Martin Roberts and Lucy Alexander visit a house in Lincoln, a property in Kent and a semi in Cardiff. They learn what the properties sold for at auction.
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Hello. It's difficult to judge where the property market is these days.
You can't always believe what you read
and what you hear.
No, so what you need to do is see for yourself
and one way to do that is by going to your local auction.
A huge range of properties sell under the hammer,
so, why not go to your local auction room and see what's for sale.
You might be pleasantly surprised by the prices of things,
you may even be able to bag yourself a bargain.
So, here's what got our buyers excited on today's show.
not all the rooms in this Lincoln house are the same size.
It's the kitchen, it's absolutely tiny,
you've only got room for your sink.
This Kent property would be much improved if you moved the kitchen.
I think it would look fantastic, you've just got to work it out
and see if the maths work.
And this Cardiff semi has one long lounge and two bedrooms.
Third bedroom, there. But then, a bit of a surprise.
'All these properties went to auction and we'll find out who bought them
'and what they paid when they went under the hammer.'
This is the cathedral city of Lincoln,
the largest city in historic Lincolnshire.
In the 12th century Lincoln was one of the wealthiest
places in the country.
Exporting wool and cloth all over Europe.
In fact, Robin Hood wore Lincoln green cloth.
Well, nowadays it is a major tourist destination
with people coming to see the Cathedral
and other beautiful, historic buildings.
Locals divide Lincoln into uphill and downhill.
The Cathedral Quarter is uphill
and was, historically, the most affluent part of the city.
Houses in this area still fetch a premium
and that is where I'm headed.
Well, just a short walk from the city centre
is a property that I'm here to see.
£115,000 was the guide price for this beautiful,
double fronted Victorian house, three bedrooms.
I can see straight away that it's on a fairly busy road
and there's double yellow lines right outside so, no parking.
Let's see what it's like inside.
One good thing - the property still has its original sash windows.
It would be great to restore those,
but double glazed replacements might be better
because of noise from the road.
So, through the front door
and nice to be greeted by that, a beautiful tiled hallway.
Fingers crossed there'll be more original features
and lovely things like that.
On this side we've got ourselves a reception room.
Open fire, open that up and make a real feature, there.
You've got the bay window...
Floorboards would be beautiful stripped back, as well,
as would the doors.
That looks like a bit of a...
A bit of a... Oh, golly.
A bit of damp, then.
Need to have that sorted out.
Let's hope that wood rot ends in that naughty corner,
or it could take a lot of time out of your schedule to fix.
There's another large reception room across the hall,
it also needs complete redecoration,
but I am impressed by the amount of space here.
Well, towards the rear of the property
you've got an interesting space under the stairs,
which has been converted into a pantry and store area.
Then, through to the third reception room, here,
again a fireplace, which is good.
But, then, what was going on here?
Look at it, it's the kitchen.
It's absolutely tiny, you've only got room for your sink
and very little else.
So, the obvious solution is to have this as a utility room
and make this into the kitchen of the property.
You've got lots of light coming in through this window,
it would really make a big difference.
You could take out some walls, but that might be a bit complicated.
Simple thing, make this the kitchen
have that as the utility room, job done.
So, plenty of scope for improvement here,
in this house that went to auction, guided at £115,000.
At the back there is a decent sized walled yard,
and the condition of the building doesn't look too bad at all.
Upstairs, there are three bedrooms.
And a bathroom, ah, all showing their age.
Well, don't underestimate the amount of work that's needed
to sort this place out.
It doesn't have any central heating, I'm sure the electrics need replacing,
damp proof course, general refurbishment inside,
new kitchen, new bathroom. It's a major restoration job.
That lot doesn't faze me too much,
but what does concern me is this,
which I just found at the front of the property.
A very, very large crack.
On its own, would it worry me? Well, yes, kind of.
But it worries me even more
when there's a, not quite the same but almost,
similar crack on the other side.
My concern is that the front of the building is, possibly,
separating from the rest of the house.
Now, that, dear viewer, is quite serious.
The good news is that there aren't any matching cracks
on the exterior walls.
I'd advise getting a surveyor to check out the building's structure.
What does a local estate agent think of this property?
There are definitely pros and cons with this one.
It's got a lot of scope, it's got some lovely, old features,
it's got the tessellated tile flooring,
the original fireplaces, original sash windows in the bays.
People love a bit of character, so definitely keep them,
don't go bulldozing.
Once renovated, how much rent could the house generate?
I think if we were renting the property out,
you could ask somewhere between £650 and £700 per calendar month.
What if it was sold?
I think for sale value,
obviously, it's going to be when it comes to the market
and how the market is in that situation,
but I would imagine it would be around the £200,000 mark.
Well, there is a lot to like about this house.
I love the period features,
I love the location, so close to Lincoln city centre.
And, in general, a bit of effort spent here,
sorting and the damp and other issues,
you'd have yourself a great property.
Let's see who agreed when it went under the hammer.
A three bedroomed, double fronted, Victorian, end of terrace property
in need of modernisation and refurbishment.
£100,000 to make a start, here.
