is identical but this is a bit bigger.

0:20:260:20:29

So what do you want to do with this and why did you want another house?

0:20:290:20:32

I want to rent it out, do it up a bit and then rent it out

0:20:320:20:35

and just for investment, really, for the future.

0:20:350:20:38

-So did you view this property prior to the auction?

-I did.

0:20:380:20:41

Did the fire damage not put you off?

0:20:410:20:43

Not really because I sort of saw...

0:20:430:20:46

Well, I know how much damage was done. It was kind of cosmetic.

0:20:460:20:50

No structural damage.

0:20:500:20:52

-So did you get a structural survey before the auction?

-Yes, yes.

0:20:520:20:56

-So you could read that and have the safety net of knowing there was nothing wrong with it.

-Yes.

0:20:560:21:01

Sidney made the sensible decision to have this surveyed before the auction.

0:21:010:21:06

This means he can cost the job properly

0:21:060:21:09

and knowing he doesn't have to rectify any serious structural damage

0:21:090:21:13

will save him some serious cash.

0:21:130:21:16

So what is the big plan? Where are you going to start?

0:21:160:21:19

-You've got some work to do before you can let this.

-That's right.

0:21:190:21:23

I'm going to start upstairs, stripping the ceiling down,

0:21:230:21:26

the plaster of the wall and replastering

0:21:260:21:29

and then a partition is coming down here

0:21:290:21:31

and obviously the wiring is redone, the plumbing, central heating,

0:21:310:21:36

boiler, everything.

0:21:360:21:38

So you're going to partition this room. That's interesting.

0:21:380:21:41

That's what my tenants have asked for. I have tenants lined up already.

0:21:410:21:45

-So currently it's a two-bedroom property...

-Yes.

0:21:450:21:48

..with a bathroom upstairs. Are you keeping that configuration?

0:21:480:21:52

For now, I am, because I need to get it done as quickly as possible.

0:21:520:21:56

-So that means you'll have two reception rooms downstairs?

-Yes.

0:21:560:22:00

-And are you going to keep that as two reception rooms?

-Yeah.

0:22:000:22:04

Well, the tenants can do what they want.

0:22:040:22:06

Sidney's in a good position here.

0:22:060:22:08

His tenants are ready to move in and pay £1,100 a month in rent.

0:22:080:22:12

For now, he's holding off the more pricy idea

0:22:120:22:15

of moving the bathroom downstairs

0:22:150:22:17

because there's some pressure when it comes to how he financed the property.

0:22:170:22:21

The bulk of it is from my savings

0:22:210:22:23

and then I got some money from my friends and my wife

0:22:230:22:26

and as long as it's all done,

0:22:260:22:28

hopefully, remortgage it and give them their money back.

0:22:280:22:31

-Are you paying them interest?

-Yes, I agreed 1% interest a month.

0:22:310:22:36

-So that is fair.

-Yes.

0:22:360:22:37

-And because of that, it's allowed you to buy this property.

-That's right.

0:22:370:22:41

So you've got to do it as quick as poss,

0:22:410:22:43

-so the pressure is on, financially, for you.

-That's right.

0:22:430:22:46

# Cos the heat is on... #

0:22:460:22:49

Yes, the heat is on for Sidney.

0:22:490:22:51

He's given himself six to eight weeks to get this place up to scratch.

0:22:510:22:54

And although he's got eight other properties,

0:22:540:22:57

this is his biggest project to date.

0:22:570:22:59

# The heat is...

0:22:590:23:01

# On... #

0:23:020:23:04

I've never done this much work before.

0:23:040:23:06

Yeah, this is a major project for me.

0:23:060:23:09

-And are you intending on doing the work yourself?

-No.

0:23:090:23:12

-So you're getting guys in?

-I'll leave it to the professionals.

0:23:120:23:15

Well, for an undertaking like this, that's exactly the right decision.

0:23:150:23:20

It's not as if he's got plenty of time on his hands.

0:23:200:23:23

As well as his property portfolio,

0:23:230:23:25

he owns and runs a nursery for under-fives

0:23:250:23:28

and has an ink-cartridge refilling franchise.

0:23:280:23:32

How do you find the time to keep over everything?

0:23:320:23:35

Well, the nursery has got its own manager.

0:23:350:23:37

The shop has its own manager as well

0:23:370:23:39

and all I do is just, you know, pop in whenever they need me.

0:23:390:23:43

-Great job for you.

-Thank you.

0:23:430:23:45

So are you a busy guy? Are you running around checking everything out?

0:23:450:23:49

Yeah, I would say I am fairly busy, yes.

0:23:490:23:51

Keeps me out of trouble.

0:23:510:23:53

What is your budget? How much money have you got to do the work?

0:23:530:23:56

I have got 15-20,000.

0:23:560:23:59

-And that's tops?

-20,000, tops.

0:23:590:24:02

Sidney, good luck with this project. I hope it's done in time

0:24:020:24:05

-and that your tenants are very happy.

-Thank you very much.

0:24:050:24:08

Sidney isn't fazed by this job.

0:24:100:24:11

In fact, Mr Organised relishes the challenge.

0:24:110:24:14

£15-20,000, that is a healthy budget

0:24:140:24:17

but will it be enough to overhaul this property

0:24:170:24:20

and will he complete it all in just six to eight weeks?

