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Buying in a Recession: in search of a new Dara cottage

We’ve finally taken the plunge and bought a new pad of loveliness. Yes, bought. Despite these times of financial horror, we’ve taken advantage of the lowest interest rates since 1694 and shall be moving to Rickmansworth (known locally and affectionately as ‘Ricky’) as soon as we get everything sorted.

The search for our new flat took up three days last week, which is probably as speedy as you’re likely to get. We saw eight properties – four flats, three houses and a maisonette – so we had a pretty good idea of what we could get for our money. Some of these places were, er, interesting, to say the least. Let it never be said that we shunned the prospect of viewing the maisonette with the astroturf garden or the flat that could’ve been a set for Life on Mars. One of the flats – the only one with a balcony, albeit north-facing – was pretty lovely, but was sold the day after we viewed it. One of the others had huge ceilings and loads of space, but was a 25-minute walk from the station. The latter was a total lads’ pad. Copies of ‘Nuts’ and smelly ski gear all over the place! The biggest house had nice wooden floors, fireplaces, a decent kitchen and a garden – but the front room opened straight out onto the road and there was a pub carpark next door (nice pub, though).


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