Katie Price buys Conservative minister's house
Katie Price has moved into a £1.3 million property. Bizarrely not only did she buy it from Francis Maude - the Cabinet Office Minister - it also happened to be the house next door to hers. But what did she get for her money?
Price put her house up for sale during the rocky period in her current marriage, when it emerged that her husband hadn't been entirely faithful, and the stables on the property had been used for some of the liaisons. She was said to be particularly distressed because she loved the house and the area. So she hit on the perfect solution: she bought the house next door.
She recently tweeted: "Absolutely love my new house such a perfect family home. We have all settled in and don't miss the old house one bit." Part of her joy may have come from the fact that according to The Sun she made £700,000 from the move, after reportedly selling her old home to an Olympic gold-medallist showjumper Scott Brash
Maude put the property on the market in 2012 - a year after Price moved in next door. He was originally asking for £1.5 million, but Price is said to have got it for less. He's unlikely to be particularly put-out, however, because he is said to have paid just £342,000 for the property in 1996.
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The house is built in the Arts and Crafts style from oak, iron and clay. It's apparently in the Weaden style. It boasts nine bedrooms, and has an impressive staircase that leads to a galleried upper landing. It also has a two-bedroom annex, a tennis court, and stables.
Among the more unusual spaces in the grounds are a game larder, a toilet for the gardener and an orchard. During the house sale process, Maude was forced to put out a statement saying he'd never used the larder for game or employed a gardener.
It's an impressive home, but it seems as though Price is continuing to trade down the property ladder. She bought her previous property for £2 million in 2011. At that stage she was moving on from the property she had shared with husbands Peter Andre and Alex Reid - which had cost her £2.5 million in 2008. The house she shared with Andre before that had been a Victorian house in Ockley, valued at £3 million.
It's an interesting trend for the reality star and author, who perhaps realised that her tendency to move house every three or four years was costing her a small fortune in stamp duty, so she decided to trade out of the 7% tax bracket. However, at this rate, it'll only take her two more moves before she's in a suburban semi.
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