0:24:200:24:23

Those tenants are waiting and lined up.

0:24:230:24:25

You can find out how he gets on later in the programme.

0:24:250:24:28

Coming up, this house in Higher Blackley feels a bit off colour.

0:24:300:24:35

But what is that?

0:24:350:24:37

I don't like to see any discolouration like that.

0:24:370:24:39

In Plaistow, we find out if Sidney kept a close eye on proceedings.

0:24:410:24:45

I have to be honest, I wasn't here.

0:24:450:24:47

I was away in Japan for most of the project. I was away for a month.

0:24:470:24:50

But first, did Ty sink or swim renovating the lock house?

0:24:510:24:56

It took nearly 14 months and that cost us a lot of money.

0:24:560:25:00

Now we're back in Hertford,

0:25:030:25:05

where Ty spent £271,000 on this charming lock-keeper's house.

0:25:050:25:10

When I met Ty and his daughter Marie, they were over the moon

0:25:110:25:15

about the purchase.

0:25:150:25:16

-So why were you so keen to buy it?

-We just love this place.

0:25:160:25:20

-Tell me why.

-So much potential, so much we can do

0:25:200:25:24

and it's so beautiful.

0:25:240:25:26

Ty and his wife bought it to retire to

0:25:260:25:30

and planned to renovate it to suit their needs for 50,000

0:25:300:25:33

over a six-month period.

0:25:330:25:34

So did they manage to unlock the full potential of the lock house?

0:25:340:25:39

Well, nearly two years later, we're back to find out.

0:25:390:25:43

The inside looks amazing

0:26:220:26:25

and green-fingered Ty turned what was just grass

0:26:250:26:28

into a breathtaking garden.

0:26:280:26:31

And of course, there's that extension.

0:26:320:26:35

This is the new kitchen, which has been designed by my wife.

0:26:370:26:40

This side used to be the little lean-to

0:26:400:26:44

and now this is the shower room.

0:26:440:26:47

That's the garden room with the big concertina doors.

0:26:480:26:52

This new fireplace we bought

0:26:530:26:56

and the new wood stove will be going into it.

0:26:560:27:00

This is the area where we'll be spending more time

0:27:000:27:03

because you can see the whole garden

0:27:030:27:05

and it's absolutely wonderful if the sun is shining.

0:27:050:27:08

And they didn't just extend outwards but upwards, too,

0:27:080:27:12

where an extra bathroom and bedroom were added,

0:27:120:27:15

plus there's now a fabulous bonus area

0:27:150:27:17

leading off from the master bedroom.

0:27:170:27:19

Well, as you can see, this is the new part

0:27:190:27:22

of the extension.

0:27:220:27:24

We're very pleased with this.

0:27:240:27:26

As you can imagine, on a Sunday morning,

0:27:260:27:29

having a coffee, sitting down, reading the paper,

0:27:290:27:33

as if the whole sight of The Meads is your garden.

0:27:330:27:37

Absolutely wonderful on a sunny day.

0:27:370:27:40

You can really tell that Ty and his wife put their hearts and souls

0:27:420:27:46

into turning this house into their ideal home.

0:27:460:27:49

And they did it without compromising the unmistakable character and charm

0:27:490:27:54

this place already had to offer.

0:27:540:27:57

It was designed by the architect, basically,

0:27:570:27:59

and we had to match everything,

0:27:590:28:01

otherwise it won't be uniform and go with the character of the house.

0:28:010:28:06

I think it's come out beautifully, particularly the garden room.

0:28:060:28:10

Stunning as the house now looks,

0:28:100:28:12

many unexpected difficulties have had to be overcome,

0:28:120:28:15

including waiting for nesting bats to leave the premises

0:28:150:28:18

and getting cement brought to the site by pipeline.

0:28:180:28:22

And that's not all.

0:28:220:28:23

We had to have three surveys.

0:28:230:28:26

It took nearly 14 months and that cost us a lot of money.

0:28:260:28:31

We had to liaise with the Environment Agency,

0:28:310:28:34

then get permission from British Waterways.

0:28:340:28:38

Then we had an ecological survey. We had a tree survey.

0:28:380:28:42

Then we had a flood-risk assessment, a soil test.

0:28:420:28:46

So all sorts of statutory regulations we had to meet.

0:28:460:28:50

These are all things to bear in mind

0:28:500:28:52

if you're considering buying a house in need of work

0:28:520:28:55

on a lockside location.

0:28:550:28:58

The list of regulations that must be met is long

0:28:580:29:00

and you should be aware of this before plunging in.

0:29:000:29:04

You also need a good dose of patience.

0:29:040:29:06

Also worth keeping in mind is that if your property is isolated,

0:29:060:29:09

security is key.

0:29:090:29:11

Because of the unique location of this house,

0:29:110:29:14

as we don't have any neighbours,

0:29:140:29:17

we thought it's important that we have a good CCTV camera

0:29:170:29:22

covering all the sides of the house.

0:29:220:29:24

Ty and his wife have waited and worked for two years

0:29:260:29:29

to get this place right for them

0:29:290:29:30

and plan to move in as soon as they've sold their current property.

0:29:300:29:34

Their original budget for the work was £50,000

0:29:350:29:38

but with everything they've done, it ended up costing more.

0:29:380:29:42

Just under 100,000.