On my left, at £100,000.
At 102, 102?
104, 106, 108, 110, 112, 114.
116, 117, 118. 118.
119, 120, 121.
£121,000, are you sure? You've reached your limit.
122, against you, madam. £122,000
at 122,000... 123.
Are you sure, sir?
At 123, still in the middle of the room, all the way.
at £123,000, once,
the third and final time of asking, at £123,000, are we all done?
Thank you, Madam, well done.
That final, successful bid of £123,000 was bid by Sue.
She's a nurse and was at the auction with her partner Rob,
who is a property developer and builder.
But it was Sue and her brick layer stepson, Jason,
and pet dog, Polly, who I met at the house.
Sue, Jason, lovely to meet you both.
Got yourself a lovely house, tell me why you wanted to buy it.
I've been wanting to have a renovation project for some time,
and I saw this property up for auction,
and came to have a look around it and fell in love with it, really.
Jason, what's your involvement in this?
I'm going to be doing most of the manual work around the place,
like stripping walls and redoing the room over there.
What do you think of the house?
I think it's great.
It certainly is a great end of terrace house.
Jason's dad, Rob, will also work on the renovation.
He's a builder and a renovator,
and has been for a lot of years, so, he's an expert, really.
So, he's going to be running the project,
and I will be project managing alongside him.
As it's something that's quite new for me,
-then I intend to learn from him, really.
And, of course, Jason will be doing a lot of the work.
Yes, done a college course in bricklaying.
I've done a lot of renovations already, like three or four.
Um, mainly on new builds, but I've done a few like this before.
It's ideal that Sue can learn about property developing
from people she knows and trusts.
Rob's experience tells him those cracks are likely to be superficial,
and easily fixed.
As for Sue's own work as a nurse,
she's in a good position, time wise, to do this project,
as she went part-time 18 months ago.
Sue's done up and extended her own homes in the past.
But this house is a much bigger project than any she's handled before.
Luckily, Sue's partner Rob has years of building experience,
and a whole team of skilled workmen will help on-site.
So, what's the idea for it then?
Is it buy it, do it up and sell it? Or are you going to keep it and rent it?
We're going to do it up,
and have it looking really nice as a family home.
Then we intend to sell it.
Hopefully, I'll make a profit on it and then put that towards another project.
Talk me through, Jason, what you are going to do to help sort it out?
-What you think needs to be done?
-I think it all needs re-skimming.
All the electrics and plumbing needs to go through again.
Doors and windows all get re-changed. UPVC put in.
And just bring it up to standard.
There's three reception rooms. So, one of the reception rooms, I want to turn that into the kitchen,
because the kitchen as it is now is very tiny.
What I also intend to do is, the adjacent reception room,
I'd like to turn that into a dining room, and incorporate the two,
as kitchen-dining rooms do tend to be the fashion.
-We're not quite sure how to do that. But we're working on that one, aren't we, Jason?
Sue's hoping to put a downstairs toilet and shower room
at the end of the utility room in the old outbuildings.
I'm delighted that she hopes to keep as many of the period features as possible.
How much money have you got set aside to do the work?
We're hoping £20,000-£25,000 will cover the costs.
-And we want to perhaps try and get this finished in three months.
-How's it going to work financially? Are you going to be paid for doing it?
-Yes, I believe so!
-Yes, he will.
-I hope so!
-Congratulations, good luck with it, we look forward to seeing how you get on.
-Thank you very much.
Well, it's great that Sue has got the opportunity to realise her dream of becoming a property developer.
And equally good that she's got Jason and partner, Rob, to help her.
However, it's not always that easy.
And I'm sure there will be challenges to face.
Not least, selling the property once it's done.
How will she get on? We can find out later in the show.
I'm in Sevenoaks in Kent today where novelist Jane Austen had close family links.
Her relatives owned a house in the town where Jane was known to have stayed,
and some say much of her inspiration came from Kent.
Today's auction lot definitely isn't fictitious,
and I know for a fact it is a best seller.
But even though it's second-hand, I'm afraid I can't promise discounted prices.
Here's hoping it's prize-worthy.
'OK, enough literary wordplay.
'But Sevenoaks certainly has heritage, and is also a bit of a commuter hotspot,
'due to its excellent transport connections into London.'
Although the property's postal address is Sevenoaks,
it's actually eight miles from the town, in a pretty village called St Mary's Platt.
Now, it's a popular alternative to central Sevenoaks
because property is much cheaper.
A four-bedroom house in Sevenoaks could command as much as £550,000.
The same property here had a guide of just £225,000-£245,000.
With off-street parking and its own garage, things look promising so far.
'A mock Tudor frontage isn't for everyone,
'but I've got faith in the potential here, given its general conditions so far.'
This house was built in the '80s.
About that time, I was wearing leggings, had big hair
and was kissing George Michael posters. But enough of that!
You can really see the old-fashioned styles of this property.
Lots of thin walls. And the kitchen is a real disappointment.
You'd expect something a lot bigger for a house like this.
But it does have a big, open feel. You've got a reception room there.
