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Hello, welcome to the show.
Now, buying a property, be it a home or an investment,
could possibly be the most expensive thing you ever buy.
So, with thousands of pounds involved,
you really should try and get the best value for money.
Where can you do that?
Well, maybe by heading down to your local auction.
Congleton in Cheshire has a strange link with
a very unexpected animal, the bear.
Unfortunately, though, this isn't a cuddly bear story.
Nowadays, bear baiting in the UK would be unthinkable.
But this blood sport once brought in huge crowds.
Congleton became notorious in the 1620s, when money saved to
buy a Bible for the town was used instead to buy a bigger bear.
Hence its peculiar nickname, "Beartown".
There are still a few bears in town, but thankfully, better treated.
# I want to give you a bear hug. #
Well, being only 30 minutes from Manchester by train,
a lot of people move to Congleton for the quieter life.
Well, if that is what you are looking for,
the property I am here to see really won't suit. This is it.
Two bedrooms, £40,000 was the guide price.
But before we go in, I've got to show you this. The reason it's SO
bad if you're looking for peace and quiet, is because not only is
it on a main road, it's right by these traffic lights.
So you don't get the constant vroom-vroom of the cars,
and the lorries and whatever else, you get them stopping at the
lights and starting their engines up and... Argh! Nightmare.
OK. That's the bad bit.
Let's find out what it's got to offer.
That's not ideal, is it?
Um... Yeah, the electric cupboard, just there, behind the door.
To a point that you've... Well, no, not ideal.
So, after that slightly startling start, what have we got?
Lots of stuff on the walls, that's for sure.
But, a little corridor, front living room there.
It's not a bad-sized space,
and certainly lots of character, with those beamy things going on.
Another beam here for... Watch your head on that.
Through to a rear sitting room, there's lots of wood going on.
-I say "wood"...
Closer inspection... That isn't, is it?
That's some kind of concrete-y, fibreglass-y, plaster-y faux wood.
The sort of thing you have in theme parks,
when it looks like boulders and stuff.
But somebody's gone to a lot of trouble to put it on. Hmmm.
Anyway, through there to this area here, this is the kitchen,
through to the bathroom.
I mean, for 40,000 quid, I know it's got a few quirky
things about it, but it's not a bad house, is it?
Well, top of the stairs and a real safety issue,
a potential disaster waiting to happen, here.
Because look what you've got.
Fair enough, top of the stairs,
bit of a landing area, going into that bedroom.
But nothing here apart from this tiny little area here,
when you come out of this bedroom here.
So the danger of basically stepping off there
and falling down the stairs is huge.
Aside from that issue, there are two good-sized bedrooms up here.
But shiver me timbers, more of those beams.
The rooms are nice and bright,
but I think I would want to get rid of these leaded windows and get
some double, maybe even triple glazing,
to keep the noise out.
The floor definitely has a slope, so a structural survey is a must.
Let us head outside to see
if that's on the straight, but hopefully not narrow.
Well, if you're looking for a house with lots of outside space,
you need to look somewhere else, because literally, all you have got
is that little bit of courtyard.
That bit there actually belongs to the next-door neighbours.
Now, it's not ideal, but I'm trying to find a plus point here...
If you were looking to rent this place out, tenants generally
don't like large gardens, something they have to look after, at least.
So what you've got here is space for your bins,
maybe somewhere you can put your bikes. So that's a positive.
# Cos I'm Mr Brightside. #
Perhaps a local estate agent might like to borrow my rose-tinted spectacles.
What does he reckon about this property, guided at £40,000?
You're probably looking to achieve somewhere in the region
If the property was placed on the rental market, I would expect to
achieve somewhere in the region of £400-£450 per calendar month.
Well, it's certainly a house with lots of character.
Some would call it quirky.
Not an ideal location, but remember that guide price, £40,000.
I actually think it's a really good one to go for.
Let's see who agreed, when it went under the hammer.
It's a two-bedroomed, end-terraced house.
I have a proxy bid on this of £28,000.
So bid with me at £28,000.
30 in the room. £30,000 in the room. At £30,000. 31 with me. 32.
33 with me. 34. At 34, I am out.
At £34,000. 34,500, 35, 35.
No? At 35,000, right in the middle, at £35,000.
Right at the back now, 35,500.
36. 36. 36,500.
37. No? At 36,500 now, by the light, £36,500.
37 anywhere else?