0:29:420:29:44

Over budget perhaps, but they did build a much larger extension

0:29:440:29:49

than originally intended

0:29:490:29:50

and, yes, they've still got plans to buy a barge

0:29:500:29:53

for their mooring for extra guest rooms.

0:29:530:29:55

We invited two local estate agents to the lock house

0:29:590:30:03

to hear their opinions on the place.

0:30:030:30:05

Very impressed. Much bigger than I anticipated.

0:30:060:30:09

The extension really does transform the house

0:30:090:30:12

and the roof terrace is another feature I hadn't bargained for,

0:30:120:30:15

so quite surprised, pleasantly surprised, I would say, yeah.

0:30:150:30:19

First impressions - stunning location, it's a complete one-off

0:30:190:30:23

and there's nothing else like this in the area

0:30:230:30:26

and the owners have done a fantastic job

0:30:260:30:28

of refurbishing and extending the house.

0:30:280:30:31

So whilst the renovation may not have been plain sailing,

0:30:310:30:34

the agents are agreed that this really is a special place.

0:30:340:30:37

It's perfect for Ty and his wife to retire to.

0:30:370:30:40

They purchased the property for 271,000

0:30:400:30:44

and spent around £100,000 on the renovations,

0:30:440:30:47

making their total outlay 371,000.

0:30:470:30:51

If they did an about-turn and decided to sell,

0:30:510:30:54

what could it be worth?

0:30:540:30:56

I would expect this house to achieve in the region of £400-425,000.

0:30:560:31:02

I would anticipate an asking price of just under £500,000

0:31:020:31:05

and for it to get around that sort of figure for the right buyer,

0:31:050:31:09

who wants this kind of lifestyle.

0:31:090:31:11

I think it's very good, very good.

0:31:110:31:14

But the fact is that

0:31:140:31:17

I wanted to keep this place better than we found it

0:31:170:31:21

and that's the satisfaction, basically.

0:31:210:31:24

Satisfying indeed and those somewhat wide-ranging valuations

0:31:240:31:29

would see Ty coming up roses,

0:31:290:31:31

with a potential pre-tax profit of between £29,000 and £129,000.

0:31:310:31:37

But Ty and his wife have no intention of selling.

0:31:370:31:40

All their patience and hard work has paid off

0:31:400:31:43

and it sounds like they have truly found the key to their future happiness.

0:31:430:31:47

I think the peace and tranquillity

0:31:470:31:49

and walking by the towpath and living here

0:31:490:31:54

with a lot of space

0:31:540:31:56

and I think it's enhanced my life, at least.

0:31:560:32:01

I'm in the town of Blackley, which forms part of Greater Manchester.

0:32:100:32:13

If you're looking at investing in an area,

0:32:160:32:18

it's good to choose somewhere where lots of investment has been put in by other people,

0:32:180:32:23

in this case, Higher Blackley, where the council have spent £46 million in recent times,

0:32:230:32:28

improving the housing stock and the environment,

0:32:280:32:31

planting trees, improving gates and parking and things like that.

0:32:310:32:34

So that's a fantastic start for this property.

0:32:340:32:37

It's a three-bed, Victorian end of terrace.

0:32:370:32:40

It had a guide price of £48,000. Let's take a look inside.

0:32:400:32:43

Points for the area and a promising start,

0:32:450:32:47

with the auction catalogue stating that the house is double glazed and has central heating.

0:32:470:32:52

It looks pretty tidy from the outside.

0:32:520:32:54

Let's hope the inside follows suit.

0:32:540:32:57

So what have we got?

0:32:580:33:00

Oh, nice high ceilings. They're absolutely lovely

0:33:000:33:03

and even some of the original coving.

0:33:030:33:05

Most of the walls don't look too bad but what is that?

0:33:050:33:09

I don't like to see any discolouration like that

0:33:090:33:12

on the plaster.

0:33:120:33:13

Obviously, some damp issues

0:33:130:33:15

and you never know how much damage has been caused to the floorboards and the joists.

0:33:150:33:20

Let's see if it gets any better.

0:33:200:33:21

# So I thought I'd get a little messy... #

0:33:210:33:26

So, a bit of a messy start

0:33:260:33:29

and past the stairs, there's a second reception room.

0:33:290:33:31

It's slightly less stripped back but could do with redecoration.

0:33:310:33:36

So through to the kitchen. Nice grey-tiled floor. We like that.

0:33:360:33:41

The room itself, not a bad size and lots of light coming in

0:33:410:33:44

but it is going to end up just being a shell

0:33:440:33:47

because the units want ripping out and totally replacing.

0:33:470:33:52

And you're going to have to do something about all this Artex.

0:33:520:33:56

It's like walking into the insides of a fluffed-up wedding cake or something.

0:33:560:34:01

It's completely bonkers.

0:34:010:34:03

So how do you get rid of it? Well, here's some DIY tips.

0:34:030:34:06

You can potentially steam it off with lots of effort.

0:34:060:34:09

There are proprietary things you can paint on it to remove it.

0:34:090:34:13

The simplest thing is probably just to plaster over the top of it.

0:34:130:34:17

Whatever you do, though, if it's old Artex, over 30 years old,

0:34:170:34:21

it may well contain asbestos,

0:34:210:34:23

so what you mustn't do is sand it or break it.

0:34:230:34:25

Either way, it's got to go.

