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Preston Homes Under The Hammer couple ‘almost bought London flat’ after auction paddle mishap

Written by on November 25, 2021

A property developer from Preston has revealed how she almost accidentally bought a flat in London after an auctioneer mistook her head scratching for a bid.

Heather and her builder boyfriend Pete appeared on today’s Homes Under The Hammer (November 24) after buying a three-bed bungalow in Ashton-on-Ribble for £136,000.

The show’s segment started with former footballer Dion Dublin taking viewers on a tour of the house and hinting at the start that the property has “a big surprise”.

READ MORE: Warning over Homes Under The Hammer trend

Although billed as a bungalow the house boasts a first floor which Dublin reveals has been created by converting the loft into a bedroom.

“It’s another space they have decided to use and what a great way to use it; if you’ve got the space why not do it?” Dublin adds. “And they’ve got really lucky because this house is on a corner plot so there is loads of outside space as well as a shed and even a garage.”



Surprise: The three-bed bungalow in Ashton-on-Ribble
Surprise: The three-bed bungalow in Ashton-on-Ribble

Apart from a small area of damp in one of the downstairs rooms and “a bit of modernisation and decoration” the presenter says the £120,000 guide price is “a bargain”.

“I think this is a cracking lot for the guide price,” Dublin adds.

Local estate agent Robert Shields from Guildhall Residential Lettings reveals that when refurbished, and with a new bathroom and kitchen, the property could be worth as much as £200,000 or £700 a month if rented out.

“It’s a bit tired but this house is extremely cute,” the agent adds.



Estate agent Robert Shields
Estate agent Robert Shields

The programme, filmed in August 2019, then switches to the auction room where Preston couple Heather and Pete bag the bungalow with their bid of £136,000.

Heather, who moved back to Preston a year earlier after running bars and pubs in Majorca, dances a giddy jig after realising her bid is the highest.

“We had a bit of a scary moment at the auction before the bungalow came up; we’ve never been to an auction before,” Pete says.

“The auctioneer kept looking at us, saying £250, £251, £252, then I noticed (Heather) was scratching her head with the paddle. We were actually on our way to buying some apartments in London.”

The couple revealed they expect the work to take just a couple of months and cost around £20,000 with Heather keen to “roll up her sleeves and get stuck in”.

The cameras return to the property three months later with the couple having replaced the bathroom and kitchen and installing new uPVC windows. The kitchen has been opened up and an en suite has been added to the loft bedroom.

Thanks to their £45,000 investment, more than double their original budget, the bungalow was re-valued at £200,000 to £220,000 or a monthly rental income of £750 to £800.

With their overall investment of £181,000 that’s a potential profit of just shy of £40,000.

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