If not, 36,500 once, 36,500 twice,
third and final time, 36,500...
-Your house, well done.
Julia made that successful bid of £36,500.
That's £3,500 below the guide price.
Julia and her husband Mike are relative novices
when it comes to property development,
with two previous developments their only experience.
However, they're keen to get going with their latest purchase,
and I met full-time mum, Julia, back at the property
to find out their plans.
-Julia, great to meet you.
-What an interesting little place this is.
Tell me why you wanted to buy it.
Mainly the price.
It was the right price.
And I know this area a little bit,
so I knew that the price was a good price for this area, really.
What are you planning to do to it?
Most things really, it needs the damp sorting out.
It needs replastering, it needs rewiring,
it's got no central heating, new windows.
-Kitchen, bathroom, yeah, yeah.
All that needs ripping out and starting again.
Julia's certainly made a great assessment of the tasks ahead,
and I'm delighted to say, has in her sights one of the main
difficulties I can see about the house.
I'll need to get somebody in and have a look.
But if we can try and rearrange it, maybe bring it further out this
way, so that we can get a proper landing at the top.
-And what about all of this...wood, whatever it is?
It needs to go, really, doesn't it?
Well...somebody's gone to such a lot of trouble to put it in.
-It's a shame to say, "Yes", but...yes!
-It does, it needs to go.
-I think it takes up a lot of space, as well.
Get rid of that, open it up a bit.
The one big negative, if there are any, is the location.
Good and bad, good in terms of what it's close to,
-but right on this junction, you can hear the traffic, it's...
-This isn't even peak time, is it?
-Can't do anything about that though, apart from put in triple glazing.
-New windows, yeah.
I think we'll try and do the best we can with the windows.
And, like you say, other than that... I think, you know,
I've lived on a busy road, and you get used to it.
So I think, as a rental property,
I don't think that will be too much of an issue.
-And that's the plan, is it? To rent it out?
-Yes. Yeah, it is.
Well, before Julia can look for any renters,
she's got a long list of pretty big jobs to get done.
Although she does have a fairly healthy budget of around £23,000,
and a timescale of three to four months to get this dated
and wonky house ready for the rental market.
So, how involved are you going to be with it?
I will be here most days, to make sure that everything's going
-according to plan.
-Telling other people what to do?
-I look forward to seeing how you get on.
-Thank you, very much.
So it looks like the fake wood is destined to go, in Julia's
renovation of this little property in Congleton.
It's one of those ones that is going to be dramatically
different when we return.
Can't wait to see what it looks like.
You can find out, later in the show.
And talking of dramatically different,
it's hard to believe that Willesden, here in north London,
was once a rural village with a population of less than 20,000.
In the late 1800s, the population grew to 140,000
in just 25 years, thanks to the arrival of the railway.
# Guess I will spend my life in railway stations. #
The property I'm here to see today is part of these Victorian terraces,
probably built around the time of the railway station.
Well, it's in here, it's on the first floor, it's a one-bedder
and it has a guide price of £260,000-plus.
Let's see what those good old Victorians built.
First things first, in through the front door
and a flight of stairs to negotiate.
Now, I'm not going to let that put me off, although the decor might.
So a lot in this flat needs doing.
But only decoration and carpets and painting,
lots of egg-yolk yellows everywhere, and oranges.
Bathroom and through to the backroom,
painted in a very interesting sorbet tangerine colour.
But this is what I can't believe.
Look how close you are to the tube station! Look!
They literally are in your back garden.
Now, let's do a sound test.
FAINT SOUND OF TUBE TRAIN
(Doesn't make that much difference!)
So, could it be a positive, could it be a negative? I'm not quite sure.
It depends how quickly you need to get into town.
# If it makes you happy
# It can't be that bad. #
It's almost like this flat has got a pulse.
Because, when the trains go, the flat just slightly moves.
You've got the kitchen just here, which is a great size.
There's a table in there, so you can sit down and eat,
and through here, well, this is the front of the property.
This is currently laid out as the bedroom.
Now, I am thinking it would be served so much better
as a living room, a cosy lounge...
Why do you think this is the bedroom?
Do you think it's too noisy at the back?
If you slept at the back, you could hear the trains? What do you think?
I don't know, I'm going to leave that one with you.
But I think if this were mine, actually, I might swap it over.