0:34:250:34:28

# It's a nice day for a white wedding... #

0:34:280:34:33

If you want to marry this property up to modern tastes,

0:34:330:34:36

smooth walls and ceilings are the way to go.

0:34:360:34:38

They'll be needed throughout,

0:34:380:34:40

including in the three good-sized bedrooms.

0:34:400:34:43

I'm not really a fan of Artex.

0:34:430:34:46

The bathroom's a tad small but overall, for a terraced property,

0:34:460:34:49

I'm impressed with the size.

0:34:490:34:51

And that matters - believe me!

0:34:510:34:54

# It's a nice day to start again. #

0:34:540:34:58

Now the property is an end of terrace, which has lots of advantages.

0:34:580:35:03

For a start, you get an extra entrance at the side.

0:35:030:35:06

You've got no neighbour on this side, so it halves the chance of having noisy neighbours

0:35:060:35:10

and you've got extra windows to let more light in, so lots of pros.

0:35:100:35:15

The only negatives are that you might have people hanging around here,

0:35:150:35:19

people walking past or kids playing ball games against this wall,

0:35:190:35:22

but overall, the pros definitely outweigh the cons.

0:35:220:35:26

But does a local estate agent agree?

0:35:270:35:30

The property is in need of renovation.

0:35:310:35:34

It's a good size, nice high ceilings, good-sized kitchen

0:35:340:35:38

and I think with a little bit of work it should be a very nice family home.

0:35:380:35:42

And if that was done, what could the potential value be?

0:35:420:35:45

The market's a little bit slow at the moment

0:35:470:35:49

but at the right price the property should sell.

0:35:490:35:52

I'd value the property at between £70-£75,000.

0:35:520:35:55

Perhaps this would be more suitable for the rental market?

0:35:560:36:00

If it was my property, I would put it for rent

0:36:000:36:03

and then wait for the market to pick up and then possibly sell it.

0:36:030:36:07

I'd value this property for rent

0:36:070:36:08

at between £450 and £475 per calendar month.

0:36:080:36:12

Well, there is a bit of money needing to be spent on this place -

0:36:140:36:18

a new kitchen, bathroom, and that damp issue needs to be addressed.

0:36:180:36:21

But spend a bit of money and this could be a great little property.

0:36:210:36:25

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

0:36:250:36:28

Lot 37. What's this one worth today?

0:36:310:36:34

£40,000? I'm away. 40 bid.

0:36:340:36:36

40,000 I have. Do I see 42?

0:36:360:36:38

40 I have, 42 I will take. 42 bid.

0:36:380:36:42

42 I'm at. Do I see 44? At 44,000. 48?

0:36:430:36:47

46. OK. At 46,000, then.

0:36:470:36:50

48 anywhere? At 48. Do I see 50?

0:36:500:36:54

At £50,000. 50 I'm bid. Do I see 51?

0:36:540:36:57

52, anywhere? At 52. 53?

0:36:570:37:00

At 53,000. Are we all done?

0:37:000:37:02

I'll take a half. At 53 and a half. 53,500. 54?

0:37:020:37:06

54 and a half at the back. 55, may I say?

0:37:060:37:08

55,000. At 55. At 55,000. Are we all done?

0:37:080:37:13

At 55,000 for the first time.

0:37:130:37:15

Second time. Third and final time.

0:37:150:37:18

At £55,000, it's yours, sir, seated. Not a bad price.

0:37:180:37:22

That successful bid of 55,000 was made by property developing husband and wife team Hazel and Andy.

0:37:220:37:29

# So happy together... #

0:37:290:37:33

-Hazel, Andy, great to meet you both.

-And you.

0:37:340:37:36

-Congratulations.

-Thank you.

-Tell me why you wanted to buy this place.

0:37:360:37:40

It was a fantastic opportunity.

0:37:400:37:42

Lovely area. Great rental property. Another one to add to our portfolio.

0:37:420:37:46

Ooh, portfolio. Tell me more.

0:37:460:37:48

Well, portfolio - we've currently got three? Four?

0:37:480:37:52

-This is our fourth one.

-You don't know?!

0:37:520:37:55

-We bought another one...

-You don't know?!

0:37:550:37:57

Is it three, is it four, is it ten?

0:37:570:38:00

We bought a fifth one the week after this one,

0:38:000:38:02

so we'll be up to five.

0:38:020:38:04

# One, two, three, four Tell me that you love me more... #

0:38:040:38:08

Let's hope their maths is a bit better when it comes to budgets

0:38:080:38:12

but just to clarify, Hazel and Andy have previously renovated three properties,

0:38:120:38:17

which they now rent out.

0:38:170:38:20

This terraced house was their fourth purchase

0:38:200:38:22

and they bought a fifth around the same time,

0:38:220:38:24

so they're taking on a double whammy by renovating both properties.

0:38:240:38:28

Good going for a couple who have only been playing the property developing game for two years,

0:38:300:38:34

since giving up their previous jobs.

0:38:340:38:36

-I was in IT and Hazel was a photographer.

-Fantastic.

0:38:360:38:41

-What kind of photography?

-Portraits, mostly.

0:38:410:38:44

-Studio work, lots of kiddies.

-Right. And dogs and...

-Yeah.

0:38:440:38:48

Everything. And grandmas and things. Yeah, it was all good fun.

