Episode 64 Homes Under the Hammer


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Episode 64

A chalet bungalow in a bad state of repair in East Peckham in Kent, a piece of land in Tredegar in Wales and an end-terrace in Hartshill in Warwickshire are all sold at auction.


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Transcript


LineFromTo

Hello, welcome the show.

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Now, when you're just starting out, getting to grips with property

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investment, it can be a little bit tricky.

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Yeah, but doing your research will go a long way.

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Trust us, we do know our business.

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Yes, and when it becomes a little less daunting,

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maybe that's the time to head down to your local property auction.

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From what I've seen throughout my years,

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the best advice I can give someone purchasing at auction is go in with

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a good idea, and knowing what you want.

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Yes, but with a huge variety of property on offer,

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sometimes you need to be flexible,

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maybe altering your ideas or even your budget.

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Can this be said for any of the buyers onto today's show?

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Let's find out what they bought.

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In East Peckham, Kent,

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this three-bed chalet bungalow makes me feel like

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I'm in The Day Of The Triffids.

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These plants feel like they're coming to eat you!

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Beauty is in the eye of the beholder with my heavy plant at the site of a

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former care home in Tredegar in Wales.

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So, actually, this is a bit of a bonus.

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The drive's blocked at this three-bed end terrace in Warwickshire.

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To fell or not to fell?

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That is the question.

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Before you do anything, do your research.

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All of these properties have been sold at auction,

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

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-they went under the hammer.

-It's yours, sir.

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Now, to East Peckham.

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No, not the Del Boy and Rodney one in London, you plonker!

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This village in Kent, about five miles from Tunbridge.

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The oast houses here reveal that it was once the centre of the

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hop-growing industry,

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and it's still surrounded by beautiful Kent countryside.

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On the outskirts of this sleepy village is the property I'm here to see.

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It's a semidetached,

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three-bedroom house that's described as a chalet-style bungalow.

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And it has a guide price of £195,000+.

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Look, you certainly get plenty foliage for your money.

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You're going to need to get your gardening gloves on for this one,

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because...

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# It's a jungle out there

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# It's a jungle out there... #

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I made it through the nettles unscathed.

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Oh... OK, this is what's known in the industry as really stinky.

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The smell hits you straightaway.

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To my left, let's see, a kitchen, good size.

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That's the only good thing I can say about it.

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It needs to come out. It's covered in grime!

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Just grime on top of grime.

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Oh, you need a new kitchen in there.

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I think these walls, at some point, might have been white,

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but they've yellowed over the years.

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There's cobwebs everywhere.

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Through to reception room.

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You could salvage the fireplace.

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It's quite nice, a brick fireplace.

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Windows are double glazed, but old and...

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Yeah, you need to modernise them, too.

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Likewise, the door.

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Do you see the theme here? Everything needs to go.

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So far, I don't think there's much to be salvaged.

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The radiators look way past their sell-by date.

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The light fitting and hi-fi are definitely low rent,

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but it's the overwhelming smell that pervades, and not just in this room,

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it's next door, too.

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I'd say this is an extension.

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There are a few telltale signs.

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It feels a lot flimsier than the rest of the house, so...

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And looking up, you've got a problem here.

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It looks like damp.

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Perhaps there's been a leak, but you can see right through to upstairs,

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and then... OK, let's look for plusses.

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You do have patio doors.

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You might need new ones, but it leads out into a garden.

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It's not half a garden, is it?

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These plants feel like they're coming to eat you!

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They feel like they're going to break into the house.

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Maybe I've been watching too many scary movies,

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but doesn't this house remind you of the set of a certain carnivore

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plant film?

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# Little shoppa horrors

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# Bop sh'bop, little shoppa terror

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# Watch 'em drop

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# Little shoppa horrors

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# No, oh, oh, no-oh! #

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Phew! Lucky I haven't seen any man-eating plants in this garden...

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Yet! You could have a big space to play with here,

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but it's so overgrown that you'd need to remove all of the foliage to

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find out. I spy a garage next to the

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house, as well, but I won't go inside.

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I'd rather not risk being fed to the plants.

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Are there any more little horrors inside this house?

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Up the stairs.

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Lots of animal hair on these stairs.

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And I'm almost intrigued to know what colour these yellow walls

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originally were. Through to a bedroom, which is an OK size.

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It's quite narrow. You'll want to look at your electrics,

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make sure everything's safe.

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The boiler's really old, needs updating.

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And quite an odd-looking platform.

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It seems a bit out of place.

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When you're coming upstairs, of course,

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this is your headroom as you're coming up the stairs,

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but you could really utilise this dead space and make it...

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Just make it a bit cleaner.

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So, you would have wardrobes, perhaps, here, some sort of storage space.

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Oh. When the outside comes in, darling.

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I like it. It's a bit of a feature, isn't it?

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So, your plants are literally coming inside your house.

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No need to buy too many pot plants, I guess.

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All of this ivy and other plant life could be causing issues with the

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masonry, but you wouldn't know until you hack it back.

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And, arachnophobes, look away now!

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Because while the second bedroom down the hall doesn't have a forest,

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it does have its own type of outside predators sneaking in.

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# A spider web and I'm caught in the middle... #

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Across from the second bedroom,

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there's a rather gritty-looking bathroom that needs stripping out.

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Upstairs looks just as neglected as downstairs,

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and we still have one more room to go.

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Through to... OK, this is a really long bedroom.

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Now, the reason it's long...

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Remember downstairs, I said I thought there was an extension on the house?

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Well, you'll find that the house originally stops here.

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It's been made longer.

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So, it's elongated, good, good size and, actually,

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you've got a toilet off there, so that all works.

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What doesn't work...

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The holes I've spotted.

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Yes. Downstairs, I spotted holes in the ceiling.

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These are the holes from the floor.

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It looks pretty wet and damp.

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You may find there's been a burst pipe, the bathroom's next door.

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It just needs some investigation.

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And if you can see past the grime and the hole, you know,

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the potential could be great.

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We asked a local estate agent to make his way through the jungle and

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give us his opinion on the bungalow, guided at £195,000+.

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# I was standing in the jungle

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# I was feeling all right... #

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This property is not very nice at all.

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In fact, it's one of the worst I've seen in 40 years in the business.

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No argument from me on that.

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This is a really big project.

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What could it cost to renovate?

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If I was managing this project,

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I would expect to spend approximately 40,000 doing it up.

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But would it be worth the bother?

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It's guided at £195,000+.

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What could it sell for once done up?

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When this property is refurbished to a decent standard,

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I would suggest the value is approximately £335,000.

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This house clearly hasn't been loved for a very long time,

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so whoever buys it needs to strip it back to make sure it's brought up to

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modern standards. And then you've got that hole in the roof.

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But despite these problems, this could be a great project for someone.

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Let's find out who saw the potential when it went under the hammer.

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We'll start at 200 on this, go up.

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205 anywhere?

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I've got 200 down here. Anyone else? 200?

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First time, second time, third and last time...

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I know! Well, you've bid.

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I'll take yours, cos, well done.

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205. I'm just having a bit of fun, really.

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205. 210. You thought you'd got it, didn't you?

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-Hard luck!

-This lot proved popular.

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We rejoin the bidding at £257,000.

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257.

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It's worth a go. 259.

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Now, this is the crunch one.

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261? Just over that limit.

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259 in the aisle.

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First time, second time, third and last time...

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Sold, 259.

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The successful bid of £259,000 came from Natalie,

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and this particular project is a venture with her husband,

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brother-in-law, and a friend.

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I met her at the very tired bungalow to find out why they

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had been prepared to spend 64 grand over the guide price to get it.

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Natalie, hello.

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-Hi.

-Pleased to meet you.

-Nice to meet you.

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-And congratulations.

-Thank you.

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Now, is this a first for you?

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So, my husband and I have got a few rental properties that we've sort of

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done over the last ten years - ten, 15 years.

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And last year we did a smaller, much smaller project than this.

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It was a flat. This is the first time I've bought at auction,

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and it's a much bigger project than I've done before.

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OK. So, it's more distressed than anything you've been used to?

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Yes. Yes, looking round it today, as well,

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it's slightly worse than I remember it being.

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-Oh, really?

-Yes!

-So, you did come to see this property before you bid?

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-I did, yes.

-Nothing about it put you off?

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No, I actually got a really nice feel for it.

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And like I say, it was, I thought, in slightly better condition.