A nice-sized toilet.
And this wonderful space. You've got loads of light coming in.
You can see it does need a makeover. There's a couple of options here.
You could come in, and you could tosh it up,
spend around £10,000, making good of what you see.
Because, as auction properties go, it's not that bad.
Or, you could go crazy like I would,
and think about ripping the kitchen out of there,
and turning the whole layout around, and having your kitchen area at the back here.
You could even then think about taking some of this wall out,
having big lovely bi-fold doors there so you can really get a full whacking view of that garden.
You've got to think how much that's going to cost relocating pipes,
putting all of that, installing drainage and everything in this room.
I think it would look fantastic,
you've just got to work it out and see if the maths work.
# You bet! If you're gonna do it, Do it right! Right?
# Do it with me. #
'If money was no object or this was going to be a forever home,
'going to town on the layout could be a real hit.'
'But you'd have to dig deep into the pockets of those stonewashed jeans!'
At least with this property, you haven't got to worry about any structural work or extensions.
In fact, up here, it's pretty good to go.
You've got four decent-sized bedrooms, a nice family bathroom.
And you have got a really good space in there, which is the master room, with an en suite.
So, looking good so far.
All I'd do is, perhaps, get into the groove
and change this '80s decor.
# Get into the groove, boy
# You've got to prove Your love to me. Yeah. #
'I'd definitely think about ripping out that bathroom.
'And I'd probably replace the en suite while I was at it.
'Outside, the garden may be a bit on the steep side.
'But that patio would be great for chilling out of an evening.'
So, the garden comes with its awkwardness.
There's the slope, and there's certainly not enough room to kick a football there.
But don't get too down about it.
Because look, there's plenty of room here!
And it's right on your doorstep! Fantastic.
-Always believe in your soul. #
'I think we might have struck gold with that communal playing field, and this lovely property.
'The auction guide price was £225,000-£245,000.
'We asked a local estate agent for his thoughts on the place.'
It's a great house, being detached, four bedrooms.
Obviously, there's work to do.
But that means it's a blank canvas for the owners,
and they can make it more modern.
'Is this a good rental proposition?'
The amount it would be rented out per calendar month would be about £1,500.
'What about the resale market?'
When renovated, I would want to put it on the market at £399,950.
You've got two options here.
You could spend as little as possible, and leave the layout as it is.
Or you could go all out, completely change the space,
spend some dosh, and make it into a home that you really want to live in.
I wonder what the new owner will do?
Let's see who took the plunge, as we go to auction.
And now we go to Platt near Sevenoaks.
It's a modern detached house for improvement.
It's here to be sold. 225, can I say?
Give me 200 then and you wouldn't be wasting your time.
200 I have. 210 if you wish? 210.
At 210? 220. 230. 230?
230. 235 I'll take if you like. 235.
240. 245, sir?
245 on the wall? Because I took the other ones first.
But if not, 245 anywhere else?
245 in the middle. And 250 now, do I see?
250 do I see? 250 at the back. 255 I'm looking for. 255.
260 if you wish? 260. And five.
265. And 70?
270. And five?
Are we all done at 270? 275.
And 80? 280.
At £275,000 then. By the door on my left I have.
280 I'm bid. 285 it's now against you.
285 do I see? 285 I've got. 290.
290? 290. And five?
295? At £290,000 I have.
Five I'm looking for. For the first time.
£290,000 bid, if you're all finished for the second time.
Third and final time. Are we all done at £290,000?
To the lady sitting down. All done?
290, what a lovely smile.
'No wonder she's smiling.
'Medical student Clara attended the auction with her counsellor mum Anne
'and she's just spent £290,000 of her mum's money.'
# Here come the girls!
# Girls! Girls! Girls, girls! #
'I caught up with them back at the house, and the good news is that they're still smiling.'
Girls, congratulations. I'm so excited to hear the story
and why you wanted to buy this. Anne?
Well, I hadn't planned to buy this at all.
I am one of those people who had no intention of coming here,
no intention of buying this house, no, didn't look at it before I came.
One of those... We drove up literally the night before.
Looked outside. And I thought, this looks OK, let's go to the auction and see what happens.
Clara, were you with your mum? And did she just do this on the spur of the moment?
Yeah, she's one of those sorts of people. We did literally just drive outside.
We went to the auction. About five minutes before the lot came up, she went,
"Oh, my gosh, I'm too scared to do it, you bid, you bid!"
So I was pushed into doing it. But it was good fun.
Anne, tell me about yourself, what do you do day-to-day?
I run a children's counselling service across West Kent,
which is severely under threat at the moment.
So I guess one of my thoughts with this is I need another string to my bow.
This is a bow that interests me,
so I'm waiting to see, really, whether this might become a full-time occupation
or whether I need to think about something else as well.
'If she is going to make a career of it,
'Anne might be wise to get into the habit of viewing properties before buying them at auction!'
'But this time, it looks like she's lucked out.'
It was 100% better than I thought. I was in the car, and I thought,
"Oh, my God, this is going to be a tip, what have I done?"