0:38:480:38:52

So both of you have, what, given up your jobs?

0:38:520:38:55

We were living down south. I'm from up north, round the corner from here.

0:38:550:38:59

And a mid-life crisis, so we decided to move up north,

0:38:590:39:02

sell my business that we had

0:39:020:39:04

and we moved up and got into property,

0:39:040:39:07

which has always been a passion of mine.

0:39:070:39:09

-It's my thing, really.

-Mostly induced by you.

0:39:090:39:13

-By me?

-It's all your fault.

-My fault? Oh, OK.

0:39:130:39:16

I was about to say, "What created your mid-life crisis?"

0:39:160:39:19

-I've never been accused of bringing on a mid-life crisis.

-It's watching you every morning, you and Lucy.

0:39:190:39:24

It's something I've always wanted to get into. It's your fault.

0:39:240:39:28

-Were you consulted on this, Andy?

-I was quite happy to join in.

0:39:280:39:32

It's a great buzz doing it

0:39:320:39:36

and then when you walk out the door

0:39:360:39:38

-and you look back at what you've done, it's quite nice.

-Yeah.

0:39:380:39:42

And having given up the jobs you were doing

0:39:420:39:44

and having taken on this, how do you feel?

0:39:440:39:46

It's a nice lifestyle, actually.

0:39:460:39:49

We just had six weeks where we had nothing to do, no houses.

0:39:490:39:53

All of a sudden we've got two now, so we've got six months of work.

0:39:530:39:57

What about the timing you've picked to do it?

0:39:570:39:59

-It's interesting times in the property world.

-Absolutely.

0:39:590:40:03

It's a brilliant time to buy

0:40:030:40:05

and our plan is probably to rent them for ten years

0:40:050:40:09

-and then sell to retire, hopefully.

-Right.

0:40:090:40:12

-And so you're very positive about the property market?

-Yes.

0:40:120:40:15

-It's the right time for us.

-Absolutely.

0:40:150:40:18

It's the right time to do what we're doing.

0:40:180:40:20

So in the last two years, Hazel and Andy have been building up an impressive rental portfolio.

0:40:210:40:27

The plan is to hold on to their houses, letting them out for at least ten years.

0:40:270:40:32

By then, they're hoping the property market will have improved sufficiently

0:40:320:40:36

that they can sell them, releasing enough capital

0:40:360:40:39

for them to retire on comfortably.

0:40:390:40:42

Sounds like a great plan to me.

0:40:420:40:45

But there's some work to do here first.

0:40:450:40:49

So what are you going to do to sort it out?

0:40:490:40:51

Well, Andy is going to... No. We're going to sort out the damp.

0:40:510:40:55

Somebody's lined up for that.

0:40:550:40:57

New kitchen, new... Artex of ceilings, removal of.

0:40:570:41:02

Plaster everywhere. Skim it over.

0:41:020:41:04

New windows - some new windows.

0:41:040:41:06

Radiators, cuddly toy - everything, really, you know.

0:41:060:41:10

New flooring.

0:41:100:41:12

The bathroom, we don't know whether to enlarge that or leave it as it is.

0:41:120:41:17

It's a bit small, so we may break into the single bedroom, we may not.

0:41:170:41:21

-We're still umming and ahing about that.

-Right.

0:41:210:41:24

And what's the budget?

0:41:240:41:26

-Budget. As we think right now, it's about 13 to 15.

-13 to 15, yeah.

0:41:260:41:31

-With you doing how much of the work?

-Almost all of it,

0:41:310:41:35

-except plastering, damp-proofing - the rest of it is us.

-Yeah.

0:41:350:41:40

-And do you work on it together?

-Yeah.

0:41:400:41:42

We tend to go into separate rooms quite often, these days, don't we?

0:41:420:41:46

We have different ideas sometimes, so we will work in separate rooms,

0:41:460:41:50

but generally we work well together.

0:41:500:41:52

What jobs do you both take on or do you share everything?

0:41:520:41:55

-Everything.

-Hazel's a better painter than me.

0:41:550:41:58

That's probably the bit I like the least.

0:41:580:42:01

-I don't think you've ever painted anything.

-I have a bit.

0:42:010:42:04

I do the tiling and the plastering. You do the woodwork, don't you?

0:42:040:42:08

-I do the dirty stuff, I think.

-You get your hands dirty.

-Yeah.

0:42:080:42:13

And any of your expertise from your photography time?

0:42:130:42:17

Well, you know, I try to put something artistic in

0:42:170:42:20

but he stops me - it's all magnolia now.

0:42:200:42:22

Sometimes. You never know what's round the corner.

0:42:220:42:25

I might be able to use my talents sometime.

0:42:250:42:27

So what's the timescale for sorting it?

0:42:270:42:30

About three to four months. We've got this second one to get going as well.

0:42:300:42:34

So about three to four months.

0:42:340:42:36

I look forward to that. And congratulations. Good luck.

0:42:360:42:40

-I look forward to seeing how you get on.

-Thanks very much.

0:42:400:42:43

Well, Hazel and Andy made a big leap,

0:42:440:42:47

giving up their jobs and lives in the south

0:42:470:42:50

and moving north to become property developers

0:42:500:42:53

but it does seem to be going well so far.

0:42:530:42:55

However, taking on two properties at the same time

0:42:550:42:58

is a challenge for anybody.