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But actually, coming back today, it's fine.

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What scares me is out the back.

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It's... But I think that's just clearing.

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So, hopefully it will be all right.

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-You said the garden was scaring you.

-Mm.

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See, I wouldn't be scared by the garden so much.

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I would just be like, well, you know,

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you just clearing it all out and turf it or pave it,

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but what's scaring you about that?

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Just the volume of stuff out there.

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And obviously, you can't even get in to the garden at the moment,

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it's so overgrown

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Yeah, you're probably right, actually.

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Once we get it moving, and just start clearing things out,

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then it probably won't take as long as I think it does,

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or I think it's going to.

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Talk me through your plans.

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So, you come in the door, what are you doing?

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I don't think, structurally, we're looking to do anything major.

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We're not going to build a big extension or anything like that.

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It'll be a case of, if we can keep the walls, great, if not,

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we might need to redo the walls.

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Probably re-plaster some of the ceilings.

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New kitchen, new bathroom.

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I think possibly make the bathroom slightly bigger,

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if we can take a little bit of room off one of the other bedrooms.

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There's a sloping wall in one of the bedrooms,

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so either block that in or make it into a cupboard.

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And then it will be just making sure

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it's then done up to sort of sell on,

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-so...

-You do have, as you say, you do have an issue with the ceiling...

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-Yes.

-..in one part.

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It looks very wet.

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-It looks like there's been a leak there somehow.

-A leak, yeah.

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I think the joists do feel a bit damp, so if they're OK,

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then, fine, we'll keep them,

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but if not we might just need to replace some of those.

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Natalie will be project managing this on behalf of her three

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business partners. They hope it will be the first of many,

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and it looks like she's all over this one,

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with a sensible timescale of up to six months,

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and a budget of 40 grand.

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I can tell you're just one of those people that can come in, see past

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all the kind of dirt and rubbish,

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and you've got a real clear idea in your head,

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so I can't wait to see what that idea translates to.

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-OK.

-Best of luck.

-Thank you very much.

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-And congratulations again.

-Lovely. Thank you.

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-Thank you.

-Natalie's the kind of woman who instils confidence.

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She's looking to expand her property experience from rentals to

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renovations, and she's pretty sure she's got a sound property.

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But will she find any more cracks or holes in her plan?

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Let's hope not. You can find out what happens later in the show.

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# Ar ben Waun Tredegar

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# Mae 'nghariad i'n byw... #

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I'm In the Ashvale suburb of Tredegar in south-east Wales,

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30 miles from Cardiff.

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Tredegar is famous as the birthplace of Aneurin Bevan,

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the creator of the National Health Service.

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Well, not surprisingly, they are hugely proud of their

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association with Nye Bevan around here.

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And amongst other things, they named the local nursing home after him.

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Well, unfortunately, that nursing home has now gone,

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leaving this plot of land.

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Which is a good coincidence,

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because this is the thing that was up for auction,

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with a guide price of £100,000 to £120,000.

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0.9 acres...

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Well, let's explore.

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All that's left of the former care home is a bit of hard standing.

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Three stone walls, quite a few weeds and an electricity substation,

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which I'm a bit wary of.

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# Well, I look at it myself as the beginning really of an exploration

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# That's the reason we're exploring... #

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So, it's a good-sized plot.

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What we really want to know is, what could it be used for?

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What is its potential to be

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something you could build on, therefore?

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That's the kind of question a developer will be asking before they

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took the project on. Well, the good news is,

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it has had a building on here before,

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so it's what they call a brownfield site.

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So, that's good news. This second thing is,

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you are within the local development zone, if you like.

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You can see, you're surrounded by houses.

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So, again, that is good news.

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You could make something called a pre-application, a pre-app,

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to the council. That's where, even before you get involved in the

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planning process, you can get in contact with them, even over the

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phone, sometimes as informally as that, and say,

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what do you think would be allowed on this plot?

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And you can do that before the auction, which is a great thing to do.

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And then you go through the whole process of getting your planning

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permission. Now, glancing around, seeing what I've seen,

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knowing what I know, I reckon this could be a real doozy of a plot.

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# Exploration... #

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But you know what they say - don't count your bizarre,

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unexpected and extremely large doozies before they hatch.

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Or should that be chickens?

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Well, whatever. Remember, plots have a tendency to thicken.

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So, it's all looking good.

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However, this is where it's really important that you read the legal

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pack, because you could think, well, this is a really interesting,

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moneymaking opportunity... And it probably is.

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However, the person who's selling it has also recognised that,

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so they've put into the contract of sale something called an overage

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clause. And overage clauses take all sorts of different styles, types,

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whatever, but it's basically saying, if in the future the value of this

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land, or what you build on it, goes up,

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then you have to pay the person who's selling it a bit more money.

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Now, that could be the value of the land,

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if it goes up because of planning permission,

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or it could be the development value of the finished properties.

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It could amount to a significant amount of money.

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And as long as you factor that into your thought processes, that's fine.

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But to find out suddenly,

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as you're about to sell all your properties for a lot of money that

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you have to give 50% back, that would be bad.

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In this particular case,

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the overage clause is on the rising value of the land once it gains

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planning permission, not on any properties built here, so that's good.

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It often pays to look for the good in things.

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Well, situated in the core of the plot is this.

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It is an electricity substation.

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You can actually hear it humming with those millions of watts of power.

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Is it a good thing to have it there? Well, normally not.

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However, I think this could actually be a bit of a bonus because one of

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the things you really need when you're building a development like

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this, putting houses on it, is you're going to need your services.

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Under normal circumstances,

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you might have to pay to have a bigger supply that could cope with

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all the houses you might build here put in especially.

0:16:540:16:55

But the fact this is here already means you can run all your

0:16:550:16:58

cables or whatever to the houses you might build really easily.

0:16:580:17:01

So, actually, this is a bit of a bonus.

0:17:010:17:05

See what I mean? Not so bad after all.

0:17:050:17:07

But the substation is not the only stationary thing on site that you're

0:17:070:17:11

not allowed to touch.

0:17:110:17:13

Well, situated at the front of the site is this absolutely magnificent

0:17:140:17:19

oak tree. I'm not the only person who thinks it's magnificent

0:17:190:17:22

because it has got what's called a tree preservation order on it.

0:17:220:17:26

And those are put on trees which the experts think are worthy of protection.

0:17:260:17:30

So, you can't legally chop that down, and quite rightly so.

0:17:300:17:34

However, if you buy this plot of land, you need to know what trees,

0:17:340:17:37

if maybe there are other ones, or whatever,

0:17:370:17:40

that have got these things, TPOs on them, tree preservation orders.

0:17:400:17:44

There isn't a big sign on it

0:17:440:17:45

which says, "This tree is protected," either,

0:17:450:17:47

so you have to go to the local planning authorities -

0:17:470:17:49

they have lists of these kind of things -

0:17:490:17:50

and then you will know what trees, if any,

0:17:500:17:52

on a site are actually protected.

0:17:520:17:55

And it's not something the authorities deal with lightly.

0:17:550:17:58

Ignore a TPO and risk facing a £20,000 fine.

0:17:580:18:04

Clearly, there's more to brownfield site development than first meets

0:18:040:18:08

the eye. We called in a local estate agent to give us her lowdown.

0:18:080:18:13

The main things to look out for when purchasing a plot of land -

0:18:130:18:16

restriction on access rights,

0:18:160:18:18

if there's any preservation on any trees within the land,

0:18:180:18:22

any planning restrictions.

0:18:220:18:24

So, all these things are a main

0:18:240:18:25

factor when looking at purchasing land,

0:18:250:18:27

and you'd be wise to look into that and get them checked out.

0:18:270:18:29

What sort of developments are you

0:18:290:18:31

likely to get planning permission for on this site?

0:18:310:18:34

The ideal properties for this land would be starter homes,

0:18:340:18:38

so you'd be looking at two-bedroom semis,

0:18:380:18:40

or three-bedroom semidetached, affordable housing.

0:18:400:18:44

There is a demand for that in this area.

0:18:440:18:46

For your two-bedroom semidetached,

0:18:460:18:49

the average cost for build is around £70,000.

0:18:490:18:52

For a three-bedroom, you'd probably be looking £75,000 to £80,000.

0:18:520:18:56

So, would you risk £100,000 to £120,000 on this plot?

0:18:560:19:01

To me, it seems like a bit of a no-brainer.

