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Property – How to buy your dream home affordably

If you think about it, buying your dream home is about more than just finding the right house; it must also be in the right location, on the right plot and at a price you can afford. A common solution has been to buy a plot of land in the right location and then build a house on it that ticks all the boxes. However, suitable sized plots don’t come on the market very often in Sutton Coldfield and, when they do, they can be very expensive.

More and more people are buying an existing property that is in the right location and on a suitable plot and then dramatically remodelling it. An example I found in Surrey was a four bedroom house with an attractive façade that was extended to become a very desirable eight bedroom home. The combined cost of the purchase and building work came in at £1.3 million and the owner now has the house of his dreams with a market value of £1.6 million. A more modest example in Nottinghamshire saw an unappealing 1970’s four bedroom detached home converted into a very striking, architect designed house. The design makes far more effective use of the internal space. The original house cost £260,000, the building work came in at £100,000 and the finished item is worth £420,000.

There are a few things to beware of. It is crucial to have an excellent design – pick your architect carefully! Nor can you cut corners on the building work or the standard of finish and, of course, these things cost money. If the property is located in a conservation area, getting planning permission can be an issue.   Finally, you need to remember that VAT will be payable on any building work you undertake whereas you don’t pay VAT when buying a house. But, if none of these things presents a problem, this is an excellent way to acquire the house of your dreams, not to mention making a profit in the process.

Craig Brown
Estate Agent