After a rejuvenating weekend in my home village of Dittisham walking the Devon coastal path with my brother, I am back in the office feeling slightly sunburnt but ready for another busy week in Bath.
I have worked as an estate agent in the city for seven years and one thing I love is the variety of properties we get from this large geographical area. Some days I’ll be valuing a Grade I-listed townhouse in the city, while at other times I will have my wellies on to value a 16-acre farm.
First things first, we catch up on weekend enquiries then arrange property viewings for my clients.
An exciting surprise awaits me as I set off to value what I think will be a small one-bedroom basement flat in a Georgian building not far from our office in Wood Street. Unexpectedly, it turns out to be a vaulted monster with a master suite and a spa that stretches out underneath the street and all the way to the edge of a local park. This is a rare property for Bath.
The flat also has a window overlooking the park. My tour of this vast home continues on into the library, which features impressive ornate shelving and statuesque stone busts. After a chat, the owner offers us the property to market.
Out in the sticks, a 45-minute drive away in Malmesbury, I’m valuing a farmhouse with the most incredible river frontage, fishing rights and pasture land. I walk the boundary with the owner and his dog, a Hungarian Vizsla.
There is a noise in a bush nearby and the dog shoots off. After some rustling noises, it emerges carrying a live rabbit that is clearly very ill with myxomatosis. The owner quickly puts the poor thing out of its misery with a swift karate chop to the back of its neck. I leave slightly shaken — but I get the instruction to add to our books.
I meet with a group of trustees who recently finished refurbishing two landmark Grade I-listed Georgian townhouses in Queen Square, one of Bath’s most prestigious addresses. The houses were previously one office building that has been converted back into two homes and restored to their former glory. This type of conversion is happening more and more in Bath, as the demand for residential property in the city centre is stronger than ever.
We discuss the marketing strategy for the townhouses, which include a secure gated car park for 12 cars at the rear, and agree on a total guide price of £4.85 million for the pair.
A well-known TV detective is taking my tour around a property that has a lovely river frontage. He likes the house but decides it is too overlooked by the neighbouring properties.
Later, I take a couple moving to Bath with their young family from London, to view a selection of our properties. Like so many families we deal with, this couple are seeking a better quality of life in Bath and are excited at the prospect of trading in their London property for a larger family home.
They need to remain within easy reach of London for work, but this is not difficult, especially as the electrification of the rail line to the capital next year is due to reduce the journey time to just over an hour.
They fall in love with the third house I show them and decide to make an offer. It’s always great to end the week with happy clients.
- Euan Woodman is an associate partner at Carter Jonas in Bath (01225 747253).