0:19:010:19:05

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

0:19:050:19:08

There's a last-minute addendum to the guide price and, on the day,

0:19:090:19:12

it was set much lower.

0:19:120:19:14

Now guided at a lot less.

0:19:150:19:19

Guided at £58,000.

0:19:190:19:21

Will you start me somewhere near 58?

0:19:210:19:23

Make it £50,000, start me.

0:19:230:19:26

A lot of site, there, for just £50,000.

0:19:260:19:27

Thank you, 50, I've got you there, at 50.

0:19:270:19:29

Now, 51, can I see? Thank you.

0:19:290:19:31

51. 52 now.

0:19:310:19:33

The bidding got up to the new £58,000 guide price in a flurry,

0:19:330:19:37

but then surprisingly slowed right down.

0:19:370:19:39

We rejoin at 59,000.

0:19:390:19:41

At 59 on my right-hand side, and make no mistake, you're now out,

0:19:410:19:45

it's going to be sold. At 59,000 for the first time...

0:19:450:19:49

Second time... Third and last time at £59,000.

0:19:490:19:54

Yours, number 70, thank you very much.

0:19:540:19:57

The top bid was placed on behalf of company managing director Darren,

0:19:570:20:00

who we've featured before when his company bought this site of a

0:20:000:20:04

former school in Ebbw Vale in July 2014.

0:20:040:20:08

And when we last saw him,

0:20:080:20:09

his company was in dispute over the overage valuation of that land.

0:20:090:20:14

The local authority was saying the land was worth 200,000,

0:20:140:20:17

and both ours and our respectful client was saying 100.

0:20:170:20:21

The dispute was resolved by binding arbitration,

0:20:210:20:24

which agreed with the 100 grand valuation,

0:20:240:20:27

meaning a saving of 50 grand to his company.

0:20:270:20:29

Clearly, the potential pitfalls of overage clauses don't faze Darren.

0:20:310:20:36

He bought this one for 59 grand.

0:20:360:20:39

In a previous career, Darren worked on developing an early GPS system.

0:20:390:20:44

No surprises then that he had no trouble finding me on-site.

0:20:440:20:48

Darren, good to see you again.

0:20:480:20:50

-Good to see you again.

-How are you?

0:20:500:20:52

-Very well, thank you.

-So another plot of land.

0:20:520:20:55

-Yes.

-You're developing Wales.

0:20:550:20:58

In our own small way, yes, we are, yeah.

0:20:580:21:01

So, what attracted you to this site?

0:21:010:21:04

-A very late phone call before the auction.

-What?

0:21:040:21:06

-We had a phone call, an hour before the auction.

-No?

0:21:060:21:09

From a local housing association,

0:21:090:21:11

who are not allowed to bid at auction and they said,

0:21:110:21:13

were we aware of the site?

0:21:130:21:15

So, my partner went to the auction

0:21:150:21:17

and I scurried off to the solicitors.

0:21:170:21:19

I think we were made aware at 4pm and by 5:15pm,

0:21:190:21:22

-the hammer had gone down.

-So,

0:21:220:21:23

they've already said that they might be interested in some of the houses

0:21:230:21:26

-that you build.

-All of the houses.

0:21:260:21:27

It will be what we call a turnkey opportunity,

0:21:270:21:29

where we will take it through all the planning process,

0:21:290:21:32

get the designs done, agree a contract sum, and then on day one,

0:21:320:21:35

it will transfer ownership to the housing association.

0:21:350:21:38

Oh, wow, so you're building it, knowing that you've got it sold?

0:21:380:21:41

-Pretty much, yes.

-This seems like an arrangement where everyone wins,

0:21:410:21:44

the housing association gets new homes for their tenants,

0:21:440:21:48

Darren gets his development work and the council will get something out

0:21:480:21:52

of the uplift.

0:21:520:21:54

Do you have any indication at this stage,

0:21:540:21:56

what you might be able to build here?

0:21:560:21:58

We've done an outline with a local architect

0:21:580:22:00

-and we think we we'll get 15 houses on here.

-15.

0:22:000:22:03

-A mixture of two- and three-bed houses.

-OK.

0:22:030:22:05

At the moment,

0:22:050:22:06

the housing association are in discussions with the local authority

0:22:060:22:09

to see what the requirement is, maybe a couple of flats may go on here,

0:22:090:22:13

but certainly around the 15 level is what will go on here.

0:22:130:22:16

OK. So what will the build costs be for those?

0:22:160:22:18

You're looking, for a two- or three-bedroom house,

0:22:180:22:20

around £75,000, for the build costs of the house from DPC up.

0:22:200:22:25

You've then got the infrastructure costs and the services,

0:22:250:22:28

so if you rounded that up to around about £100,000,

0:22:280:22:31

that would not be far away, that would be a guide.

0:22:310:22:33

-You would be looking about 1.5 million build.

-OK.

-Overall.

0:22:330:22:37

-And potential sales value?

-About 1.9.

0:22:370:22:41

That would give you a profit of about 30%, would it?

0:22:410:22:44

-Ish? Is that what you work on?

-Probably a little bit less than that. That'd be ideal.

0:22:440:22:48

If we could get over the high 20s, then we would be very happy.

0:22:480:22:50

A couple of issues, obviously there is a substation where you would not

0:22:500:22:53

want it to ideally be. What are you going to do about that?

0:22:530:22:56

That sits off the site, there is an easement around the substation,

0:22:560:22:59

so we cannot build within three metres of it.

0:22:590:23:01

It will remain part of the development,

0:23:010:23:03

but owned by Western Power.

0:23:030:23:06

So, that just leaves the tree issue.

0:23:060:23:09

We hope that will stay within the development.

0:23:090:23:11

It is certainly protected by the authorities,

0:23:110:23:13

so we will work within the guidelines,

0:23:130:23:14

the environment team within the authority

0:23:140:23:16

-and it will be a nice feature of the development.

-Right.

0:23:160:23:19

Anything else you can see, which immediately sets

0:23:190:23:21

sort of alarm bells ringing or are you happy?

0:23:210:23:24

I think some of the retaining walls around the site

0:23:240:23:26

will give it a nice secure feel.

0:23:260:23:28

-People like to feel secure in their properties.

-Yeah.

0:23:280:23:30

It almost gives it a sort of gated community feel to it.

0:23:300:23:33

We've got some local amenities close by, local school around the corner,

0:23:330:23:37

so it's a really nice development opportunity.

0:23:370:23:39

What's the timescale?

0:23:390:23:41

Realistically, about 12 months,

0:23:410:23:44

I think on our last development we were a little bit more optimistic.

0:23:440:23:46

We were talking six to nine, but 12 months to get through planning,

0:23:460:23:49

get all the contracts agreed, get the design sorted,

0:23:490:23:52

and hopefully start in 12 months' time.

0:23:520:23:54

Right. And then the build?

0:23:540:23:56

Probably just under a year. Maybe 40 weeks.

0:23:560:23:59

Well done. Congratulations.

0:23:590:24:00

-Thank you, Martin.

-I look forward to

0:24:000:24:01

-seeing another one of your developments.

-Thank you very much.

0:24:010:24:05

Well, there are still a few hurdles to cross,

0:24:050:24:08

not least planning permission,

0:24:080:24:09

however, this could well be another fantastic development for Darren and

0:24:090:24:15

his team.

0:24:150:24:18

Will they manage to get 15 houses on here?

0:24:180:24:20

Will they stick within budget?

0:24:200:24:22

How will the time frames go? You know the usual questions.

0:24:220:24:24

You can find out later in the show.

0:24:240:24:26

Still to come...

0:24:280:24:29

Is this end-of-terrace in Warwickshire a sound property?

0:24:290:24:32

Why does that sound like that?

0:24:340:24:36

HOLLOW KNOCKING

0:24:360:24:38

In Tredegar, an end is in sight.

0:24:380:24:41

We will start constructing the kerb lines and the front gardens to all

0:24:410:24:44

the properties, as we work our way out of the site.

0:24:440:24:47

Time to get your explorer gear on as we head back to East Peckham in Kent

0:24:530:24:57

where earlier I made my way through the tangled undergrowth to visit

0:24:570:25:01

this chalet bungalow, guided at £195,000+.

0:25:010:25:06

Grime covered every surface on this place,

0:25:060:25:09

from the three bedrooms upstairs to the kitchen.

0:25:090:25:11

The extension wasn't any better and the whole place felt like a jungle,

0:25:150:25:19

inside and out.