Let's see what a local estate agent makes of this flat,
guided at 260,000.
-# People all over the world
# Start a love train, love train. #
So, if you were to keep this property laid out as it is,
but in good condition,
you'd be looking at around £350,000 for sales and you'd be looking
at around £1,300 per calendar month for the lettings market.
If you were to convert this into a two-bedroom property, it'd be
two double bedrooms, and you'd be looking at £400,000 for sales.
And you'd be looking at around £1,500 per calendar month
for the lettings market.
Well, this little flat over a few levels certainly has character
and lots of exciting options.
You could do a simple refurb, or you could think about
a complete overhaul. But is it too near to that train station?
Or will people absolutely love that?
Let's see what happens when this property went under the hammer.
A one-bed, first-floor flat.
250. Thank you, 250.
We've got 250, standing up at the back. Anyone else?
It is with you... Ah. 255, thought you had it. 260.
'Bidding started a little sluggish,
'but it soon became a nerve-jangling battle.
'We rejoin the bidding at 275,000.'
276, 277, 278, 279, 280, 281,
282, 283, 284, 285,
286... It might be...? One more go, yeah?
287, 288, 289, 290...
Must go one... 290... They are struggling a bit.
290, well done. 291.
Daren't ask him now! 292, right, I got two!
291, have a think.
Got 291 standing up.
First time, second time, third and last time, if you're all done...
Raj was the successful bidder.
He and his business partner finally purchasing the property for 291,000.
And he's definitely in the know when it comes to property.
Not only is Raj local, he has another ace up his sleeve.
I met him to find out how he knows all the right steps.
# He's Mr Know-It-All... #
-Thank you very much indeed.
-So, here you have a one-bedroom flat...
-That's right. That's right.
-..with a tube station...
-..right there. I mean, is that handy?
Is that going to put buyers off? What do you think?
I think... It may put some buyers off
but the real charm of this property
is actually the location of the station.
It's about ten minutes into central London to get to Bond Street
and about 15-20 minutes into Canary Wharf, so that is actually
one of the charms and the reason we actually chose this location.
So, tell me, what is your knowledge of property?
Well, by profession I am actually a property solicitor
and that's what actually inspired me
to actually try a bit of dab hand at property developing.
I used to see a lot of clients make a bob or two on the property game
after lots of hard work and perseverance.
-I got my first property about four or five years ago...
..and I've done a few projects myself and this one is together with
my business partner and I've done a handful with him as well.
So, what advantage do you have over somebody else
that may just go to a property auction?
I think I knew the legalities of it.
I know, on your show, Martin and yourself are always telling people to look at the legal packs,
so whenever the legal packs are there for any property
myself or my business partner are interested in,
I scrutinise it with a fine tooth comb,
make sure there's no sort of hidden extras or hidden muckies
or special conditions which could be overly onerous.
# We laid down the law
# So what you need me for...? #
See, it's not just Martin and I that swear by the legal pack
and Raj is ready to rewrite the laws of this flat's layout.
So, what we're looking to do is we're looking to reconfigure the property.
At the moment, it's a one-bedroom
so what we are going to be doing is taking the wall down
between the current bedroom and the actual kitchen
and relocating the kitchen into an open-plan area,
and the front bedroom will actually become the open-plan living area
with the kitchen combined.
So, you're looking at creating a lounge/kitchen area, one space?
-And making that tiny little bit left over...
-It can work. It has worked on previous projects...
It can actually work!
That's going to be a shoebox but I know we're in London
and we are literally a stone's throw from the tube
but that is going to be a very small room.
In all honesty, now, come on, this is your game,
how much value can you add by doing that?
We would hope a little bit.
We've spoken to a few agents and knowing from some of the projects
we've done in the past as well, you are right, we are in London.
Even that small second bedroom where you can just about squeeze that second bedroom in,
it does actually make it worth doing.
Could Raj be right?
His tangerine dream might give you nightmares if you live anywhere else.
London? He knows his stuff.
He's given himself two and a half months to sort this flat out.
-So, come on, how much are you going to spend here?
-We've got a budget of £15-20,000.
I think from previous experience that's a fair estimate
but obviously we always have a contingency.
-You never know if something...you know...some uglies may crop...
-Oh, you're so sensible.
HE LAUGHS If there's any man that's going to do it right, it's going to be you!
-Check this, Raj.
-I really hope so, Lucy.