I was very, very favourably impressed. I thought, "Wow, this is fine.!
What about the price you paid at auction?
Well, we did go over, probably...
I set a price, I'm not so stupid.
I did look at six o'clock in the morning at what the other values were.
I set a price. I said we're not going to go over 280.
-We get to 280 and I think, we're just going to go up a bit more.
-She went, keep going up, keep going up!
They ended up spending £290,000 on the property.
45 grand over the upper guide price.
Anne has a budget of between £10,000 and £15,000, so what's the plan?
Change the bathrooms, change the kitchen,
change the obvious things. Paint it. But I think the layout downstairs worries me.
So I think there needs to be some changes downstairs.
And what will be different about that is, you know, can I afford to do that sensibly?
Is this going to be a joint effort for you two, mother and daughter?
Is it going to be putting your gorgeous heads together and working some magic on this property?
-Sounds about right.
-Sounds about right.
Clara, tell me what your involvement is going to be?
I've got a massive summer off from university.
I have no money. And Mum said,
"If you sit in the house and sort out the painting and decorating, I'll help you out with some money."
-So it works for both of us.
-Would you like to call yourself a project manager?
-I'd like to call myself a project manager. Why not?
-Initially, that's what it'll be.
It's going to be dealing with a lot of... It doesn't need a lot of structural work, we don't think.
So hopefully, it will just be dealing with decorating, and refitting, things like that.
'Clara will be living on site during her university holidays.
'They hope to turn the property around in four months and live there
'before deciding what to do with it.
'I just hope Clara can resist the temptation
'to have those '80s-style parties before work commences.'
# Everybody cut footloose! #
Clara, will you just be project managing and overseeing,
or do you think there's any chance, Anne, that she might get stuck in and do some work?
It'll be a good experience. There's nothing like getting your hands dirty
-to understand how much it actually takes to do something.
-I will be definitely getting my hands dirty,
I can't wait to get the paint out and start getting the walls looking good.
Girls, good luck with this project. Clara, I hope you do well in your role.
And Anne, next time, maybe a little bit more research might pay off. But well done.
And I can't wait to see how it turns out.
I think it's great to be spontaneous.
But spontaneous house-buying?
Anne is a brave lady.
Luckily for her, this looks like it's a good buy
and with focused Clara on hand to help, well,
I'm sure she'll turn this place around in four months.
But will she do the work for just £10,000?
And will they relocate that kitchen? I hope so.
You can find out what happens later on in the programme.
'Coming up, this semi in Cardiff is very long and narrow.'
And it goes on and on, and on!
'We're returning to Kent, where decorating this house has been a breath of fresh air.'
The first day I thought, "This is going to be a breeze, painting every day."
'But first, in Lincolnshire,
'has it all gone smoothly for Sue and Jason?'
-It's been good, hasn't it?
-Yeah. We've enjoyed it.
'We return now to Lincoln, where, earlier in the programme, Sue had bought
'this imposing double-fronted property for £123,000.'
'It had some damp, and a very nasty crack.'
'Sue's a part-time nurse,
'and her stepson Jason was going to do the work with his dad and Sue's partner, Rob.'
He's a builder and renovator, and has been for a lot of years.
So he's an expert. So he's going to be running the project.
And I'll be project managing alongside him.
-And of course, Jason will be doing a lot of the work.
-Yeah. I've done my college course in bricklaying.
I've done a lot of renovations already, done three or four.
'Sue had set a three-month timescale,
'and was going to sell the house once the refurbishment was finished.
'Three and a half months had passed when we met up with Sue and Jason again.
'And the Victorian house is finished.
'Replacement double glazed sash windows have been installed, and a new door.
'The left-hand living room, as you look from the street,
'has retained the fireplace, and been tastefully decorated.'
'The wall to the living room on the other side of the hall has been opened up.
'The dry rot in the corner has been repaired.
'Plus, there's an opening in the wall that lets you see
'into the room behind, which is now an impressive kitchen.'
In here, it was a reception room,
but now we've made this into a kitchen. The original kitchen was really small.
We've opened out this area, so the kitchen now flows through into the dining room
which is nice - when people are in the dining room,
they can interact with people in the kitchen.
We've had a bespoke kitchen built.
That's so that we can make use of all the space that we've got.
I chose this colour because it works well with the cream of the cupboards
and it makes it quite a warm room as well.
'The former pantry next to the stairs has had the wall removed.
'A new window's been installed and it's now valuable extra storage space.
'Sue's partner Rob project managed the refurbishment,
'and his son Jason did a lot of the work.'
I helped wallpaper strip from start to finish.
I did a lot of the breaking down of the walls,
and bricking them up. Put all the lintels in.
In the previous kitchen, we knocked through into the sheds, and converted that into a downstairs toilet.
'The tiny original kitchen is now a utility room.
'The courtyard garden has been turfed, and the wall painted.
'Upstairs, the new windows and radiators policy continues in the back bedroom.
'And a very classy bathroom's been installed.'
# Crack me up! #
'And there was good news about the crack in the front bedroom.
'Sue's partner Rob checked it out and deemed it structurally sound.