0:42:580:43:00

How are they going to get on? Find out later in the show.

0:43:000:43:03

Well, doing up a property always seems to take longer than you think.

0:43:060:43:10

There are all sorts of reasons why delays can happen.

0:43:100:43:13

Have they stood still or have they raced ahead?

0:43:130:43:16

Let's go back and find out.

0:43:160:43:17

We go back to Plaistow now,

0:43:190:43:21

where entrepreneur and experienced property developer Sidney purchased

0:43:210:43:24

this two-bedroom mid-terrace at an auction for 175,000.

0:43:240:43:29

But this house had been burnt, quite literally,

0:43:300:43:33

so it was going to take more than a lick of paint to bring it back to life.

0:43:330:43:38

But local lad Sidney wasn't fazed by the fire damage.

0:43:380:43:42

-Did the fire damage not put you off?

-Not really. It was kind of cosmetic.

0:43:420:43:46

No structural damage.

0:43:460:43:48

-So did you get a structural survey before the auction?

-Yes, yes.

0:43:480:43:51

-So you could read through that and you had the safety net of knowing there was nothing wrong with it.

-Yes.

0:43:510:43:56

So he did his homework before the purchase

0:43:560:44:00

but how did he do after? We've come back three months later

0:44:000:44:04

to see if his plans have been brought to life.

0:44:040:44:06

The fire damage was so bad upstairs

0:44:110:44:13

that the only room we could view first time round was the bathroom.

0:44:130:44:17

That has now been turned into an en-suite bedroom.

0:44:170:44:19

The two original bedrooms have been reinstated

0:44:240:44:27

and Sidney even managed to squeeze an additional loo into one of them.

0:44:270:44:32

So the family bathroom must be downstairs - but where?

0:44:320:44:36

What was one large living space has now been split into two,

0:44:360:44:40

creating a dining room and living room,

0:44:400:44:42

which is currently set up as an additional bedroom.

0:44:420:44:46

To the rear of the property and not part of the original plan

0:44:460:44:49

is an extension.

0:44:490:44:51

This allows for the small kitchen to be extended

0:44:510:44:53

and the family bathroom, which leads off it, to be a decent size.

0:44:530:44:57

We have actually had an extension to the back.

0:45:010:45:05

Because this used to be the back wall.

0:45:050:45:07

We have a family bathroom back there.

0:45:070:45:09

And then just changed the layout of the kitchen.

0:45:090:45:12

It used to be like a U-shaped kitchen.

0:45:120:45:14

Now we've put units on either side of it

0:45:140:45:16

and the layout of the kitchen makes it much bigger.

0:45:160:45:20

And I think the extension has added value to the property

0:45:200:45:23

and also made it a lot more lettable.

0:45:230:45:26

So did adding extra space mean more money and more problems?

0:45:290:45:34

The main problem we had with the extension was

0:45:350:45:37

during the groundworks, the foundation bit of it,

0:45:370:45:40

we discovered a lot of the drainage was not what we were expecting.

0:45:400:45:44

So that delayed us a bit and it cost a considerable amount of money more

0:45:440:45:48

than we budgeted for it.

0:45:480:45:50

Sidney aimed to finish in six weeks

0:45:510:45:53

but at 12 weeks, the work's nearly complete,

0:45:530:45:56

apart from some drainage issues that are still being addressed.

0:45:560:46:00

His original budget was 15-20k.

0:46:000:46:03

We ended up spending £34,000.

0:46:030:46:07

About 16,000 of that was the extension.

0:46:070:46:10

And then every other thing came pretty much in to budget.

0:46:100:46:13

It's been three months from start to finish,

0:46:130:46:15

a bit longer than we anticipated

0:46:150:46:17

but you can never plan these things.

0:46:170:46:19

It's good to see a developer this unflappable.

0:46:210:46:24

Presumably he was keeping a close eye on the renovation

0:46:240:46:27

as it was being done.

0:46:270:46:29

I have to be honest, I was away in Japan during most of the project.

0:46:290:46:33

I was away for a month and my builder, sort of...

0:46:330:46:36

We stayed in touch by Skype and phone

0:46:360:46:40

and he sort of did it all when I was away.

0:46:400:46:43

It's great that Sidney was able to leave this place in safe hands while he was away.

0:46:430:46:48

If you plan to do a renovation,

0:46:480:46:50

getting people you trust to do the work is key

0:46:500:46:53

to getting it right with minimal stress.

0:46:530:46:55

With a property like this, you don't need to let the damage put you off,

0:46:550:46:59

particularly if you do as Sidney did and get a structural survey first.

0:46:590:47:04

Right, here we had most of the cosmetic smoke damage.

0:47:040:47:08

The smoke damage did look at lot worse than it was

0:47:080:47:10

because everything was blackened.

0:47:100:47:12

Most of the electrical appliances melted from the heat.

0:47:120:47:15

I'm sure that put a lot of people off at the auction

0:47:150:47:18

but having surveyed it with a surveyor,

0:47:180:47:20

we sort of discovered that it was mainly cosmetic

0:47:200:47:24

and most of the work that had to be done was really the plaster,

0:47:240:47:28

which was old and flaking, so we had to remove the plaster

0:47:280:47:31

and then replaster and reskim and redecorate.

0:47:310:47:34

The benefit of having to rip everything out and start again

0:47:340:47:38

is that this house feels like a brand-new home.