Are you that strict? Are you that stringent with everything you do?
It's got to be by the book?
I think sometimes but sometimes I get lazy.
I know there can be delays and sometimes builders don't turn up.
Sometimes materials are not available
-and sometimes I can't be bothered to get out of bed as well!
-And I bet that bugs you like crazy
-because I know that you like everything just so.
Well, I just hope you do end up making a bob or two.
-Thank you very much indeed.
-Cos that's what it's all about for you.
-Thank you very much.
-Thank you so much.
So, property solicitor turned property developer Raj
has his latest property for his portfolio,
and if it all goes to plan,
then he is potentially looking at a nice tidy profit.
But, does he really think bedroom number two is worthwhile?
Taking that wall down, is it really going to add that much value?
You can find out if Raj does make his bob or two
later on in the programme.
There's big plans to sort out this ambulance station's ills.
There's going to be an extension
and eventually then be a swimming pool out on the site.
And has our property solicitor caught the development bug?
We'll definitely be hitting the auction room again.
Hope to buy sooner rather than later.
Time to return now to our two-bedroom end-terraced house
with a guide price of £40,000,
situated in the Cheshire town of Congleton.
# Do, do, do, come on and do the conga
# Do, do, do, it's conga night for sure... #
No, no, no, no. Congle-TON.
Oh, never mind.
It was a lot of house on offer for a guide price of 40,000.
And it was even better value for Julia, the successful bidder,
as she paid just £36,500 at the auction.
She was looking to let out the property and knew what needed doing.
Six months have passed and we've returned to Congleton to see if
Julia's managed to turn this house from fake wood into really good.
# All the boys and the girls
# They got it going on
# And when the beat kicks in
# You feel it in your bones
# And when the basement cracks
# And the needle drops
# You can't turn back
# And you just can't stop
# All the boys and the girls... #
I think we can safely say,
Julia's dragged this oddity back into the 21st century.
With new windows throughout, that traffic noise is much more tolerable
and those stairs aren't scaring me any more which is always nice.
Julia's even put some wood back in.
Real this time.
The main things that we've changed since you were here last
is the windows were replaced.
We've taken most of the walls back to brickwork
and re-plastered, rewired. Erm...
New kitchen, new bathroom, new floors upstairs, new flat roof.
Most things that could be done have been done.
And the house looks all the better for it.
It's not just been a redecoration either.
Julia's also reconfigured some of the rooms
to make better use of the space.
OK, so this originally was the dining area.
It had quite a large fireplace in the corner which we removed
which has opened it up nicely and given us quite a bit more space.
So, we decided to put the kitchen mainly in this bit.
Previously it was just in the far side which just wasn't enough
space to get everything in, really.
So it's a nice light, airy space which we are really pleased with.
The house looks so much more spacious
but it's not just cosmetic changes Julia's made.
Along with new windows and a new flat roof,
there was a sloping floor upstairs that needed sorting.
OK, so in here, originally the floor was quite sloping
so we pulled up the floorboards
and realised that the floor throughout upstairs
was needing to be replaced cos the joists were quite rotten.
So we've done that and that's sorted the problem out.
We also changed the position of the door
because originally the door was going out onto the staircase,
which wasn't very safe,
so we made a little landing by using some of the space
from the main bedroom, which has worked a lot better,
so that's great.
No more wonky floor and dangerous staircase, just two solid bedrooms.
But building work can be expensive,
so I wonder how that ate into Julia's budget.
She bought the property for £36,500 and had a budget of 23,000.
How did she get on?
It's safe to say that we've totally gone over that with everything.
All the estimations were under, really.
So we've probably come in at about 40,000 all-in.
Ouch. That's almost double her original budget.
Those jobs clearly needed doing
but will Julia be able to get her money back?
We've asked along two local property experts to get their opinion.
If I was to place this property on to the resale market
I would anticipate
to achieve a price somewhere in the region of £80,000 - £85,000.
In my opinion, I would value this property at a figure
of between £80,000 and £85,000.
That top valuation would give Julia a potential profit
of £8,500 before taxes and fees,
but Julia always intended to rent, so how do those figures stack up?
If I was to place this property on to the rental market,
I would hope to achieve somewhere in the region
of £400 - £450 per calendar month.
The rental market is particularly strong in this area.
I would expect this to achieve a figure of £425 per calendar month.
I think that's fine, yeah.
