From Barn To Home

From Barn To Home

Martin Powell, of Heron Way Consultants Ltd, discusses how he helped a family realise their dream home

This year has been a tough year for property development with a lack of funding and buyers hard to find due to restricted mortgage funding in the wider market. But enough of doom and gloom as you must also have survived in the industry to be reading this newsletter.

I thought hard about what to write for this first article and decided in the spirit of Christmas on a positive good news story.

In August this year I went to a farm site to see a farmer in Worcestershire (which was a response to a mail shot that we did from Barbour ABI data).

The site consisted of a farmyard with barns, two of which had planning permission for residential conversion it was discussed that one was to be kept and the other developed and sold to a couple that lived on the yard in a caravan, who had already paid a £50k deposit.

However the site was so tied up with the bank that everything would be down to the bank's timescale. So after the meeting I left thinking that there would be little chance of a deal that could be easily done.

The start of November I had a call from the farmer who had Mrs R with him that lived in the caravan, who had agreed to buy the one barn in its current condition from the Farmer for £150k. I arranged to go to the caravan with my Surveyor/QS on the 7th November.

On 7th November we all met in Mr and Mrs R’s caravan on the site and found that they had been living in the caravan for two and a half years with their two young children and this barn was their dream home.

Mr and Mrs R had another £50k available in cash to put in the project so where looking for around £50k to complete the purchase of the barn and build costs of around £175k. They also had a good credit rating and an income of around £75kpa. The barn when complete would be worth around £450k. Mr and Mrs R stated the long list of various lenders that had said no due to the build type, they where living on site, they had no development experience, the state of the barn, and a whole host of others too long to mention.

On the 16th November I obtained a formal legal offer for £250k from one of my lenders with an initial advance of £85k and the remainder being released in stages which will be signed off by my QS. The completion date for the purchase has been set for this Friday, which as promised to Mr and Mrs R means they can start work on the barn before Christmas.

Martin Powell
Heron Way Consultants Ltd
O1454 326892

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