'It was wired up so that it wouldn't get any worse.'
And in here is the master bedroom.
I've painted it pink and a purpley colour because it gives the room a really warm feel
and I'm really pleased with how it's turned out.
As well as the downstairs one, this is the second original fireplace.
The surrounding was originally pink,
but now I've painted that white, so it really stands out from the wall.
And then, just here, we've had an en suite built,
so I'm pleased with that.
Jason had help from qualified tradesmen for the plumbing, rewiring
and plastering, and picked up some useful tips himself, as well.
This was a good learning curve.
I learned a lot more than I did in my previous working places.
There's always something new on renovations,
compared to new-builds. It's just things you have to overcome.
Sometimes you have to think outside the box,
or should that be the paint can, in this case?
The red tiles in the living room fireplace had been chipped,
but Sue discovered her nail polish was a perfect match.
So, has she managed to keep to her budget?
I spent £123,000 at auction.
I was thinking £25,000-£30,000, and it's come nearer to the £30,000,
but that includes the solicitors' fees, so I'm happy with that.
Sue plans to sell the house and has dressed it with plants and pictures
to help create a homely feel that she hopes will attract a buyer.
Her 30 grand budget, added to the purchase price at auction,
means she has spent a total of £153,000 here.
Time to see what two local estate agents think of the place.
My first impression of the property is, it's a superb home,
a job very well done, excellent renovation and a prime location.
It wasn't what I was expecting at all.
I think they've managed to transform
a simple Victorian bay-fronted house
into something quite striking and contemporary.
I particularly like what might have been termed as the "service hatch"
from the kitchen to the dining room,
where they've just squared it off and opened it up,
and allowed lots of light into the room.
The only disadvantage of this property would be
the lack of off-road parking.
But I wouldn't expect that to affect the saleability.
Good news for Sue, but what about the rental opportunity,
if she changed her mind or found it hard to sell?
I would imagine that this property would rent
for somewhere in the region of £675-£700 per calendar month.
In my opinion, the property would achieve
somewhere in the region of £700-£750 per calendar month.
-That's good, I'm pleased with that.
-Yeah. That's good.
I haven't gone into it, particularly,
because we're going to be selling it.
Those valuations would give Sue a yield of between 5% and 6%,
but what could it make in that all-important resale market,
bearing in mind her total outlay of £153,000?
I would value this property in the region of £190,000.
My valuation for this property would be
between £180,000-£190,000 on the open market.
Based on those valuations, of between 180-190 grand,
Sue could make a gross profit of between 27,000-37,000.
Right, I've thought a little bit more than that.
I was thinking more around the 200.
Well, we'll see.
Well, maybe not quite the valuations she'd hoped for.
After three months work, does Jason think the project's been worthwhile?
Yeah, I think it's been a success, a huge success, from start to finish.
I think it's been a success as well. I really enjoyed the experience.
-I would do it again. It's been good, hasn't it?
Yeah, we've enjoyed it.
Well, I'm just a few miles from the centre of Cardiff
in an area called Kingcoed.
Now, this is one of the most affluent suburbs and, in fact,
property prices here are some of the highest in Wales,
so, it won't be any surprise to discover
that houses here often sell for over a million quid.
The area saw lots of development in the early 20th century,
when Cardiff was expanding rapidly.
They certainly went to town on some of the properties around here.
# Remember anyone can be a millionaire... #
The property I'm here to see is at the other end of Millionaires' Row,
and came with the not quite so hefty guide price of £229,000.
So, what did that get you for your money? Well, basically, this.
It's a four bed semi-detached. Looks a little bit tired on the outside.
Let's see what it's like inside.
It's an imposing house with a big front garden,
but rotten woodwork, and the front elevation needs a paint job.
I'm not sure it's much of a bargain just yet,
but this one is all about its location.
I've got Great Expectations. Would it be a Dickens of a mess, though?
Let's find out.
Love the parquet floor, and there's a nice entrance area here.
Stairs up to your bedrooms.
Front sitting room, again, that parquet floor continues
and cleaned up, that would be absolutely beautiful.
You've got a rear sitting room.
And this is where it gets really interesting.
Because we come into the kitchen. And it goes on and on and on.
Look at this! It's massive! It's not an ideal layout.
This wall here, it's too narrow to put a set of cupboards here,
so you'd probably end up putting a small table here, and then
it would be in the wrong place for a sink. So, in a nutshell,
the layout doesn't work,
but in terms of space to play with, fantastic.
It needs a complete refit and there is a leaking roof to investigate,
but it's a whopping long kitchen,
and if you knocked through to the equally long rear sitting-room,
you would have a ginormous area to work with,
which could open out onto the garden.
But I think I'd keep the front living room separate.
It's got great ceiling height and that lovely bay window.
So, what's on offer on the first floor of this house that was guided at £229,000?
So, upstairs, some nice original features, like those stained-glass windows.
Be nice to keep those, although something tells me they'd go in any refurbishment.
Bathroom there, reasonable size - it's got a shower
and a bath, but very dated.
