Fashionably un-modernised is right up my street

Once upon a time in West London there was always a skip and scaffolding outside at least one of your neighbour’s properties; the booming house prices of the last decade have kept a generation of local builders in business, just check out the local cafes in the morning as they queue up for their bacon sarnies. When you ask them to tell you the last time they weren’t busy, the answer will be sometime in the 90s.

Let’s face it, with little other safe bets in the market to bet on, property has become big business. That’s the mantra that has been peddled by TV shows such as ‘Property Ladder’, ‘Location, Location, Location’ and ‘Homes Under the Hammer’ which have fuelled buyers interest in buying un-modernised homes. 

The rush of the big project, the blank canvas which a buyer can stamp with their own identity, and the enviable thought of flipping a property for a profit is what keeps viewers tuned in. When I started out as an estate agent in the 90s, it was only the cash buyer or property developer who could afford to take on the risks of a dilapidated property, but how times have changed! Un-modernised houses are just not sold in the auction room now where a quick sale is guaranteed, the houses in need of major improvements achieve best results by private treaty from the high street estate agent.

Now it’s common knowledge that buying an un-modernised property or properties which can be improved, extended, and modernised does add monetary value. If you are increasing the internal living space of a home you are inevitably increasing the end value of the property as the local market stays strong. This means that any property that is not already extended or improved has an unrealised profit to an investor and I have found that the properties that need the most work often achieve the best results and secure the very best buyers and prices.

I don’t believe it, but some buyers are said to make up their minds within eight seconds of viewing a house and then spend the next two minutes confirming whether the gut reaction is right or wrong. But when viewing a house in need of major works the process requires more than the first or second viewing. Buying an un-modernised home takes  nerves of steel, excellent planning and logistics, the right builder, architect, planning consultant and, of course, the right estate agent.  

When you’re buying an un-modernised property, ideally you will have a large deposit and can add the costs of the future work to your mortgage without a problem. You may require deeper pockets than most, and the works will often take longer than your builder projects which means you may foot the bill of renting your temporary flat longer than you may like. Here are Horton and Garton, we are currently selling several fairly un-modernised houses so if you want to know more, or if you already own a property that needs to be brought kicking and screaming into the 21st century, call the local experts!