Neglected property photos beat asking price

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The property with two of the vehicles

A house in Addlestone, Surrey, has revealed just how crazy the property market has become in recent months. The two-bedroom semi-detached house in the commuter town was described as an 'opportunity' and a 'blank canvas'. However, the accompanying photographs of the garden inspire other phrases .... like 'junk-strewn', 'neglected', and 'over-run with abandoned vehicles'.

But that hasn't stopped it exceeding its original asking price.

The Daily Star reported that the home went on sale in October last year for £299,950. The photographs show mainly outdoors shots. These include a neglected jungle of a garden, which has been allowed to completely over-run a number of rusty, abandoned cars in the back. In the front, meanwhile, there are a several motor homes and a traditional gypsy caravan.

Inside, according to the Daily Mail, there's little to complain about in the one available shot - of a bedroom. The only notable fact is that the bare floorboards and white walls - along with the empty tables and care-worn bed - don't seem to offer an enormous amount in the way of comfort.

The fact that the property hadn't sold by the beginning of this month looked distinctly like the property was proving the adage that sales require the house to be properly prepared and carefully photographed.

Strange market?

However, then the market turned, and everything changed. A second agent uploaded details on 1 March, but bumped up the asking price to £320,000. And when the newspapers asked about the property, the agent said they were no longer taking viewings as they had received an offer.

It's not known what the property sold for, although it may not have fetched the full asking price given that typically cottages of this type in the area sell for £305,000.

However, Addlestone is a desirable commuter area. It is nestled among pricey towns like Weybridge and Walton-on-Thames, and perfectly ordinary three-bedroom semi-detached homes can fetch more than £520,000 - while a five-bedroom modern detached property sells for upwards of £700,000. It's the kind of place that attracts people who can see the potential in a neglected home - and the opportunity to snap up a bargain.

Not the first

As we have reported over the last few weeks, the nature of the property market at the moment means that houses stand a good chance of being sold, however they are presented. There was the £114,950 semi-detached home in Erdington, Birmingham, pictured amidst a rising tide of filth, which the agent said had generated a good bit of interest.

Then there was the two-bedroom flat in Tulse Hill, pictured with boxes, books, paper, photographs and clothes piled high around the property. An expert said that it would have no difficulty in fetching its £285,000 asking price because it was big flat with some real plus points, and that London properties were selling like hot cakes, so "in the current market they do not have to look that edible."

But what do you think? Would you be put off by a bit of mess, dirt or neglect? Or does it represent an opportunity to find a rare bargain?