0:25:190:25:21

We've all heard of bringing the outdoors in, but this was ridiculous!

0:25:210:25:25

You do have patio doors.

0:25:250:25:27

You might need new ones, but it leads out into a garden.

0:25:270:25:29

It's not half a garden, is it?

0:25:290:25:31

These plants feel like they're coming to eat you.

0:25:310:25:33

They feel like they are going to break into the house.

0:25:330:25:35

The plants didn't just look like they were coming inside the house,

0:25:390:25:42

they actually were inside the house!

0:25:420:25:44

Ivy was growing through the window in the first bedroom.

0:25:440:25:47

This was one problem you definitely couldn't "leaf" alone.

0:25:470:25:52

Ready to get to the root of the problem was Natalie who snapped it

0:25:520:25:56

up at auction as a joint venture between her husband,

0:25:560:25:59

his brother and a family friend, with Natalie project managing.

0:25:590:26:03

They paid £259,000 - a whopping 64 grand above the guide price.

0:26:030:26:10

And Natalie wasn't just going to get the garden shears out -

0:26:110:26:14

this needed the full works.

0:26:140:26:17

New kitchen, new bathroom,

0:26:170:26:19

I think possibly make the bathroom slightly bigger,

0:26:190:26:21

if we can take a little bit of room off one of the bedrooms.

0:26:210:26:25

And there's a sloping wall in one of the bedrooms,

0:26:250:26:28

so either block that in or make it into a cupboard.

0:26:280:26:31

No amount of fancy carpets would cover up the joists that were

0:26:310:26:35

rotting from the third bedroom all the way to the extension.

0:26:350:26:38

This property was going to take a lot of work.

0:26:380:26:41

Would their budget of 40 grand

0:26:410:26:43

stretch to fixing all of these issues?

0:26:430:26:45

Natalie originally gave herself a timescale of six months and we are

0:26:450:26:50

back even sooner than that -

0:26:500:26:51

just five months later - and I can feel it.

0:26:510:26:54

There has been a rumble in the jungle!

0:26:540:26:57

# Jungle boogie

0:26:570:27:00

# Jungle boogie Get it on

0:27:000:27:02

# Jungle boogie

0:27:020:27:03

# Jungle boogie Get it on

0:27:030:27:06

# Jungle boogie Get up with the boogie

0:27:060:27:09

# Jungle boogie Get up with the get down

0:27:090:27:11

# Jungle boogie Down with the boogie

0:27:110:27:13

# Jungle boogie Come and shake it around... #

0:27:130:27:17

Natalie has certainly found her groove when it comes to developing

0:27:170:27:20

property. Downstairs is unrecognisable.

0:27:200:27:24

What are the changes here?

0:27:240:27:25

So, in the kitchen,

0:27:270:27:29

we had the original door where you came into the kitchen over here on

0:27:290:27:33

the right. We have blocked that up.

0:27:330:27:36

On this other side, we've moved

0:27:360:27:38

the original back door from the corner

0:27:380:27:41

so we can actually make a bit more of a kitchen space and we have

0:27:410:27:45

removed one wall between the kitchen and the lounge.

0:27:450:27:48

There was once a rather large hole in the ceiling of this now stylish

0:27:490:27:53

room. How did they fix that?

0:27:530:27:55

When we investigated the roof,

0:27:550:27:57

which is a flat-roof extension at the back of the house,

0:27:570:28:00

we found that the joists were completely rotten.

0:28:000:28:03

The felting on the flat roof basically

0:28:030:28:05

had not been put down correctly or properly.

0:28:050:28:07

So it had been dripping through and basically rotted all the joists.

0:28:070:28:11

So we had to have all the joists replaced and we have replaced

0:28:110:28:14

obviously the floorboards and everything in the main bedroom

0:28:140:28:17

and the ceiling underneath.

0:28:170:28:18

After fixing the joists,

0:28:190:28:21

Natalie had to turn her attention to the botanical garden growing in the

0:28:210:28:25

first bedroom. The ivy had taken root in the water pipes, which meant

0:28:250:28:29

they all had to be replaced.

0:28:290:28:32

The creepy crawlies have now been banished to the outdoors, leaving

0:28:320:28:36

three beautiful-looking bedrooms.

0:28:360:28:38

The stairway headspace that was in the first bedroom has been boxed in

0:28:420:28:47

and the en-suite bathroom in the third bedroom has been removed to

0:28:470:28:51

create more potential storage space.

0:28:510:28:54

Natalie said they might make the bathroom bigger.

0:28:560:28:59

-Is it?

-In the bathroom we have put a false wall in,

0:28:590:29:02

which makes the bathroom slightly smaller,

0:29:020:29:05

but actually it suits the layout of the bathroom much better.

0:29:050:29:08

It may be smaller, but it wasn't the biggest challenge.

0:29:080:29:11

That must have been the garden, seeing as there was so much of it.

0:29:110:29:15

You couldn't get into the garden at all and there was so much brambles,

0:29:150:29:19

they actually found bikes, they found three or four bikes in there.

0:29:190:29:23

# I run around town

0:29:230:29:24

# Around round and round

0:29:240:29:25

# The pedal to the metal

0:29:250:29:26

# The pedal to whatever... #

0:29:260:29:28

An opportunity for re...cycling if ever there was one.

0:29:280:29:31

But now that the garden is the belle of the ball,

0:29:310:29:34

did it burst the budget?

0:29:340:29:35

The garden in total cost £10,000 and 3,000 of that was just to clear the

0:29:370:29:42

initial brambles out of the garden.

0:29:420:29:45

That is quite a hit on their original £40,000 budget.

0:29:450:29:50

How much did they end up spending?

0:29:500:29:52

We've actually spent 65,000.

0:29:520:29:55

A huge chunk of which was the joists

0:29:550:29:58

in the bedroom and also the garden, as well.

0:29:580:30:01

So that's a total of £324,000 - a substantial investment.

0:30:010:30:07

We asked two estate agents along to look.

0:30:070:30:10

First, the agent who saw it last time.

0:30:100:30:12

When I was here before, it was really terrible, it was awful,

0:30:120:30:16

one of the worst houses I have seen, as I said, in 40 years.

0:30:160:30:19

I think the changes have made the property feel a little larger and

0:30:190:30:22

certainly brighter.

0:30:220:30:24

The problem is, the accommodation has been reconfigured,

0:30:240:30:27

they've taken some internal walls down, I think that works very well.

0:30:270:30:31

It has transformed it from a fairly limited appeal to a much wider

0:30:310:30:36

selection of the house-buying community.

0:30:360:30:38

This is great news,

0:30:390:30:41

as Natalie and her partners always intended on selling the property.

0:30:410:30:45

They had it valued before we arrived,

0:30:450:30:47

but do the estate agents here think they will make a profit

0:30:470:30:51

on their 324 grand investment?

0:30:510:30:53

If I was asked to market this

0:30:540:30:55

property for sale in the current market,

0:30:550:30:57

I would recommend a guide price of £365,000.

0:30:570:31:02

I would anticipate the property selling in the region of £375,000.

0:31:020:31:07

The valuation we have had was 380,

0:31:070:31:10

which I did think could be on the high side.

0:31:100:31:12

So if we can get anything around 370, 375, then I would be really happy.

0:31:120:31:17

Selling for the estate agent's top estimate of 375 grand would mean a

0:31:170:31:22

potential profit of £51,000, minus taxes and fees.

0:31:220:31:27

Next time around, is there anything Natalie would do differently?

0:31:270:31:31

What I would do differently next time is make sure that I do my

0:31:320:31:35

budgeting properly right from the start.

0:31:350:31:38

I mean, it looks like we are going to make money on this,

0:31:380:31:40

but it could have easily been that we broke even,

0:31:400:31:43

so I will spend more time doing the sums in future.

0:31:430:31:46

We do like an interesting architectural design on the show and

0:31:520:31:56

I have found just that in the Warwickshire village of Hartshill.

0:31:560:32:00

Yes, this is what remains of Hartshill Castle from the 12th century.

0:32:000:32:06

Built in the Norman motte-and-bailey style,

0:32:060:32:08

this involved the tower being built on a very steep,

0:32:080:32:12

man-made mound for protection.

0:32:120:32:14

Beats getting a guard dog, I suppose.

0:32:140:32:16

# Don't rob another man's castle... #

0:32:160:32:23

So, from castles to cul-de-sacs, in this nice little estate,

0:32:230:32:28

we find our property.