I suppose 425 was the figure that I was thinking of
so we're about there, aren't we? So that's fine, yeah.
Yes, we certainly are there.
That would give her just over 6.5% yield.
Pretty good, even though for Julia it's not all about the money.
I enjoy buying houses that are run-down
and seeing the potential in them
and then seeing them turned round and improved.
So definitely pleased that I went to the auction and definitely pleased
that I was the one that got this house. So, yeah.
I'm in West Glamorgan in the beautiful Welsh Valleys.
Over one million pounds has been spent on cycleways and paths
to open up this region to the tourist trade.
It's hoped that tourism will revive the fortunes of places
like the village of Cymmer, where unemployment rates are quite high
and where local industries are few.
Well, today I'm here to see something a little bit unusual.
It's not a shop, it's not a garage, it's not a commercial premises
or a delivery depot.
It's actually this. Can you guess what it is?
This little curiosity used to be the garage for the local ambulances.
It's seen better days with its boarded-up frontage
and broken windows.
But with a guide price of just £10,000,
I think it's worth having a look inside.
Well, the main part of the building, not surprisingly, is this area here,
which is, I imagine, where the ambulances were actually stored.
And a good space.
Big, solid floor and you've got these large sliding doors,
which open up the whole of the front,
which straight away makes me think great potential for somebody who
needs that kind of access, such as maybe a builder's store
or a garage or an MOT centre that really needs to be able
to get in and out very easily.
Yeah. Good start.
Let's see what else there is.
Taking the stairs up to the first floor,
everything feels very institutional but it's solid enough.
Well, up here, bit of a disappointment
cos the space is only about half
what it is downstairs, primarily this little office area here,
little kitchen and a washing area, shower, toilet etc, there.
But maybe there's more.
Of course there's more.
Quite a bit more in the form of this land at the side of the building.
"Ideal for developing," I hear you cry!
When it comes to the planning classification of this building,
it's actually called "sui generis", which is Latin for,
"of its own kind" or "unique".
In other words, it's only got planning to be exactly what it is,
which is an ambulance station.
# Mr Blue Sky
# Please tell us why
-# You had to hide away for so long
# Where did we go wrong? #
It has a guide of just £10,000 but I think it's going to take
some blue sky thinking to really make the most of this place.
We asked the agent from the auction house which sold it
whether or not there was any chance of turning this into an investment.
I think a local builder or mechanic or somebody looking to store
materials would probably pay £150 - £200 per calendar month.
Well, at first glance an interesting opportunity, this one,
but once you delve a little bit deeper,
the options do seem to be a little bit limited.
I don't think it's financially viable to knock it down and build something in its place
but if the right person needed this kind of space,
well, it could be absolutely spot-on for them.
Let's find out who it was who decided to resuscitate
this old ambulance station by going to the auction.
This is on behalf of the Welsh Ambulance Services Trust.
I've got a proxy bid here, ladies and gentlemen.
I'm going to go straight in at the reserve at 12,500.
12,500 is bid. Any advance?
13, thank you. 13,000 is bid. Proxy's out. 13,500.
13,500. 14, 14,500,
14,500, 15, 15,500,
17, 17... Right, 17 is on you, sir. At 17,000.
17,000 is bid. Any advance?
17,500, 18, 18,500,
19, 19,500, 20.
20. 20,000 is bid.
21,500. 21,500 seated here.
21,500 is bid.
21,500. Any advance on 21,500?
22, thank you. 22... Half.
22,500. Looking for 23, sir. I've got 22,500. 22,500 it is then.
I'm going to sell it at 22,500 if I don't see anyone quickly.
22,500, be quick! 22,500...
-Yours, sir, 22,500.
The cheerful bidder delighted
at getting the former ambulance hall for £22,500 was Peter.
Occupational health nurse Peter was at the auction with his son, Simon.
We caught up with them to hear what made them
so excited about this particular property.
Peter, Simon, lovely to meet you both. Congratulations.
Tell me why you wanted to buy this place.
Basically I want to turn it into a holiday let
for the disabled downstairs and enabled people upstairs.
So a holiday let for disabled children or disabled of all ages?
-Anyone that needs it.
So, why do you want to do that particularly?
Well, I'm a nurse so I obviously work
with all sorts of people and it's got a...
I feel there's a need for accommodation
with disabled in mind in the area.
