Homes Under the Hammer buyers transform 16th century home into ‘fantastic’ space for £47k

Visiting a home in Needham Market, just outside Ipswich, Homes Under the Hammer presenter, Martin Roberts said: “Today’s property has a historic feel, reputedly dating back to the 1500s. So it’s a really, really cute little spot and the high street is just at the end of the lane that the property I’m here to see is situated in.”

The characterful 16th-century cottage was mid-terrace with a guide price of £70,000 plus and it had three bedrooms.

Martin stepped inside to take a further look. He said: “Something tells me it’s going to have character, this place. The nice thing is it hasn’t been touched too much.”

Stepping straight into the living room, the property was extremely dated and needed complete renovation. The living room had a traditional fireplace along with cream wallpaper.

The Homes Under the Hammer presenter said the floor was very uneven and he doubted it was damp-proof so needed to be replaced by the new owners.

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To the rear of the property was a room which would be the kitchen, but it currently just had an oven in it. The walls were pink and there were major sides of damp.

Off from the kitchen was a tiny shower room which Martin didn’t like the look of. In the front room was a small door which led up an incredibly narrow half-timbered staircase to the bedrooms.

In the main bedroom Martin said there were “some absolutely beautiful features”. He added: “Look at this floor. Floorboards made of elm, at a guess. But this room itself has got a few issues, the roof being one of them, and then, the second bedroom.”

The second bedroom was down some narrow stairs with an angled roof which was caving it. Overall, the property needed complete renovation and maybe even some reconfiguration.

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Who purchased the property when it went to auction? The successful bid of £100,000 came from Steve, who came along to the house with John, his friend and business partner.

The business partners said they were going to strip the house back, seeing what’s underneath the wall before starting major work on it. They also had plans to create a bathroom upstairs, something which a lot of buyers look for these days.

As the home is in a conservation area, there may be issues with planning applications and so the duo have given themselves a generous timescale of six months. They also had a healthy budget of between £35,000 to £40,000 for the renovation.

Homes Under the Hammer revisited Steve and John six months later once the house had been completed.

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Martin said: “Well, this is a delight. Together with their architect, John and Steve have opened out the ground floor to create a spacious and bright living room and kitchen and downstairs loo.

“The staircase has been rescued from the gloom by removing the enclosing wall and the period timbers have been given a modern makeover.”

Upstairs, the layout had been changed to accommodate a bathroom. They did this by adding in a dormer roof to enable them to still have three bedrooms.

Martin added: “Some original features have had to be sacrificed, and as I suspected, the quirky fireplace became surplus to requirements.”

Steve and John still had to renovate the garden, despite going over their budget, spending £47,000 in the end. Steve said: “Where we got caught out, I think, was skip hires, which really took us by surprise. Some of the structural elements cost us a little bit more, because it needed to be done, but I think it was worth it, to be honest.”

A local property expert visited the home to share how much it could be worth now. The estate agent said: “I think the changes they’ve made are incredible.

“They’ve opened it right up, the space is fantastic, much more usable, much more friendly. The property would sell for in the region of £250,000 to £260,000.”

Taking the higher valuation of £260,000 means the property owners have managed to boost the home’s value by a huge £160,000.