0:32:280:32:29

It's an end terrace, it has got three bedrooms and a guide price

0:32:290:32:34

of £90,000+ and the front door is just beyond the garage.

0:32:340:32:39

First impressions, it's a quiet spot,

0:32:390:32:42

when they're not cutting the grass, of course.

0:32:420:32:45

It's certainly leafy, perhaps a little too leafy.

0:32:450:32:48

But more of that later.

0:32:480:32:51

Right, we're in. We have a nice, long hallway

0:32:510:32:55

but it feels pretty dark in here.

0:32:550:32:56

It is bright outside.

0:32:560:32:58

What have we got in here? To start, we have got a downstairs toilet,

0:32:580:33:01

good-sized downstairs toilet,

0:33:010:33:03

some of the piping would look better boxed in, I would say.

0:33:030:33:08

Down the hallway a little bit more, we have got a cupboard.

0:33:080:33:11

Wow.

0:33:120:33:13

Come here, come here, come here.

0:33:170:33:18

Hold it a minute. Hold it a minute.

0:33:180:33:20

KNOCKS ON WALL

0:33:200:33:21

You know what I'm thinking, don't you?

0:33:210:33:23

That could be knocked through as one and you could actually put a

0:33:230:33:26

downstairs bathroom in, if you wanted to.

0:33:260:33:28

Loads of space to play with there.

0:33:280:33:30

Stairs going up to the bedrooms, and in here,

0:33:300:33:33

we've got a really generous-size front reception room.

0:33:330:33:39

Into the kitchen...

0:33:390:33:41

And again, what a good-sized kitchen it is.

0:33:410:33:43

There's enough space in here to create a little bit more surface

0:33:430:33:48

space, so if you started from scratch,

0:33:480:33:50

you could make this layout exactly how you wanted it to.

0:33:500:33:54

Wow. And the windows, I do like the windows,

0:33:540:33:56

they all look pretty sturdy and relatively new and then we come to

0:33:560:34:00

the dining room...

0:34:000:34:02

..again, which is spacious.

0:34:030:34:06

So you've got a false wall here connecting these two rooms together

0:34:060:34:10

and this is the end wall, so that is the end of the house.

0:34:100:34:13

OK. That is strange because that's...

0:34:170:34:19

There's nothing on the other side of this.

0:34:190:34:21

Why does that sound like that?

0:34:210:34:22

HOLLOW KNOCKING

0:34:220:34:24

Now that has confused me.

0:34:240:34:25

I've got to check the rest of these walls out again.

0:34:260:34:29

# Knock, knock

0:34:290:34:30

# I'm tired of fooling around

0:34:300:34:32

# Knock, knock

0:34:320:34:34

# Knock, knock I wanna come in... #

0:34:340:34:36

I guess plasterboard was used for some reason.

0:34:360:34:39

It does give a good finish, but who knows?

0:34:390:34:41

Right. Let's start in this bathroom and what a big bathroom it is.

0:34:450:34:51

Now, it's not very often me and the cameraman share a bathroom.

0:34:510:34:55

We can't normally fit in.

0:34:550:34:56

This is a really big bathroom,

0:34:560:34:58

you've got everything you need in here.

0:34:580:35:00

Shower, bath, toilet seat, everything.

0:35:000:35:03

And you could probably get away with keeping most of that, as well -

0:35:030:35:07

it just needs decorating.

0:35:070:35:08

What a good start.

0:35:080:35:09

Out into the hallway, and you've got a massive bedroom in there,

0:35:090:35:15

needs new flooring, needs decorating, nothing else.

0:35:150:35:18

And the same in bedroom number two, wow!

0:35:180:35:22

All good-sized rooms.

0:35:220:35:24

And you know what? I want to bring you into this room here.

0:35:240:35:26

The smallest room...

0:35:260:35:28

Should I say, the smallest bedroom in the house?

0:35:280:35:31

This is called the box bedroom.

0:35:310:35:33

But you can get a single bed in here no problem at all.

0:35:330:35:36

Really excited about the size of the rooms in this property.

0:35:360:35:41

Gets a massive thumbs up from me.

0:35:410:35:43

There are little spots of damp here and there,

0:35:460:35:48

and whilst I'm a dog lover,

0:35:480:35:50

I suggest the wallpaper goes walkies,

0:35:500:35:54

along with some of the other decoration.

0:35:540:35:56

But when it comes to space, this house just keeps on giving.

0:35:560:36:00

But could it give some more?

0:36:000:36:02

Just wanted to nip out the front of the property,

0:36:020:36:04

just to talk about two things.

0:36:040:36:06

Firstly, the garage.

0:36:060:36:08

It's a really good-sized garage,

0:36:080:36:10

loads of space to work with in there.

0:36:100:36:13

And you know what? Because of the angle of this driveway,

0:36:130:36:15

I'm not even sure you'll really get a car in there in the first place.

0:36:150:36:19

So, could you use that garage space as house space?

0:36:190:36:22

Could you connect the two?

0:36:220:36:24

The second thing is...

0:36:240:36:25

..you've got this massive tree.

0:36:290:36:31

Now, this tree would have been here long before these houses were built,

0:36:310:36:35

and it is a beautiful tree, I've got to say.

0:36:350:36:38

But it is stopping a lot of light getting to the property,

0:36:380:36:43

and these roots may be causing a couple of problems.

0:36:430:36:47

Before you think, "Get rid of this tree," check up if it's got any

0:36:470:36:51

preservation orders or if it's in a conservation area.

0:36:510:36:55

# And you're barking up the wrong tree

0:36:550:36:58

# Well, you're barking up the wrong tree

0:36:580:37:00

# Yes, you're barking up the wrong tree... #

0:37:000:37:03

If you want to know if there is a preservation order on a tree,

0:37:030:37:06

then contact your local planning department.

0:37:060:37:08

It's also worth knowing that every tree isn't going to harm your property.

0:37:080:37:13

Get an expert in to check.

0:37:130:37:15

Before you do anything, do your research.

0:37:150:37:18

The new owner of this place will also need to get a locksmith in,

0:37:180:37:21

as the garage door key has gone missing.

0:37:210:37:25

Although it's attached,

0:37:250:37:26

there's no access from the inside to the garage.

0:37:260:37:29

Time to ask a local estate agent for his thoughts on this property,

0:37:290:37:33

guided at £90,000+.

0:37:330:37:36

It's a good end-terrace property, stacks of potential here.

0:37:360:37:39

And I don't think it would cost a great deal to get it right for the

0:37:390:37:42

open market. With regards to the garage at the front,

0:37:420:37:45

I think it has potential to convert to another room,

0:37:450:37:47

subject to planning permission, of course, from the local authority.

0:37:470:37:51

OK, let's get some numbers, then.

0:37:510:37:53

Will it be worth adding a bedroom?

0:37:530:37:55

Rental figures first.

0:37:550:37:57

If you were to rent this property as a three-bedroom house,

0:37:570:38:00

I would say it would be in the region of £600 per calendar month.

0:38:000:38:04

If you were to rent it as a four-bedroom property, converting the garage,

0:38:040:38:07

it would probably be in the region of £650 per calendar month.

0:38:070:38:12

And what about the sales market?

0:38:120:38:14

If you renovated the property and kept it as a three-bedroom property,

0:38:140:38:18

I would envisage it in the region of £140,000.

0:38:180:38:23

If you were to convert the garage, say, into a bedroom,

0:38:230:38:26

and make it a four-bedroom property,

0:38:260:38:28

it could be in the region of £150,000.

0:38:280:38:31

You know what? I do like the potential with this project.

0:38:310:38:35

Not least the layout options you've got on the ground floor -

0:38:350:38:38

you've also got that pretty big garage, as well,

0:38:380:38:41

which you can do with what you want.

0:38:410:38:44

So, let's go to the auction house and find out who fancied it.

0:38:440:38:46

Lot 78, £80,000 to start that one.

0:38:500:38:53

80,000?

0:38:530:38:55

70,000, then.

0:38:550:38:57

60, then. 60 I'm bid there, I'll take 65, sir, can I?

0:38:570:39:01

65. 70, sir?

0:39:010:39:03

Plenty of interest in this one.

0:39:030:39:05

We rejoin bidding at £99,000.

0:39:050:39:08

99, yes, 100, sir.

0:39:080:39:10

100, 101. 100 is there.