Basically, what we're going to do is keep a garage space
for when the disabled come in. They can drive straight into the building.
There's going to be bedrooms downstairs,
an extension out to the side
to create a big lounge and a kitchen area,
and upstairs I'm going to extend the footprint of the building upstairs
-to create accommodation upstairs.
-So quite an ambitious plan then.
And eventually there'll be a swimming pool out on the side.
'Swimming pool eventually? My goodness.
'Peter really does have a vision.
'However, this is an ambitious project,
'so how much is it all going to cost?'
-Approximately about 50,000.
And what's your involvement going to be, Simon?
I've been an electrician for about five years,
so I'm going to try and give my father a hand with the electrics.
So, is this designed to be a profit-making venture then?
No, not really. It's just something for me to do.
I'm coming up to my retirement.
I've got about another four or five years before I retire
and this is my retirement project.
What's the timescale?
It will be at least a year.
Obviously I am in full-time employment so it won't be...
-I couldn't say six months.
-It'll be at least a year.
So, once you've done this then, any plans for anything else?
No, my wife said this is it.
Well, listen, congratulations.
Good luck with it and I really do wish you all the best
-with the venture.
Well, what a potentially lovely new life
for this former ambulance station, but of course
it does depend on getting that all-important planning permission.
Will Peter get it? You can find out later in the show.
Back to Willesden in north London, a place that was once a village
but was transformed to a bustling borough
by the arrival of the railway.
Unfortunately, the property I went to see
was a little too close to the tracks.
# Train roll on...
# Outside my door... #
But jumping on the property train was Raj, a property solicitor who,
along with his business partner, paid 291,000
for this one-bedroom flat.
But he didn't want to keep it a one-bed for long.
So, what we're looking to do is reconfigure the property.
At the moment it's a one-bedroom, so what we're going to be doing
is taking the wall down between the current bedroom
and the actual kitchen, and relocating the kitchen
into an open-plan area.
-And making that TINY little bit left over...
-It can work. It has worked on previous projects.
It can actually work.
With a £20,000 budget and a two to two-and-a-half month timescale,
Raj was very confident.
So, when we return five months later,
has Raj found that extra space?
That original bedroom is now a bright kitchen-cum-lounge.
You know, so far I am surprised.
This doesn't feel nearly as cramped as I thought it would.
The original kitchen is now a second bedroom
and the boiler has been housed in a nice, sleek cabinet.
The original bedroom still needs a bit of tidying up
but this reconfiguration and refurbishment is looking good.
The room which we're currently standing in was the former kitchen.
Now you can see it's actually become a second bedroom
and I think that's worked very well. The back bedroom remains
but at that time there were pretty much dark colours on the wall
so what we've done is we've used neutral colours throughout
the flat, new flooring put down.
The actual bath suite,
we've retained the actual one which was there before.
We thought that was a good one, but as you can see,
it's had a good polish up so we think it fits the bill.
Raj changed his mind about knocking the wall down
between what was the lounge and the kitchen
to create an open living space, and I think that's a good use
of the footprint, and the finish is impressive.
Raj hasn't undertaken a lot of the work he originally thought.
Has not replacing the bathroom and keeping that wall saved his budget?
We had initially estimated a budget of £15,000 - £20,000
but that involved the taking down of the stud wall
and putting in RSJs and so forth.
However, because we decided not to go ahead with that,
the budget's actually come in significantly under.
I think when everything's totally finished, there's a few
snagging items to do, I think we'll have looked at hitting
probably about the £15,000 mark, so we're very, very happy with that.
It's five months since we were last here
but Raj let a friend use the flat for two months
before spending three on doing the work, so only a slight expansion
on his two and a half month timescale.
And, unfortunately, there is one final improvement Raj didn't do.
He hasn't changed the windows and I think that would have
made this flat SO much more attractive if he decides to sell on.
He might not be able to change the trains but the sound? Mm...
# Can't ignore the train... #
But there's only one way to know if Raj is on track
for a potential profit, and that's to get a pass
from two local estate agents.
Paying £291,000 at auction and with a renovation spend of 15 grand,
Raj's total spend is 306,000. So, what is the flat worth now?
I feel, in the current market, the correct price is £350,000.
I think this property would sell for around £375,000.
I feel the correct rental figure per calendar month
is £1,400 in the current market.
I feel this property would rent for around £1,300 - £1,350
per calendar month.
