Buying a Fixer-Up Property as a Second Home

by | May 4, 2021 | Home Tips, News | 0 comments

For anyone thinking of buying a second property this year, there’s an option not many consider but is worth looking into. Purchasing a house that needs work gives you an exciting opportunity to bag a bargain. Additionally, you’ll have a project to immerse yourself in, letting you live out the DIY daytime TV dream.

This won’t be everyone’s preference, but we think it’s worth weighing up the benefits before rejecting the idea. You’ll essentially have a blank canvas to work on, possibly with plenty of additional outside space to play around with. Anthony Ward Thomas has experience in this department, and our range of services will see you through the whole development exercise.

Finding a Bargain and Creating the Perfect Second Home –

The purpose of this article is to explore another option for anyone who’s considering purchasing a second home. Most people go for a premade home for an additional property, and this is fine if you want to have something ready to move into. But others want house they can rebuild as their own and renovate extensively.

For those who are on the fence about this, what’s the main benefit of doing this? There’s no right or wrong answer here; it really depends on if you can allocate enough time to taking on this project. It’s important to know why you’re doing this before committing to anything. You’ll soon find out that this is an involved process, with plenty of planning and elbow grease necessary.

If you’re doing this to flip the property afterwards, it’s more a business move and will need thorough costings. It’s a less emotional undertaking, but you still have a chance to apply your style. For more personal projects, you have the opportunity to be creative and double-down on your taste and décor. This is where you can delve into Grand Designs for inspiration, and fans can re-watch the show for research.

You can put together a unique home with innovative features, and an example might be a solar-powered hot tub or eco-friendly cladding. For major renovations, you’ll need to consult with an architect and possibly a builder. We’ll cover this in detail, as well as other vital things to consider before you start.

Anthony Ward Thomas’s Favourite Locations –

Using the Trovit website, we did some preliminary searches for potential renovation properties. From there, we applied our previous experience against each area to see which ones might be a good fit for our customers. The results below list each specific location that has suitable fixer-up homes. We’re adding in some train travel times to London as well, for those who want to leave the car behind.

Canterbury, Kent:

Distance to London – 1 hour and 37 minutes

Average house price – £640,043.36

Renovation Properties in Canterbury – click here.

Example property price – £515,000

Guildford, Surrey:

Distance to London – 1 hour and 6 minutes

Average house price – £900,301.98

Renovation Properties in Guildford – click here.

Example property price – £639,950

Newquay, Devon:

Distance to London – 5 hours and 7 minutes

Average house price – £558,869.51

Renovation Properties in Newquay – click here.

Example property price – £650,000

Bournemouth, Dorset:

Distance to London – 2 hours and 23 minutes

Average house price – £575,000

Renovation Properties in Bournemouth – click here. 

Example property price – £460,000

Wherever possible, the above example properties are four-bed detached houses, but it wasn’t always possible. The only area where the renovation property exceeded the average house price is Newquay, but this was due to favourable factors for this example. You’ll need to be careful when comparing and costing – we’ll go into more details about enlisting an estate agent later in this article.

Using Auctions to Scout Fixer-Up Properties –

In addition to Trovit and other online resources, there is another avenue bargain-hunters have at their disposal. Auctions are an excellent way of finding properties well below their final market value. The caveat being they’re often in varying levels of renovation needs. The good news is, you’ll find at least one auction for houses per month in most cities or counties.

Every auctioneer has a different process, but most establish an accommodating selling process. This might include sales packs and detailed information for each lot that is available before the auction. We would suggest you contact the organiser to request any preparatory packs ahead of the auction day. Wherever possible, attend open house viewings.

It might be wise to consult with an estate agent as well to get them to put in some more thorough research. Have them do group together auctions per area and list together potential viewings. The advantage of doing this is the agent’s ability to hold a current valuation (on the property’s current state) and a hypothetical one for its ideal market value.

Tips on Pricing the Project Thoroughly –

There are two approaches to renovating a property, and you’ll need to work out how much work you’re doing. If you plan on taking this on yourself, there’s a time cost to consider. You’ll base this on your current hourly salary and the potential to take days off work. The other option is to hire a professional builder and developer.

This is where the potential of value for money comes into play, or to spin it the other way, the possibility of losing money. You might find the ideal building that ticks all the boxes, only to discover multiple unseen issues, and it turns into a money pit. And this usually happens when people do the majority of the work themselves.

The objective way to do this is to cost out both options in as much detail as possible to make an informed decision. Get quotes for materials and professionals for every service, then factor in your hourly value. You’ll then have a better idea of what works best for you by the end of this costing exercise. This will help you finalise your decision on how to proceed.

Research Your New Home and Location –

By now, you’ll start to realise how involved this can get, and it requires a lot of attention and focus. But it’s intuitive to do plenty of research on the location as well, not just the building. People miss some points when they start house-hunting, so we’ll go over a few of them in more detail throughout this section.

Transport links are an excellent place to start, especially if you’re still spending most of your time in London. That’s why we included some travel times earlier, so it’s vital you note the available train stations. Season ticket prices might factor into your final decision, with most services offering discounts if you’re looking for value. Or first-class options for those who want to travel in style and comfort.

Local amenities and entertainment play a huge part in integrating into a new area. To get a better idea of what’s on offer, you should visit these areas a couple of times. This will give you a feel for the place and find a favourite restaurant to frequent. Then there are practical things like healthcare and schools to contend with. You can find all this information online, but it’s worth noting that first-hand experience is crucial.

Removals and Self Storage Services –

At Anthony Ward Thomas, we do everything to a higher standard because our customers need us to. In the thirty-plus years since the company began, our mission statement is the same: quality is the most important aspect. We take the ordinary removals services and align them with our customers’ needs, basing this on constant feedback and evaluation.

The following removals packages are our primary range of services and will cover most moving requirements:

Small Moves – our version of a man and van service. This package includes two of our removal’s team members and a van with state-of-the-art equipment and tools. Perfect for removal’s jobs in busy areas and smaller volume of items.

Large Removals – this covers every size of removal up from man with a van. Anthony Ward Thomas has a fleet of vehicles at our disposal. We’ll assign team members to suit the total volume of items per load.

Household Storage – you can create more space in your home by using this package, which comes with the option of a container unit for long-term needs. 

Self Storage – this package has no restrictions on access during our business hours, whereas container storage has limitations. We would suggest self storage to anyone who require to store for short-term periods. 

Anthony Ward Thomas – Helping You Restore a Second Home –

We hope that this blog has given our followers some food for thought and an additional option when looking for a second property. While there’s a degree of hard work by choosing this route, having more choice is never a bad thing. And by working with us, you’ll have all the assistance necessary to make this type of project a success.

Anthony Ward Thomas moves hundreds of people to the countryside and destinations all over the UK every month. Achieving the highest standard of customer service is at the foundation of every service we provide. We’re London’s number one removals and storage provider, offering a range of premium packages you won’t find anywhere else.

If you want to book London’s prestige removals and storage company for your next relocation, contact us today. We’re the right choice to move you into your second property.