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House Hunting in England: Rural Splendor in the South West Region

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Built on the site of a former farm building, this 4,170-square-foot contemporary House Located on four acres of land in Vinegar, a small village in the Mendip Hills five miles east of the cathedral city of Wells in South West England.

The home is spread over one level with living areas and bedrooms open plan under skylights. “Most of the homes in the area are more dated or traditional, so it’s very rare to have a home of this size with such a modern approach,” he said. modern housea listing broker.

Sellers Katherine and Jeff Rudd worked with Bath architects Michael Williams “To keep the palette of materials, like wood and microcement, very simple,” Drane says. After a year of construction, the couple moved into the home in 2019.

home meets passive house triple-glazed Internorm glass, mechanical ventilation with heat recovery system, rainwater collection, and bio digester Recycle organic waste. Recycled wood is used throughout (Siberian larch covers the home’s exterior) and the outdoor deck is made of recycled plastic. “The house is so efficient that the underfloor heating rarely works,” Rudd said.

A long driveway leads to the house from the local road. The front door is through a timber-framed atrium with a clear polycarbonate ceiling that opens into a long large room with a foyer and vaulted ceiling. Rudd designed the kitchen, whose black appliances he offset a 13-foot steel island. A wall of sliding glass leads from the kitchen to the rear deck.

Floor-to-ceiling shelves line the wall that separates the living room from the bedroom. All four bedrooms are the same size and one has an en-suite bathroom. The same proportions were “extroverted to children,” Drane said.

The Rudds built a separate building with a bathroom and kitchen a few hundred feet from the house, which the couple operates as a short-term rental. “It can easily become over-accommodation in the house,” Drane said.rewildedsaid Rudd. “So much wildlife has returned,” she said.

Binegar is a farming village of about 355 people in Somerset, one of the seven counties that make up the South West of England. WellsHome to an 800-year-old cathedral and known as the smallest city in the country, lies five miles (8 km) to the west. “It’s beautiful countryside, but Bath and Bristol are both about a 40 minute drive, Bristol airport is 30 minutes away and Castle He has good train links from Cary to London,” said Drane. I was. London is about 125 miles northeast.

In a familiar post-pandemic narrative, Wells buyers face inventory shortages and rising prices. The Covid-19 pandemic has “exponentially accelerated the market in Somerset,” said Nathan Emerson, his CEO. property mark, a membership association for real estate professionals. “It’s become a popular spot for people leaving the big city.”

According to data from the UK real estate site right alignmentWells prices will average £329,520 ($401,000) through 2021, up 8% from the 2019 average.

“The people who were supposed to move here have moved here, so it’s calmed down a bit, but it’s still a seller’s market. Holland and Odam Wells agency. “In his 20 years that we have been in business, we have never had such a small inventory of properties.”

Britain’s exit from the European Union is also a factor, with “there are new people coming back from Europe,” he said. greenslade taylor hunt Wells agency. “We also see foreigners returning from Hong Kong.”

Wells’ status as a tourist destination is putting pressure on the market as it is popular with short-term rental investors. Allen & Harris Wells agency. “There are restrictions in central Wells, but less restrictions in other towns and more opportunities in our area,” he said.

Prices vary by region, but Mr Clark puts the average price of a single-family home at £550,000 ($670,000), and between £750,000 and £1 million ($913,000 to $1,220,000) near cathedrals and schools. dollars). “The most recent high was £1.35 million for him in the city centre,” he said. Semi-detached terraced houses sell for an average of £325,000 ($395,000), while apartments in new construction range from £200,000 ($243,000) to £300,000 ($365,000).

Wells’ “modern four-bedroom detached house” costs around £500,000 to £600,000 ($608,000 to $730,000), according to Holland, while a semi-detached three-bedroom terrace house Average around £330,000 ($400,000) for a two-bedroom apartment around £165,000 ($200,000).

As the UK continues to grapple with its national housing problem, shortageEmerson said building a new home in Somerset would be difficult “because of the huge waves of protected land and national parks and massive restrictions on construction”. These areas where there are many buildings will not be built.”

Domestic buyers dominate the property market in the Wells area, and “it’s driven by two forces,” Holland said. One is retirement and people want a different pace of life with access to both the big city and the countryside. “

The pandemic has tipped the balance in favor of younger buyers. “As Covid allowed mobility, schools, coastal access and commuting options in the area began to attract more families,” he said.

Londoners make up part of the market in the area, but buyers from the nearby cities of Bath and Bristol are more common, he said. roadstone Wells agency. “It’s a place where locals want to live,” she said. Demand from foreign buyers is low, but Condé Nast She Traveler-owned nearby Breton is booming, she said. called “The coolest city in the west country”

There are no restrictions on foreign buyers in the UK, according to Dominika Bregas, a real estate attorney at a London law firm. heelys“But it’s not easy for non-UK residents to get a mortgage,” she said, adding that specialist lenders, international banks or mortgage brokers can help.

After the seller accepts the buyer’s offer, attorneys (also known as solicitors) on either side collect documents, including proof of funds, and conduct various property inspections. “Also, Investigation To determine the condition of the house,” Bregas said.

The buyer’s attorney will provide a “contract pack” of documents and collect a security deposit totaling 10% of the purchase price.

Bregas says the process takes five to seven weeks for UK buyers. “But foreign buyers can expect to wait two months or more. The UK is being completely inundated with non-British buyers and everyone has so many cases.”

English; British Pound (1 pound = $1.22)

Foreign buyers face much higher taxes and fees than domestic buyers, according to Justin Bryant principal. Blackfriars Tax Solutions in London. “The government has been cracking down on foreigners for the last decade or so,” he said. “Before 2013, foreigners were not even taxed on UK property investments.”

Primary tax, progressive tax on sale of real estate Stamp tax Land tax (SDLT) grew to a top rate of 12% applicable to sales of £1.5m ($1.83m) or more. Since 2016, the Government has also 3% surcharge “If you already own property somewhere in the world,” Bryant said. and, 2 percent tax For non-UK buyers, introduced in April 2021 to cool the market. “Everything has had a big effect,” Bryant said. “Prime Central London has never regained its peak.”

According to Lodestone’s Morris-Adams, brokerage commissions in England range from 1% to 1.25%.Called annual property tax on this house local tax In the UK, the total is about £3,000 ($3,620), according to the seller Rudd. Her monthly electricity bill totals about £250 ($305), she said.

Lucy Drain, Charlie Arden Brown, modern house011-44-20 3795 5920

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