Thu 24 Sep 2020

Top tips when buying a period property

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Looking for a charming, historic home?

Period properties in villages are becoming more popular for city buyers who want to escape urban life. Here’s what to consider when buying an older home.

Londoners are looking to get out of the smoke to head to the countryside according to new data revealed by Rightmove. During June and July of 2020, London buyer enquiries about moving to villages rose by 144% in comparison to the same period of 2019. A similar pattern is echoed across the UK, with only Leicester experiencing a higher interest in moving to towns instead of rural locations. Of course, the pull of village life can be attributed to the challenges of spending lockdown in an urban property. So, if you’ve spent the pandemic longing to live in a charming, period property in the country, then now is the time to make your move.

Character homes

Older properties tend to be those built before the Second World War, and you’ll find them to be filled with plenty of character. Your dream home might even come with a little land and an outbuilding or two if you’re lucky! But unfortunately, older buildings have also had more time to develop longstanding problems according to estate agents in Brentwood. So, if you’re on the hunt for a charming period home, consider these challenges.

Thatched roofs

Thatched homes are absolutely delightful and are the envy of all passers-by. Roofs made from thatch can last for as long as 90 years if installed correctly, although it can be difficult to find a tradesman with the necessary skills to repair or replace one these days. You should also be aware that thatched roofs are more of a fire risk, so will increase your insurance premiums if you choose this type of property.

Barn conversions

If you’ve dreamed of converting an old derelict barn into your own bespoke home, then this could be the perfect solution. As well as barns, you might also be interested in converting old train stations, hospitals or schools. None of these will be cheap projects by any means. Once you’ve found a building you wish to convert, you’ll need to check that planning permission is available for your conversion project. You should also expect to pay around 50% of the barn’s value to convert into your home.

Listed buildings

There are around half a million listed buildings in the UK, which were mainly built before 1840. A building that is listed is protected by UK property law, due to its history. This might include a famous person having lived there, but is more likely to do with the age, rarity or architecture of the building. It can be difficult to make alterations to a listed building and you’ll need to apply to your local council to gain a thorough understanding of what is and isn’t possible.

Once you have found a period property you’d like to call your home, you’ll need to have a full structural survey carried out to ensure a good condition of the roof, walls, drainage and foundations of the building. The survey will also check for the presence of problems such as damp. If the survey is clear, then there’s no reason why you can’t say goodbye to city life and look forward to living in a charming, history-filled property in the country.

If you're looking to purchase a period property, Balgores are here to help. With our multiple offices across Essex and Kent, we're sure to have your perfect period property that you're dreaming of! Contact your nearest Balgores office by clicking here.

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