0:39:100:39:11

You are out now at the back, you're out, both seated.

0:39:110:39:15

At £100,000, first time.

0:39:150:39:17

Second time. Third and very last time.

0:39:190:39:21

It's yours, sir. 64, thank you very much.

0:39:210:39:24

With that successful bid of 100 grand were couple Nigel and Gail.

0:39:250:39:30

Nigel is a HGV driver,

0:39:300:39:32

and he and Gail are taking their

0:39:320:39:34

first steps into the property market.

0:39:340:39:37

I needed to find out if their

0:39:370:39:39

journey was going to be a long-distance one or not.

0:39:390:39:42

Nigel, nice to meet you.

0:39:420:39:43

-Hi, there.

-Gail, nice to meet you, too.

0:39:430:39:45

-Hi.

-Well done, guys, this is now your house.

0:39:450:39:48

Yeah!

0:39:480:39:49

What made you want to go into property in the first place?

0:39:490:39:52

-Whose idea was it?

-Yours, yours.

0:39:520:39:54

-Well...

-You get the blame!

-I get the blame for it, yeah, yeah...

0:39:540:39:57

We've been together about two years now,

0:39:570:39:59

and we've got some money sitting in the bank and it's not earning any

0:39:590:40:03

interest, and I had thought about doing this before and thought,

0:40:030:40:07

"Yeah, let's go for it."

0:40:070:40:09

We thought we'd end up with

0:40:090:40:10

a smaller property, so when we saw this,

0:40:100:40:12

and it's quite big, we thought it was really, really good, wasn't it?

0:40:120:40:16

Both of us liked it. We've gone into some pretty wrecked houses,

0:40:160:40:19

-haven't we?

-Hey, not as bad as some of the ones I've seen!

0:40:190:40:22

I've seen some real bad ones, let me tell you.

0:40:220:40:24

Was that one of the things that you...

0:40:240:40:26

It's a good selling point, yeah.

0:40:260:40:28

Not a lot to do structurally.

0:40:280:40:30

-Yeah.

-But, obviously, you've got the general stuff to do,

0:40:300:40:33

like the kitchen and the bathroom.

0:40:330:40:35

But then, there's options for doing, say, like,

0:40:350:40:38

trying to make a room

0:40:380:40:39

out of the garage, possibly, downstairs shower...

0:40:390:40:41

Nigel's under a lot of pressure, because he's told me -

0:40:410:40:43

cos we've only been together two years -

0:40:430:40:45

he's very good at do-it-yourself and that sort of stuff,

0:40:450:40:47

so the pressure's all on, isn't it?

0:40:470:40:49

-Ah!

-Seems that way.

-Seems that way, exactly!

0:40:490:40:52

The heat is on Nigel,

0:40:520:40:53

and he'll have to impress his fiancee before the big day.

0:40:530:40:57

We're getting married in about five months.

0:40:570:40:59

Is that right?

0:40:590:41:01

Well, we are planning to at the minute,

0:41:010:41:02

it depends on how many arguments we have doing this!

0:41:020:41:06

-Oh, dear, oh, dear!

-It could go horribly wrong!

0:41:060:41:08

# Marry me

0:41:080:41:10

# Marry me, marry me... #

0:41:100:41:14

That is lovely. I'll start shopping for my suit, then!

0:41:140:41:16

Until then, the couple plan to do a lot of the work themselves,

0:41:160:41:20

with added help from friends and family.

0:41:200:41:22

Right, tell us about this place. What are your plans?

0:41:240:41:26

What are you going to do? How is it going to look?

0:41:260:41:29

Well, as you've probably seen,

0:41:290:41:31

that wall over there, towards the kitchen,

0:41:310:41:35

we're going to knock that down,

0:41:350:41:36

so then we are going to do a dining kitchen here, integrated appliances,

0:41:360:41:41

so just try and give it that little higher spec.

0:41:410:41:44

-Yeah.

-Um, bathroom, we're going to see what we can do with it.

0:41:440:41:48

Try and salvage a little bit, because, like,

0:41:480:41:50

the toilet and the sink look fairly good.

0:41:500:41:53

Whether the bath is OK, I don't know.

0:41:530:41:55

And just generally re-tile, new door,

0:41:550:41:58

and then new doors in the property itself.

0:41:580:42:01

So, that's inside, but there is the question about outside, and that tree.

0:42:010:42:06

It's stopping a lot of light and draining the soil of moisture.

0:42:060:42:11

Well, my thought process is, there's quite a few bushes,

0:42:110:42:14

so if we sort of get them under control,

0:42:140:42:16

that will let more light in.

0:42:160:42:18

It would be such a shame to lose - I'm a bit of a tree-lover.

0:42:180:42:21

I'm quite happy to...

0:42:210:42:22

But it doesn't seem to have damaged the garage,

0:42:220:42:24

-which is the first thing...

-No, true.

0:42:240:42:26

Well, it might be just far away...

0:42:260:42:29

-We're hoping.

-..without causing too much damage.

-We're hoping the roots have gone round!

0:42:290:42:32

Around the house and the garage, just for you guys!

0:42:320:42:35

Wishful thinking, maybe.

0:42:350:42:37

Roots can damage drains, cause movement and all sorts of issues,

0:42:370:42:42

so let's hope they are right and it doesn't impact on their 7-10 grand

0:42:420:42:45

budget. They are keeping two grand aside for the garage

0:42:450:42:49

conversion and hope to have the place ready for resale in three

0:42:490:42:52

months, but they are thinking long-term, too.

0:42:520:42:55

We don't want to borrow the money, so we want to, like,

0:42:550:42:58

just make a little bit of extra money, so we can buy the next one,

0:42:580:43:02

and then hopefully keep the odd one or two back for ourselves then,

0:43:020:43:05

then rent them out,

0:43:050:43:07

while still having the money to keep purchasing other ones.

0:43:070:43:09

OK. I think you chose wisely for your first property, well done,

0:43:090:43:14

whoever found it, whoever was responsible.

0:43:140:43:17

We were both responsible.

0:43:170:43:18

We've been looking for a long time, we've been to several options,

0:43:180:43:21

so we're not novice at going to the auction,

0:43:210:43:23

we've just not been lucky enough in getting one.

0:43:230:43:25

I like that you're sharing the load, you see,

0:43:250:43:27

this is a good relationship!

0:43:270:43:29

You're going to win together, you're going to lose together.

0:43:290:43:31

-Correct.

-Good on you. Listen, Nigel, good luck to you.

0:43:310:43:33

-Nice to have met you, Gail. Good luck.

-And you, thank you.

-All the best.

0:43:330:43:37

So, this is a brand-new venture for Nigel and Gail.

0:43:370:43:40

It's not exactly a new house,

0:43:400:43:42

but we'll definitely have a brand-new Mr and Mrs very soon.

0:43:420:43:46

Congratulations, guys.

0:43:460:43:48

Will this place remain a three-bedroom,

0:43:480:43:50

or will it become a four-bedroom?

0:43:500:43:52

We won't know that until we find out what's in that garage.

0:43:520:43:56

You can find out if you stay tuned.

0:43:560:43:58

Timescale, budgets, deadlines,

0:44:020:44:05

there's a lot to think about in the old property game.

0:44:050:44:08

Yes, things don't always go to plan,

0:44:080:44:10

and I'm sure even experienced property developers would agree with

0:44:100:44:14

-me on that one.

-Yes, have our two remaining buyers got it right,

0:44:140:44:17

or has it all gone in the wrong direction? Let's find out.

0:44:170:44:20

We're going back now to Tredegar in South East Wales, where, earlier,

0:44:210:44:25

I saw this brownfield site.

0:44:250:44:27

It had a few issues, like a tree preservation order,

0:44:270:44:31

and an overage clause,

0:44:310:44:32

meaning that any added value to the land as a result of planning

0:44:320:44:36

permission being granted had to be split with the vendor.

0:44:360:44:39

It could amount to a significant amount of money,

0:44:410:44:44

and as long as you factor that into your thought processes, that's fine,

0:44:440:44:47

but to find out suddenly,

0:44:470:44:48

as you are about to sell all your properties for loads of money,

0:44:480:44:51

that you have to give 50% back, that would be bad.

0:44:510:44:54

This 0.9-acre site was bought for a construction company whose managing

0:44:560:45:01

director, Darren, I met on site to discuss his purchase,

0:45:010:45:04

originally guided at 100,000 to 120,000,

0:45:040:45:07

which was reduced to 58,000 and finally bought for 59,000.