You could have some fun with that, though. Bedroom at the back.
Second bedroom there. Third bedroom there, but then, there's a surprise.
Because a set of stairs takes you up to a dormer.
I got very excited that that concept. Absolutely fantastic.
And then you actually come up here and you think,
what on earth was whoever built this thinking?
Because you've got a dormer on the rear and the front of the property.
That - I'm amazed it's got planning permission, because
normally, they're sensitive about dormers on the front when there's very few in the road.
The natural place for a dormer, for me, would be next door, so you could have one there.
Then, they've got this cupboard in the middle, so where would you put a bed?
As a space, it just doesn't work.
So, I think, what you're going to have to do, if you want to use this
as a proper room, get rid of those two dormers,
get a dormer in there, maybe change the staircase location
and then you really have got what could be a spectacular room.
# So tell me if, you want to see A world outside your window #
This property, guided at £229,000,
was described as a four-bedroomed house,
but I'm going to reclassify it as a three-bed with a loft room.
From the back garden, you can see the neighbouring properties
have got side and rear dormer windows, so that's the way to go.
But what does a local estate agent think about the house,
situated at the cheaper end of this expensive road?
When I entered the kitchen, although it's very long, I did note that,
at the far end, the wall is single brick and dry-lined,
so that's going to be a cold kitchen, so something needs to be done to bring it into the cavity.
So, a warning about the ground floor.
But what about that loft extension?
It looks as though most of the building regulations
could have been complied with in regard to the risers for the staircase, head height,
and this has to be confirmed by the planning department,
or a structural engineer, chartered surveyor to check and measure,
basically, what's here.
Once the property's been renovated
and kept as a four-bedroomed house, how much could it be worth, if sold?
Assuming that it is going to be a fourth bedroom,
the value range here would be in the region of £325,000.
What's the potential rental income here,
as a three-bedroomed or four-bedroomed property?
If this property was a three-bedroomed property,
it would be in the region of £900 per calendar month.
If it was classified as a fourth bedroom,
then possibly £1,000 per calendar month,
but there would be a proviso that
an en suite, shower room, facilities, should be considered for the attic.
Well, what you've got here is a house that's not without its problems.
That dormer, the extension on the back, the general layout,
but all those things, you can forget about them,
because, really, what you're buying here is the location,
and you can't fault that.
I'm sure it was a very popular lot at the auction.
Number 26, this has been a popular lot, two reception rooms,
kitchen-diner, shout me a bid.
Looking for 235. 230? 225, 225 to get things moving.
OK, 225 is bid here, 225. 226, standing at the back, thank you.
227, thank you, 227. 228, thank you, at the back. 228? 229.
230, thank you, standing.
232, thank you, yes, that's you.
233, thank you.
Can I take 234 off you? 234.
235, thank you. 235 is bid.
236, thank you. 236. 237.
238. I'm looking for 239,000.
239 will you give me half? 238.5 is bid.
Thank you, 239. Any advance on 239?
I will be selling at 239,000, if there's no increase.
It's on you, sir, at 239. Any advance on 239? Be quick. Thank you.
That final successful bid of £239,000 was made by Jeff.
He's one of eight brothers,
two of whom he's in a property developing partnership with.
Together, the company owns around 120 buy-to-lets.
His brother, Terry, who I'm meeting at this purchase,
has been on the show before, when he and his brothers bought
another Cardiff property for their buy-to-let portfolio.
Time to find out what Terry and his brothers have in mind for this one.
Terry, good to see you again. How are you?
Yeah, fine, thank you very much.
So, how's the property we saw you in last time?
Um, it's been occupied two or three days afterwards
and we've never been back since.
The tenants have still got it.
So, moving on to this property, why did you want to buy it?
Well, you wouldn't very often get a property like this,
in an auction, in this type of area.
Normally, they are on the market and sold within weeks of coming on the market.
So, why do you think it maybe didn't sell for more?
Couple of reasons. First, the dormer.
There would be plans for that, but it hasn't got any building regs,
and possibly, the extension here, this wouldn't pass the building regs.
So perhaps they decided just to chuck it in auction. And just get it sold.
All these reasons mean that the place was unlikely
to be mortgageable, but, as Terry was able to purchase it
with capital from his company, this put him in a strong position.
With only cash buyers bidding, the limited number of bidders kept the price low.
But now Terry's got a job on his hands.
OK, so, tell me exactly what you're going to do to sort it out.
Start with the kitchen. We're going to take the wall out, have one large kitchen.
Patio doors across the back.
We're going to leave the one front room as it is, and just have one
large room here, obviously revamp it all, new kitchen, new windows.
We'll just do the whole work downstairs, yeah.
And then, moving upstairs?
Initial thoughts are, three large bedrooms.
We'll take the dormer out and put it to the side
and put a new staircase up the side of the wall to the dormer,
and make that into one large bedroom with a shower room.
Three bedrooms downstairs we will make into two large bedrooms with one en suite.
So, how much does he think it'll cost to do the refurbishment here?
The overall budget, in between 30,000-40,000.
Including the dormer?
That's the dormer, the kitchen, everything.