0:47:380:47:41

We asked two local estate agents to cast their expert eyes over it.

0:47:460:47:51

I'm very impressed with what's been done at the property.

0:47:540:47:57

When I came previously, I didn't even go upstairs

0:47:570:48:00

because of the problems that were up there.

0:48:000:48:03

I'm very impressed with the standard that it's been done to

0:48:030:48:06

and how it's turned out with the extension.

0:48:060:48:09

I like the use of the space, especially with the extension.

0:48:090:48:12

It allows you to optimise the bedroom space upstairs.

0:48:120:48:15

I think where they've cut in with the en-suite

0:48:150:48:18

and the WC upstairs, as well,

0:48:180:48:21

takes away the fact that the bathroom is now on the ground floor.

0:48:210:48:25

With Sidney purchasing the property for 175,000

0:48:250:48:29

and spending £34,000 on the work,

0:48:290:48:32

his total outlay is £209,000.

0:48:320:48:35

He already has tenants in and they're paying £1,300 a month.

0:48:350:48:39

Thanks to that extension, this is £200 more than originally agreed

0:48:390:48:44

and gives him a rental yield of around 7.5%.

0:48:440:48:48

However, if he were to consider selling...

0:48:500:48:53

I would put this property on the market for £240,000.

0:48:530:49:00

I would put it on the market for £275,000

0:49:000:49:03

and expect to achieve a figure very close to that.

0:49:030:49:06

Well, I think more the 240,000 mark, yes,

0:49:060:49:10

that's what I had in mind.

0:49:100:49:11

Looking at other properties in the area, I think 240 is reasonable, yes.

0:49:110:49:15

But if I can achieve 275, that's even better.

0:49:150:49:19

With those prices, the property could generate a pre-tax profit

0:49:190:49:23

of between 31,000 and 66,000, minus expenses.

0:49:230:49:26

But with tenants in and Sidney happy with the finished product,

0:49:260:49:30

it doesn't sound like selling is on the horizon.

0:49:300:49:33

No, I don't think this is the right market to sell.

0:49:340:49:37

I'm going to keep hold of it. I'm not a seller, I'm a keeper.

0:49:370:49:41

Now we're returning to Higher Blackley in Greater Manchester.

0:49:440:49:47

Here, property developing husband and wife Hazel and Andy

0:49:470:49:51

purchased this three-bedroom end-of-terrace house at auction for £55,000.

0:49:510:49:57

They claimed that they didn't only have themselves to blame for this.

0:49:570:50:01

-It's all your fault.

-My fault?

-It's watching you every morning, you and Lucy. It's all your fault.

0:50:010:50:07

Sorry about that! So the pressure was on.

0:50:070:50:10

The house needed the damp to be dealt with and some serious redecoration.

0:50:100:50:14

We've come to visit the property-passionate pair

0:50:140:50:16

three months on to see if they've turned this place around.

0:50:160:50:20

Well, it certainly looks like it.

0:50:240:50:26

They've said adios to the Artex, thank goodness,

0:50:260:50:29

and this now looks much more like a modern ideal home from top to bottom.

0:50:290:50:33

The three bedrooms upstairs have all been redecorated in neutral tones

0:50:330:50:38

and the small bathroom looks better with the addition of a new suite.

0:50:380:50:42

Downstairs, both reception rooms have benefited from a much-needed makeover.

0:50:430:50:49

But what about that kitchen?

0:50:490:50:51

It had lots of Artex, so we had to overboard all the walls

0:50:520:50:57

and also the ceiling, and it was all plastered then.

0:50:570:51:00

We also had a major issue with lots of pipework to the boiler

0:51:000:51:03

and we decided to box it in and we boxed in the boiler,

0:51:030:51:07

because that's one of my pet hates, boilers and pipes and things,

0:51:070:51:10

so we got rid of that.

0:51:100:51:12

We then purchased a lovely kitchen

0:51:120:51:14

from a DIY store that was actually closing down.

0:51:140:51:17

So we got a fantastic deal on it.

0:51:170:51:20

We've left a space for a washing machine and a tumble dryer.

0:51:200:51:23

Lots of work surface.

0:51:230:51:25

We had lots of lovely red tiles chosen by Andy.

0:51:250:51:28

Just something to add a bit of a sparkle to the kitchen.

0:51:280:51:31

And here we are, all finished and ready to go.

0:51:310:51:33

And it's certainly a huge improvement.

0:51:350:51:37

Last time we saw it, the garden was messy and overgrown

0:51:370:51:41

but no longer.

0:51:410:51:42

Firstly, we have repainted all the windowsills

0:51:480:51:51

and we've restained the hardwood frames.

0:51:510:51:54

We've repainted all the pipework

0:51:540:51:57

and put up a couple of hanging baskets here.

0:51:570:52:01

We also then went on to jet-wash all of the concrete slab we have here.

0:52:010:52:07

And then over here, we've had four tonne of stones delivered,

0:52:070:52:12

all HIAB-ed in,

0:52:120:52:14

just slice the bottom of the bag and whoosh, it all came zooming out.

0:52:140:52:18

Then we just had to rake it into place.

0:52:180:52:20

And it's perfect for tenants,

0:52:200:52:22

although some people would prefer raking a nice green lawn.