0:45:070:45:12

What attracted you to this site?

0:45:130:45:16

A very late phone call before the auction.

0:45:160:45:18

-What?

-We had a phone call an hour before the auction.

0:45:180:45:21

-No!

-I think we were made aware at 4pm, and by sort of 5:15pm the hammer had gone down.

0:45:210:45:26

Darren's original timescale was 12 months for the planning and 40 weeks

0:45:270:45:31

to build. Having got planning permission within six months,

0:45:310:45:34

there were further delays due to its stipulations.

0:45:340:45:37

We had an ecology condition on the planning,

0:45:400:45:43

which meant we had to do surveys for reptiles and insects on the site.

0:45:430:45:48

Unfortunately, at that time of the year,

0:45:480:45:50

the temperatures were below 10 degrees,

0:45:500:45:52

so we had to wait three months until the ground temperatures lifted,

0:45:520:45:57

and then we could do an accurate survey to see if there were any

0:45:570:46:00

species of interest on the site, prior to commencement.

0:46:000:46:03

Also at the planning stage,

0:46:030:46:05

Darren tackled the overage clause in

0:46:050:46:07

the light of their previous experience.

0:46:070:46:10

So, we were able to agree the overage value very quickly,

0:46:100:46:12

based on the data that we had done previously.

0:46:120:46:15

But it is an area that would-be developers need to be very aware of,

0:46:150:46:20

if they are entering into developments with overage clauses

0:46:200:46:23

built into the contracts.

0:46:230:46:25

With the uplift value from planning permission agreed upfront,

0:46:250:46:28

Darren worked out that each plot of land was going to cost just £7,000

0:46:280:46:32

per house, but the planning department did cut back its original

0:46:320:46:37

15-unit plan to 14.

0:46:370:46:40

Darren also commissioned a ground survey.

0:46:400:46:42

The survey result meant a different kind of foundation was needed.

0:46:420:46:46

Unlike the traditional strip foundation that most people would be

0:46:480:46:51

familiar with, we've got raft foundations, which are heavily reinforced -

0:46:510:46:54

the property that sits on the raft is not affected by any ground

0:46:540:46:58

movement in later years.

0:46:580:46:59

Establishing the different site levels,

0:46:590:47:01

reinforcing them and excavating is a costly business just to get out of

0:47:010:47:06

the ground. It obviously affects the bottom line,

0:47:060:47:09

and Darren thinks it is an area they could have improved on.

0:47:090:47:12

Well, my engineer tells me I'm wrong,

0:47:130:47:15

but every time I look at a lorry full of muck departing the site,

0:47:150:47:19

I think that's money going out of the gate,

0:47:190:47:22

so I think next time we look at the development,

0:47:220:47:24

we look at the ground levels far more closely than we have to date.

0:47:240:47:28

But the site is now a haven of activity.

0:47:280:47:30

So, as you see the site today, we're working round anticlockwise.

0:47:330:47:37

These are the first seven units that are taken up now to second fix

0:47:370:47:39

stage. So, roofs are on, windows are on, they are watertight.

0:47:390:47:43

And we are now starting

0:47:430:47:44

the painting, tiling, kitchen-fitting, etc.

0:47:440:47:47

This unit on my right is coming up to wall plate,

0:47:470:47:50

so in about two weeks' time, we expect to see the roof on that,

0:47:500:47:52

then we start rendering.

0:47:520:47:54

Over on the far right of the site, we've got the least-developed area,

0:47:540:47:57

where we are putting in precast units as a retaining structure.

0:47:570:48:01

Those will go in now over the next couple of weeks,

0:48:010:48:03

then we'll build the foundations,

0:48:030:48:04

and then we'll start completing those houses.

0:48:040:48:07

As soon as these two houses are up,

0:48:070:48:08

we'll start constructing the kerb lines and the front gardens to all

0:48:080:48:12

the properties, as we work our way out of the site.

0:48:120:48:14

It turned out there were two oak trees protected by TPOs.

0:48:140:48:18

One of them was in danger of falling into the road,

0:48:180:48:21

so permission was given to remove it.

0:48:210:48:23

The remaining oak has been trimmed and treated and it's in good health,

0:48:240:48:27

and that will sit as a main feature of the development once completed.

0:48:270:48:31

They've also agreed a tree-planting strategy with the planners to

0:48:310:48:34

enhance the site.

0:48:340:48:36

To reduce the hum of the substation,

0:48:360:48:39

an acoustic fence will be erected around it.

0:48:390:48:42

The nearest house has been designed to be five metres away.

0:48:420:48:45

The original timescale allowed for 12 months' planning

0:48:470:48:49

and a 40-week build.

0:48:490:48:52

Whilst the time on site will be a calendar year,

0:48:520:48:54

we were probably 15 months in the pre-planning stage.

0:48:540:48:57

So, slightly longer than anticipated,

0:48:570:49:00

but only by a small amount.

0:49:000:49:01

Darren's initial build budget was 1.5 million.

0:49:010:49:04

How does it look now that seven out of the 14 properties are nearing

0:49:040:49:08

-completion?

-The spend to date on the site is just over a million pounds.

0:49:080:49:14

A large proportion of the spend is in the ground,

0:49:140:49:17

but as we speak at the moment,

0:49:170:49:18

we are bang on track to where we thought we would be,

0:49:180:49:21

both in time and expenditure.

0:49:210:49:23

Darren has a fixed contract with his housing-association client,

0:49:240:49:28

but is intending to take the company into the private-build sector.

0:49:280:49:32

So, we called in an estate agent to get some valuations for sale.

0:49:330:49:37

For the two-bed properties,

0:49:370:49:39

I would expect them to be in the region of £115,000 to £125,000.

0:49:390:49:44

And for the three-bed properties,

0:49:440:49:46

I would be expecting between £130,000 and £140,000.

0:49:460:49:51

To attain values in excess of 120,000 to 135,000,

0:49:510:49:56

it is good for all parties concerned.

0:49:560:49:58

And for the bungalow?

0:49:580:50:00

I would expect the bungalow probably

0:50:000:50:02

to be in the region of £160,000 to £170,000.

0:50:020:50:05

The bungalow would be at the 150, 160 mark,

0:50:050:50:09

because there's not a great deal of those in the area,

0:50:090:50:11

so I think the Housing Association will be very pleased with those

0:50:110:50:15

valuations.

0:50:150:50:16

There's a new development to the specification here.

0:50:180:50:21

These red nozzles will be appearing in all new-build Welsh properties.

0:50:210:50:26

One of the interesting things of this particular development is,

0:50:290:50:32

we have introduced sprinklers into all the properties,

0:50:320:50:35

as a requirement for new-build housing now within Wales.

0:50:350:50:38

Keeping up with best practice and legislation is all part of the steep

0:50:380:50:43

learning curve developers ride.

0:50:430:50:46

We will be taking all the learning experience from our last two

0:50:460:50:49

developments onto the next development,

0:50:490:50:51

which will be our bespoke housing for private sale.

0:50:510:50:54

Any reflections on the project?

0:50:540:50:57

We were sat reading the legal pack as the auction progressed,

0:50:570:51:00

on the phone to the solicitor when it came for the bids to go into the

0:51:000:51:04

auctioneer. So, perhaps not the right way to do it,

0:51:040:51:07

but in this instance, it worked well for us.

0:51:070:51:09

Well, at least you did read it!

0:51:090:51:11

Let's head back to the Warwickshire village of Hartshill,

0:51:150:51:18

where I saw this three-bed end-terrace property

0:51:180:51:21

guided at £90,000+.

0:51:210:51:23

Things were looking pretty promising in the form of a downstairs toilet

0:51:230:51:27

and a spacious living accommodation.

0:51:270:51:30

And on closer inspection,

0:51:300:51:32

a false wall meant ample opportunity was knocking for some open-plan

0:51:320:51:36

living. So, you've got

0:51:360:51:38

a false wall here connecting these two rooms together,

0:51:380:51:41

and this is the end wall, so that's the end of the house.

0:51:410:51:44

OK, that's strange, because there's nothing on the other side of this.

0:51:480:51:52

Why does that sound like that? HOLLOW KNOCKING

0:51:520:51:55

Now, that's confused me.