Is that bringing in your own builders?
Yes, they are our own builders.
If you were to contract the work out,
you could add another 30-40% on top of that budget.
Timescale for sorting it?
We wouldn't be able to start for about 3-4 weeks,
and, after that, I would say about 12 weeks.
So what's the big picture with this place? Doing it up to sell it or rent it out?
This one, we're going to put it straight back on the market, to sell.
What did you think of it when you first saw it?
-The first time I saw it was this morning.
I came in this morning.
My brother, Jeff, went to the auction to purchase the property.
I picked up the keys off him last night,
and I came in this morning and I was pleasantly surprised.
-So, had anyone seen it before you bought it?
We found out three or four days before it was on the market,
and he just went to the auction.
We didn't think we had any chance of buying it.
We thought it was going to make around the 280-290,
and of course, when it came down at 239, we were quite excited about that.
I know you're experienced at this kind of thing,
but still, spending almost a quarter of a million,
without seeing the place?
Yes, we have to stop doing that.
We must start to view them before the auction!
Congratulations. Maybe we'll see you again in another couple of years.
-Good luck in the meantime.
-Thank you very much.
Well, it seems Terry has done really well buying this place,
but as he admits, he really should start looking at places before
he buys them, because one of these days, he might just come a cropper.
In the meantime, he's got a team of people to sort it out
and I think there's a lot of money to be made on this one.
You can find out how he gets on later in the show.
Well, the seasons have changed.
Hopefully, the properties have changed, as well.
Or have they remained exactly the same? It's the moment of truth.
Back now to St Mary's Platt, near Sevenoaks in Kent,
where mother and daughter team Anne and Clara bought
this four-bedroom house for 290,000.
-# Here come the girls
-# Girls, girls, girls, girls #
Their plan was to drag the house kicking and screaming out of the '80s
and back up to date.
It was to be a joint effort.
Clara, will you just be project managing and overseeing,
or is there any chance that she might get stuck in and do some work?
There's nothing like getting your hands dirty to understand
how much it actually takes to do something.
I will be definitely getting my hands dirty in this one.
I can't wait to get the paint out and start getting the walls looking good again.
They gave themselves a budget of between 10,000-15,000,
and four months to do the work.
Four and a half months after our first visit,
we're back to see how the girls got on.
# And we can build this thing together
# Standing strong for ever
# Nothing's going to stop us, nothing's going to stop us now
# Oh-oh #
And they have definitely done well.
Downstairs, the 1980s boxiness has been ditched
in favour of a much more contemporary layout.
Well, when we came here, there was a door here,
and there was a door behind me,
and it felt really overbearing and crowded in, so what we've done is,
we've taken this wall back and we've taken this wall back.
We've created a door here, in order to give some sort of privacy,
and we've just taken this out and left the kitchen,
so there's a sort of sense of open- plan-ness, but with discrete areas.
And it just moves you into here,
where it's a lovely, big, bright room and there's lots of space,
so I don't think it feels too crowded now.
There's no way you could call this house crowded any more.
Anne and Clara have really pushed the boat out
and given the whole place a total makeover.
MUSIC: "Weather With You" by Crowded House
The thing we really wanted to do here was to give the house
some personality, so we decided to clad the outside
and change the front door, change the kitchen, change the bathrooms,
redecorate, re-landscape the garden.
What about the plan for Clara to muck in and get her hands dirty?
# Claire, Claire, you're so fine #
Originally, we talked about a kind of project managerial job,
but Mum was very, very tight about the budget,
which is kind of understandable,
and so although I helped source some of the work,
mainly, my role was decorating
and quite a lot of manual labour.
But it was quite hard. Like, the first day, I thought,
this is going to be a breeze, painting every day,
but three and a half weeks in, your shoulders are hurting,
your neck hurts.
You can't bear to lift another rubble sack
around the side of the house, but it was good. I really enjoyed it.
I felt I was working and accomplishing something,
rather than working in an office, pushing a pen around a desk.
It was, yeah, I found it really rewarding.
And it turns out that student, Clara, has further hidden talents.
She's fantastic at sourcing some wonderful trades.
Wonderful guy for the garden, we loved him.
One of her flatmates from uni.
He definitely has missed his calling in life!
# Everywhere you go, always take the weather, the weather with you. #
The garden, like the house, now feels much more spacious.
It's a real credit to them.
They kept to their tight four-month timescale,
but what about their £10,000-£15,000 budget?
Bang on the money, 15.
The decision to take the walls down really exercised me,
because I knew that it could involve all sorts of extra expenditure,
the minute you start messing around with taking things down.
I think it was the right thing to do.
Certainly the right thing to do in terms of living.
Whether it was the right thing to do in terms of margin, will be revealed.
And, as if by magic, here are two local estate agents
to tell us if they think it was money well spent.
15 grand for the renovation,
on top of the purchase price of 290,000
makes a total outlay of £305,000. So, what are their thoughts?
Very impressed with the property.
I believe that the opening up of the kitchen
and dining room have transformed that living area.