So, taking those top values,
a sale would give Raj a potential pre-tax profit of £69,000
and if he rented the flat he could achieve just under a 5.5% yield.
I'm very happy with those values. It's exactly what I'd expected.
I think we will market the property at £375,000 and if we can get
a resale figure between 350 - 375,
we're more than likely to sell it on.
If not, we'll put it onto the lettings market.
We'll definitely be hitting the auction room again
but I think the trick about buying at auctions is to be patient
and not to buy in haste and repent at leisure.
So, most certainly we'll be in the auction room again
and we hope to buy sooner rather than later.
# Into the valley
# Betrothed and divine... #
Yes, it's time to return to the valleys and this building,
a former ambulance station
in the Welsh village of Cymmer, West Glamorgan.
It had a guide price of £10,000,
which seemed reasonable for a lot with a fair bit of land.
So, what to do with it?
The imaginative and laudable answer was supplied by Peter,
who'd bought the property for £22,500.
With a budget of £50,000 and help from his electrician son, Simon,
Peter, an occupational health nurse, saw this as a retirement project
and hoped to develop this building into holiday accommodation
for touring cyclists.
And he planned that the ground-floor would be developed specifically
to accommodate people with disabilities
and underprivileged children.
Now, what are you going to do if they say, "You can't do this"?
Uh... We'll approach that when it comes to that!
This was both an exciting and incredibly worthy project
but having paid £12,500 above the guide price,
and having no planning in place,
Peter and Simon were certainly taking a chance.
Three years later,
and we've come back to see what's become of Peter's dream project.
# You are nearer than heaven
# I get the feeling
# I get nearer by the day... #
Well, they took a chance and it's obvious something has caused delays.
Most of the time it's been regarding the planning permission
but there was an issue with obtaining bat and reptile reports.
There was one newt found on the property
and we had to take precautions then to remove newts
and to observe that there wasn't any further,
and also to put up a barrier to stop any coming in.
Newt protection and planning permission issues,
as well as waiting for the sale of his mother's property,
means it's been nearly three years since he started,
but thanks to his perseverance,
Peter's dream can finally be realised
as that particularly tricky planning permission has been granted.
Basically, this is the ground floor of the apartment
and the majority of the work will involve this new extension here
in this section to create a lounge and kitchen facilities
for the disabled unit.
Peter will then divide the main garage section into five.
a garage space-cum-storeroom
and the bathroom.
So, the building will effectively be split into two flats,
each with three bedrooms, a bathroom and a kitchen,
with the ground-floor flat adapted for people with disabilities.
There will also be a communal area in the ground-floor extension
and, all being well, Peter plans on installing
the property's own hydro pool.
At the moment, it looks as though his dream project will cost
a total of £72,500.
Is Peter on the right track?
We asked two local estate agents to give us their thoughts
on Peter's plans so far.
In this area, local businesses do struggle.
There isn't an awful lot happening in this village.
Businesses don't seem to last long because of the economy here.
There is vast unemployment in these valleys, so it is very difficult.
This is a very popular area for mountain biking
and they'll pay good money for good runs.
Accommodation which is planned which is a three-bedroom flat
and one that's going to be completely geared
for disabled users, I think that's going to carve
quite a nice niche for him and I think it will
attract that type of mountain biker in that market.
When fully finished and including a pool, what does the agent
think a commercial enterprise based on Peter's plan could make?
That's quite a difficult one
because there aren't a lot of commercial properties in this area,
so I think you'd probably be looking at about 600 per calendar month.
That would mean around a 10% yield.
If, by some unfortunate circumstances,
the local economy couldn't sustain the business,
and assuming planning permission could be obtained,
would Peter get his projected £72,500 investment back
if the building were to be turned into two residential flats?
I think you would get anything between 375 and 400
per calendar month per unit.
To change this into a three-bedroom good-sized accommodation
you would probably market each unit
for around about £35,000 - £40,000.
I would put a vacant possession value
on each flat of circa £40,000
if it's done to a high standard
and to the standard that is intended in the planning permission.
This is a dream project for Peter
but would he think about this plan B?
I may consider splitting it into two units if the business didn't take off
but basically it's quite exciting.
I thrive on this sort of thing
and I'm just looking forward to getting into it.
Well, that's it for today but join us next time
for some more auction action.
And stories of property developing.
-Look forward to seeing you then.