0:51:550:51:57

# I hear knock, knock

0:51:570:51:59

# I think she's back for more... #

0:51:590:52:02

Less confusing was the upstairs layout,

0:52:020:52:04

which boasted a huge bathroom and three good-sized bedrooms,

0:52:040:52:07

although some of the decor was a little "ruff"!

0:52:070:52:11

Outside, the garage was under lock and key,

0:52:110:52:14

but the towering oak in the front did have me wondering if it could

0:52:140:52:18

cause structural damage to the house.

0:52:180:52:21

Come auction day, it was couple Nigel and Gail who picked up the

0:52:210:52:24

property for 100 grand.

0:52:240:52:25

While it was their first venture into development,

0:52:250:52:28

they already had lots of plans.

0:52:280:52:30

After all, Nigel was - allegedly - a dab hand at DIY.

0:52:300:52:34

Obviously, you've got the general stuff to do,

0:52:340:52:37

like your kitchen and your bathroom, but then, there's options for doing,

0:52:370:52:41

say, trying to make a room out of the garage, possibly,

0:52:410:52:44

-downstairs shower...

-Nigel's under a lot of pressure,

0:52:440:52:46

because he's told me - cos we've only been together two years -

0:52:460:52:49

he's very good at do-it-yourself and that sort of stuff,

0:52:490:52:51

so the pressure's all on, isn't it?

0:52:510:52:53

-Ah!

-Seems that way.

-Seems that way, exactly!

0:52:530:52:56

With a 7-10 grand budget and an additional two grand in the event

0:52:560:53:01

of converting the garage,

0:53:010:53:02

they were ready to get cracking and get it done in three months...

0:53:020:53:07

..with good reason, as they were getting married in five.

0:53:070:53:10

So would this house be ready to go back on the market before Nigel and

0:53:100:53:14

Gail get hitched?

0:53:140:53:15

We're back just under four months later.

0:53:160:53:20

# Cos true love lasts forever

0:53:200:53:22

# And now we're back together

0:53:220:53:25

# As if he never met her

0:53:250:53:28

# So looking back I'm glad I crashed the wedding... #

0:53:280:53:32

What a transformation.

0:53:320:53:33

Nigel and Gail have opened up the kitchen and dining room to make way

0:53:330:53:38

for some open-plan, modern living.

0:53:380:53:40

The front room is fresh,

0:53:430:53:45

and vertical radiators are a real space-saver.

0:53:450:53:48

The addition of a shower in the downstairs toilet is a great idea.

0:53:540:53:58

And upstairs, the master bathroom is a thing of beauty.

0:53:580:54:02

In fact, the whole upstairs is looking brand-spanking-new.

0:54:020:54:06

For first-timers, they have really pulled it out of the bag.

0:54:060:54:10

So, was it as straightforward as they first anticipated?

0:54:100:54:13

It wouldn't have been so bad,

0:54:130:54:15

but when we started stripping the walls, cos we thought, "Oh,

0:54:150:54:18

"we'll strip all the walls, get the wallpaper off,"

0:54:180:54:20

that's when we realised how bad the walls were.

0:54:200:54:24

So, we ended up virtually re-plastering the whole house.

0:54:240:54:27

So, that was something we really hadn't banked on.

0:54:270:54:30

In addition to paying a plasterer,

0:54:300:54:33

another unforeseen job was getting a plumber in to install a brand-new

0:54:330:54:37

combi boiler. Those additional costs meant that converting the garage at

0:54:370:54:41

this point wasn't financially viable.

0:54:410:54:44

But on the bright side, they did manage to get it open.

0:54:440:54:47

And I can't help but notice that something outside has remained

0:54:470:54:50

-the same, too.

-The tree is fine, as in structural for the house.

0:54:500:54:55

I mean, the garage is the furthest thing forward on the house,

0:54:550:54:59

and there's no damage inside the garage, the concrete floor,

0:54:590:55:02

the brickwork on the outside is fine, so, luckily, the roots seem to

0:55:020:55:06

be going in the right direction - away from the house.

0:55:060:55:10

The couple have also been led to believe that the tree is under a

0:55:120:55:16

preservation order and is part of a boundary line, so it's staying put.

0:55:160:55:21

However, from the sounds of it,

0:55:210:55:23

what has grown roots is that 7-10 grand budget.

0:55:230:55:27

The budget wasn't too bad, but then,

0:55:270:55:29

when you take into account the full boiler system we had done,

0:55:290:55:34

and all the work that involved, the new radiators downstairs,

0:55:340:55:38

-we came in around 14,000.

-Yeah.

0:55:380:55:42

A £4,000 overspend isn't ideal,

0:55:420:55:45

but it's their first time and they have accomplished loads.

0:55:450:55:48

Is that because Nigel lived up to his handyman reputation?

0:55:480:55:52

When Nigel and I got together, he kept saying he was really good at

0:55:520:55:54

do-it-yourself, and I was a little bit nervous about it,

0:55:540:55:57

but I think he's really done a good job, and done all the tiles,

0:55:570:56:00

and I've been quite impressed. I did wonder whether you...

0:56:000:56:03

-Thank you!

-..whether you'd, you know...

0:56:030:56:06

Yeah, your painting's not been too bad.

0:56:060:56:08

I think you've got away with it this time, Nigel!

0:56:110:56:14

But what will two local estate agents think of the couple's

0:56:140:56:17

£114,000 investment?

0:56:170:56:20

Let's hear from the agent who saw it before the work started.

0:56:200:56:23

It's transformed out of recognition from the first time I saw it.

0:56:240:56:27

Great kitchen, great bathroom -

0:56:280:56:32

they are the two main selling points of any property.

0:56:320:56:35

And they've done a great job of both of those.

0:56:350:56:37

On initial inspection, some great, spacious accommodation,

0:56:370:56:42

clearly a lot of attention to detail with some high-specification

0:56:420:56:45

fixtures and fittings. Very spacious, so,

0:56:450:56:49

great for a young family looking to grow into the property,

0:56:490:56:52

and definitely in a quiet cul-de-sac location.

0:56:520:56:55

Plenty of plus points there,

0:56:550:56:57

but will there be a positive number in Nigel and Gail's bank account,

0:56:570:57:01

should they sell the property on?

0:57:010:57:03

I believe that the property would fetch £145,000 to £150,000.

0:57:030:57:08

The open market value of this property in its current condition

0:57:080:57:11

would be £155,000.

0:57:110:57:13

-BOTH: Wow!

-Wow.

0:57:130:57:15

That's about what I was hoping.

0:57:150:57:18

I actually thought, um, that we'd get 140, maybe 145 if we were lucky.

0:57:180:57:25

-That's brilliant.

-That's good.

0:57:250:57:27

It's definitely sell for me.

0:57:270:57:28

And me, yeah, we'll sell. And then, we may do it again!

0:57:280:57:32

Ooh!

0:57:320:57:34

Well, the potential profit, minus taxes and fees, of £41,000,

0:57:350:57:40

certainly gives them the capital to invest again.

0:57:400:57:43

But before they hit the auction house,

0:57:430:57:45

they're going to need to hit the aisle.

0:57:450:57:47

Good luck!

0:57:470:57:49

Well, in a couple of months or so, you know, we'll be getting married.

0:57:490:57:53

Hopefully do a bit of skiing in the New Year.

0:57:530:57:56

And then just see if we can get a nice holiday now,

0:57:560:57:59

because we've sort of forfeited it this year.

0:57:590:58:01

So, yeah, a holiday.

0:58:010:58:03

Just get a bit of life back, I think,

0:58:030:58:06

-back to seeing some family.

-Yeah.

0:58:060:58:09

We hope today's stories have given you a few tips and the ins and outs

0:58:130:58:17

of what to do in property developing.

0:58:170:58:18

Maybe they've inspired you to come up with some ideas.

0:58:180:58:21

Whatever you do, don't duck away from your responsibilities!

0:58:210:58:24

Who knows? It might be you we see next time,

0:58:240:58:26

bidding on Homes Under The Hammer.

0:58:260:58:28

-Bye-bye.

-Bye-bye.

-Goodbye.

0:58:280:58:30

A chalet bungalow in a bad state of repair in East Peckham in Kent, a piece of land ripe for a housing development in Tredegar in Wales and an end-terrace in Hartshill in Warwickshire bought by an engaged couple are all sold at auction. Martin Roberts, Dion Dublin and Martel Maxwell meet the new owners and find out if all the work will be worth it in the end as none of the projects run smoothly.