Luxury lifestyle and the country home.
Right up there with the luxury car, high end watch and designer yacht is the country home. Is it just a status symbol or an actual investment? Is it true that all country homes crumbling in front of their owners eyes?
It’s no great surprise that large homes, mansions and stately houses, are expensive to own and operate.
Following the second world war the traditional large country home slid into rapid decline. With many demolished, converted into commercial and institutional use such as corporate headquarters, nursing homes, or colleges.
Some did survive, either by becoming an attraction themselves, or by theme parks and zoos, such as you see today. Some did stay as family homes, but really only if there was another means of income such as farming and tenanted properties supporting the house.
Theres a fairly modern trend with some houses being converted back from commercial use into grand family homes once more. Usually there is still a compromise to be made, with shooting parties, occasional weddings or exclusive hire. The idea being that for one or two events a year, there could be 10 or 11 months of relative peace but still an income.
The unfortunate Covid situation has also caused a great new interest in large, more rural houses. People are finally realising that if lockdowns occur its much better with your own outside space than in a town house, however glamorous. Estate agents report clients with larger single budgets, wanting to purchase one larger permanent residence in the countryside rather than both a smaller second home and a city home.
Just before covid lockdown hit, country houses were already experiencing their strongest growth rate since before 2018. Combined with the reasoning above and the fact everyone is trying to work from home and wants a pleasant space to do so, it looks like a country house is indeed currently a good investment. Experts claim they will rise steadily in value too.
Agents like Savills have said its not just UK town residents that are searching for a UK rural home but that plenty of overseas buyers are looking here too. Now might be the best time to snap up a country home bargain before they have all gone.