0:52:220:52:26

But the place certainly is looking a lot rosier, both outside and in.

0:52:260:52:30

Hazel and Andy's timescale for completing this project

0:52:300:52:33

was three to four months and they've nearly finished in just three.

0:52:330:52:37

Not surprising, given how much time they've spent here.

0:52:370:52:40

24-7. We might as well have moved in. We were here every day.

0:52:410:52:45

When the builders were first on site,

0:52:450:52:47

we've got another property that we bought a week after this one,

0:52:470:52:50

so we went and started prepping the other property.

0:52:500:52:53

So they were on site for the first three weeks or so, weren't they,

0:52:530:52:57

and then we've been here every day.

0:52:570:52:59

And night and weekend.

0:52:590:53:02

And they weren't the only ones

0:53:020:53:04

who have had a hand in making this place a home.

0:53:040:53:07

The day after you came last time, it was my birthday that weekend,

0:53:070:53:11

so I had a party and it was a stripping party.

0:53:110:53:14

So I got the whole family and friends in with a wallpaper scraper and a steamer

0:53:140:53:18

and let loose, so it was great fun.

0:53:180:53:20

So they came and helped us get it all stripped down,

0:53:200:53:23

stripped out the kitchen and the laminate flooring, so that was good.

0:53:230:53:28

Where was my invite, then?!

0:53:280:53:31

Roping in family and friends can be a great way to save some cash.

0:53:350:53:38

Hazel and Andy's long-term plan is

0:53:380:53:40

to sell the properties they currently rent out in ten years' time to fund their retirement,

0:53:400:53:45

so keeping their eyes on the numbers is vital.

0:53:450:53:48

# You can leave your hat on... #

0:53:480:53:51

Their original budget for the work was between £13-£15,000.

0:53:510:53:56

We've actually come in at nine and a half,

0:53:560:53:59

which is fantastic.

0:53:590:54:01

Plus legals, it will be about £10,500 in total.

0:54:010:54:04

So we're really pleased with that. It's probably one of the best budget ones we've done, really.

0:54:040:54:09

We have a spreadsheet now. As and when we spend stuff, we put that on there.

0:54:090:54:14

We can see which part of the budget it's coming out of,

0:54:140:54:16

which room it was for, all that sort of stuff.

0:54:160:54:19

It just gives you an excellent idea of where you're going.

0:54:190:54:23

Even part-way through the build, you can still see what you're doing.

0:54:230:54:27

With the house looking great and the work done on time and under budget,

0:54:280:54:32

it's time to ask two local property experts for their thoughts.

0:54:320:54:36

I think they've done a fantastic job.

0:54:370:54:39

A massive improvement.

0:54:390:54:41

You know that you're going to move in now without any problems.

0:54:410:54:45

The property is ready to move into.

0:54:450:54:47

It's brand-newly decorated, new carpets, new flooring, new kitchen,

0:54:470:54:51

new bathroom - ready to move into. It's superb.

0:54:510:54:53

Surely that can only mean good news about the potential profit here.

0:54:530:54:59

Many of its neighbours on the market, being two-bedroomed,

0:54:590:55:02

are on the market at around £80,000.

0:55:020:55:05

This one being three-bedroomed, I would expect a little bit more,

0:55:050:55:08

probably £84,000.

0:55:080:55:10

I would put this property on the market for offers over £80,000.

0:55:100:55:14

Hazel and Andy purchased this place for £55,000

0:55:140:55:18

and spent £10,500 on the work and legal fees.

0:55:180:55:21

With that total spend of £65,500,

0:55:210:55:24

they could be looking at a pre-tax profit

0:55:240:55:27

of between £14,500 and £18,500, minus expenses.

0:55:270:55:33

-Yeah.

-Not great but to us it doesn't matter right now.

0:55:330:55:37

We've got a ten-year plan.

0:55:370:55:38

Come back in ten years and we'll tell you if we got 85 or...

0:55:380:55:42

More, hopefully, in ten years' time.

0:55:420:55:44

In keeping with their ten-year plan,

0:55:440:55:47

they want to rent this out and have already lined up a tenant.

0:55:470:55:50

What would the experts suggest they charge?

0:55:520:55:54

A nice big three-bed like this in this area

0:55:540:55:57

will go for £575 per calendar month.

0:55:570:56:00

I would estimate its rental value to be £550 to £570 per calendar month.

0:56:000:56:06

That's good. We were thinking close to that.

0:56:060:56:08

We've just reached just over 10%, which is fantastic.

0:56:080:56:11

We normally would go for 8-10%, so, yeah, it's just right for us.

0:56:110:56:17

And any last words of wisdom for budding property developers?

0:56:170:56:21

I'd advise them to do research, check out property prices

0:56:210:56:25

and rental values, etc.

0:56:250:56:27

It's just buying the right property at the right price in the right location every time.

0:56:270:56:31

And hear-hear to all of that.

0:56:310:56:34

We'll have lots more tales of thrills and spills from the auction rooms for you next time.

0:56:370:56:41

-So make sure you keep watching Homes Under The Hammer.

-See you.

-Goodbye.

0:56:410:56:45

Martin Roberts and Lucy Alexander visit a lock house in Hertford, a house in London and a three-bedroom house in Manchester. All of these properties have been sold at auction; Martin and Lucy find out who bought them, and what they paid when they went under the hammer.