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Alternative Homes

ALTERNATE HOMES

With market uncertantly many people are chosing to live their lives in alternative accommodation. Equally many want to break the mould and may pay more than conventional homes to live a somewhat different lifestyle.

Things to consider:

Canal/River Boats: Many may picture an idyllic lifestyle and for many it is. The sun on your back and a fishing rod in one hand and a shandy in the other. But if you aim to keep your land mobility cars need parking. Buying a boat is not difficult, you can even get specialist surveyors/engineers to inspect them, but perminant moorings could be harder to find? Are there, or will there be shops close at hand? Where do you dispose of your waste and sewerage? Without a permanent address credit and bank facilities may be difficult! But in this day and age with mobile internet/phones and digital TV you could even work from on board. When alls said and done in this day and age what better way to escape the rat race and get away from it all. 

Conversions: OK, so your grandfather use to say 'Close that door, you weren't born in a barn' BUT WHY NOT NOW LIVE IN ONE? Over the last 40 years we have seen a number of dissused farm buildings given a new lease of life. Conversions include redundant: Stables, Oasts, Water and Wind Mills, Lighthouses, Factories, Halls, Chapels, Churcold water millhes and Follies such as Nepolionic Martello Towers and Fortresses. Such buildings are normally in the heart of their former workplace, which may still be active and very much out the way. The former farm building may seem out the way, but don't moan when the farmers up at 6am in his tractor, he was there before you. The lighthouse may look stern and romantic, but the storms may keep you awake not to mention a lot of high painting. Many of these buildings will also be built in an unconventional way, ask the owner of a Martello Tower how much fun it was to drill through the 7-10ft solid walls, nevertheless who else can boast a canon on their roof. Conversions can offer the occupiers somewhere unique to live but beware this is normally cost reflected and there may be many restrictions and coverments attached. If considering buying one also check with the local authority the agent or your conveyancer whether the building is listed or in a conservation area. Additionally such buildings may be more controversal should you wish to extend, the viability of such alterations if important should firstly be clarified by your surveyor or architect with the local authority.

Park and Mobile Homes: Once merely holiday homes. Mobile and Park Homes have gained quite a following and away from Holiday Parks, many Parks offer full 12 month living entitlement. The dissadvantage with mobile homes is that in most cases you don't ever own the land that your home sits on. The home is classed as a chattel. Along with this comes ground rent normally paid monthly. As a home owner you do have a number of rights and both you and the site owner are governered by legal agreements and rulings. The Mobile Homes Act 1983 and other related Acts. Older homes especially will require more maintanence than bricks and mortar dwellings, but as a bonus a well presented and well maintained home should see market increase. Many Parks are situated in the country or coastal areas but different site owners will have their own occupant guidelines which may include minimun resident age in the instance of a retirement site, limitations to children and pets, some site owners may allow you to bring pets, but to not replace them when they're gone. Most buyers buy cash from the proceeds of a house sale but their are lenders out there that will provide finance, but be warned rates may be higher than a normal mortgage. Park Homes today are quite unrecognisable from their predecessors some 15-20 years ago. Insulation has got to high levels, most have CH, bricked under bases, pitched tiled roofs, quite luxurious fittings and even single/double garages. Basically a bungalow at probabally less than 1/2 the price of a like bungalow in the same area.


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