What they've done to the property, I think is good,
it's to a fair standard, and I like the idea
that they've opened up the downstairs.
So, what did they think the property could fetch as a rental?
I would put it up for between 1,200-1,400 per calendar month.
If I was to put it up for rent,
I'd put it up at £1,800 per calendar month.
I'm very surprised at 1,800, to be honest,
but I don't really know what rental values are round here.
I'd be very happy with the lower figure,
so I'd be extremely happy with the upper figure.
There's a potential yield year of between 4%-7%,
but Anne hopes to sell the house in the not-too-distant future.
So, what's it worth on the resale market?
Remember, Anne spent 305,000 altogether.
If I was to put the property up for sale,
I'd probably put it on between £355,000 to £365,000.
If I was to market the property, I'd put it on at just under £400,000.
I'd be a very happy girl at 335,
and I'd be an extremely happy girl at 400.
Done a really good deal if we get it for 400.
I'd be very surprised to see it at that.
So Anne could make a profit of between 50 and 95,000 before tax
and expenses, but for now, Anne and Clara are living here, so what's
the joint project done for their mother-daughter relationship?
There were evenings where we used to sit down
and drink wine out of mugs, like students,
and think, "This is working really well", and then
times we'd scream, "We could never do this again",
but I think, in hindsight, it did work really well, and probably,
we could do it again together, maybe.
We go back to Cardiff now, where earlier in the show,
just a short walk down an exclusive road where properties
sell for over £1 million, this semi was bought for 239,000 at auction.
It was sold to Terry and two of his brothers, who jointly own
a successful property developing company, with over 120 buy-to-lets.
The house had a very long living room and kitchen.
There were three bedrooms upstairs...
..plus an attic conversion,
that Terry suspected didn't have building regs,
but he had big plans for the room.
We'll take the dormer out and put it to the side,
and make that into one large bedroom with a shower room.
Three bedrooms downstairs, we'll make into two large bedrooms with one en suite.
Well, it's now five months later,
and the dormer's still at the front,
but it's got a new window,
just like the rest of the house.
The front living room has lost the picture rail
and the parquet floor has been sanded and waxed.
That narrow room at the back has been divided into two living areas,
one carpeted, and at the back, a fabulous dining area's been created
as the wall to the kitchen has been removed.
And the long kitchen has been transformed,
with high quality appliances fitted.
The kitchen area, we took this wall out, here,
made it more open plan,
and we then fitted the folding doors
that goes out onto the patio, there,
and we've obviously fitted a very expensive kitchen, as you can see.
The former kitchen extension was demolished
and Terry's team have extended right across the back,
so you can now step out onto the decking.
Upstairs, the three bedrooms remain. Like the rest of the house,
they have new wiring and windows.
The layout in the bathroom is the same,
but a new white suite is a big improvement.
The original stained glass has been incorporated
into replacement windows in the landing and hall,
but the original staircase up to the attic remains,
as Terry successfully got planning approval
for the front dormer to remain.
This room here, we're particularly pleased with.
We gained full planning.
We can now keep it as the fourth bedroom.
It was problematic, because we had to take out this front window
and put a steel girder across, and then rebuild the whole lot
and redo the roof and also the roof at the front, here.
So, the house does now have four bedrooms.
But only one family bathroom.
I think I would have tried to incorporate an en suite
up here, in the attic.
There's one bonus, though, on the ground floor,
where the former loo has been converted into a wet room,
but what has been the effect on the budget?
Our original budget was about 30,000
and in total, we've spent 46,000.
Time to find out what two local estate agents think of this house,
that Terry and his brothers plan to sell.
I think the open plan kitchen dining room is fantastic.
It can be used as a kitchen diner, it can be used as a bit
of a party room, with the decking on the garden as well,
-with the bi-folding doors open.
-Lots of thought has gone into this.
We've got uPVC woodgrain finish, in character,
and in some cases, we have the original windows,
which give it a flavour of its original charm.
With the property being four-bedroom,
with no en suite, only a luxurious family bathroom,
I think it was essential to put a wet room in.
The estate agents reckon this property could make
between £1,100 and £1,300 per calendar month on the rental market,
but Terry plans to sell, so what could it be worth?
Remember they paid £239,000 at the auction
and have spent £46,000 on renovation, making £285,000 in total.
In my opinion, the value of this property is £375,000.
I would put this on the market in the region of £360,000-£370,000.
That valuation range from 360 to 375,000 would generate
a gross profit, before the usual selling expenses,
of between £75,000 and £90,000.
So, what does Terry think of that?
It's very good, well pleased with that, yeah. Absolutely fabulous!
The estate agents are clearly impressed with the finish
Terry's achieved, especially the lovely kitchen and dining area.
Comments like that are fantastic,
really nice. We're proud ourselves of what we've achieved
and to get them comments, the boys will be really pleased.
We'll have more news from the auction rooms around the country for you next time.
So make sure you join us for more Homes Under The Hammer.
Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd
E-mail [email protected]
Martin Roberts and Lucy Alexander visit a house in Lincoln, a property in Kent and a semi in Cardiff. 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.