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We'll throw in the doghouse for only £100,000 extra... deal?
January 23, 2007 5:39 PM   Subscribe

Wow. And I thought California property was expensive. Lordy.
posted by miss lynnster (61 comments total)

 
I had better get in before the bubble bursts. Is pricing like this sustainable?
posted by Iron Rat at 5:46 PM on January 23, 2007


"If you thought of this as the cabin on a boat, you'd say, 'It's pretty spacious.'"

Real estate agents have a capacity for cognitive dissonance which never ceases to amaze me.
posted by IshmaelGraves at 6:07 PM on January 23, 2007 [2 favorites]


For someone living out in the country, who wants a place to stay in the city during the work week, this could work (but not at that price).
posted by Eideteker at 6:14 PM on January 23, 2007


I expect Knightsbridge was exorbitant before there was a 'California'
posted by pompomtom at 6:20 PM on January 23, 2007


Some social climber will buy it, most likely.

Funny that to make it actually habitable tacks on another 59,000 pounds!
posted by zoogleplex at 6:20 PM on January 23, 2007


I... er... ok, so... um...

I am rarely speechless. This is just insanity.

950 sf 2 bedroom apartment... $630/mo, water included. I guess I am not paying too much.

Thanks for the link; it was the most mind-blowing thing I have read today.
posted by The Deej at 6:25 PM on January 23, 2007


Another one in my beloved home :)
posted by jamesonandwater at 6:32 PM on January 23, 2007


Man in the Box
posted by taosbat at 6:33 PM on January 23, 2007


Ummm... I'm looking for an apartment in SF, Deej, & I've seen nothing even CLOSE to that. So I'd say you should thank your lucky stars & keep living there until the death rattles start.

Either that or sublet it to me.
posted by miss lynnster at 6:45 PM on January 23, 2007


Soon to be featured on "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition".
posted by pleeker at 6:51 PM on January 23, 2007


lynnster: He meant "square foot" not San Francisco.
posted by MegoSteve at 6:53 PM on January 23, 2007


Time to invest in Moldova?
posted by pleeker at 6:59 PM on January 23, 2007


I love how they describe the shower as "coffin-sized".
posted by A dead Quaker at 6:59 PM on January 23, 2007


in the mid to late 1990s I was a very frequent guest at a friend's place a few steps from High Street Kensington, and at another friend's place in then-not-yet-cool Notting Hill. well, both friends had good jobs with investment banks, and they could barely afford the rent. Chelsea or Knightsbridge would have been unthinkable, and back then real estate was a thousand times cheaper than it is now.

950 sf 2 bedroom apartment... $630/mo, water included

OK, but where?
posted by matteo at 7:01 PM on January 23, 2007


Oh right. Durrrrrrr. After looking at apt. listings all day, I've got SF on the brain.
posted by miss lynnster at 7:02 PM on January 23, 2007


miss lynnster, I agree, heck of a deal, and it's a very nice place. But it's in Billings, Montana, not SF. Location, location, location. Although, for Billings, it's a great location.

If you ever find yourself passing through Montana you can sublet for free while you're here. :)
posted by The Deej at 7:05 PM on January 23, 2007


yes. sf. not SF.
posted by The Deej at 7:06 PM on January 23, 2007


Soon to be featured on "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition".

I think that would be:
Soon to be featured on "Extreme Makeover: Pantry Edition".
posted by The Deej at 7:09 PM on January 23, 2007


I cannot believe three offers have been made. Mind blowing.

What good is living in Knightsbridge if you can't have snobby dinner parties or space to accommodate your stuff from Harrods?
posted by LoriFLA at 7:13 PM on January 23, 2007


What good is living in Knightsbridge if you can't have snobby dinner parties or space to accommodate your stuff from Harrods?

Perhaps an entrepeneur who realizes he can make a profit by "renting" the mailing address to several people.
posted by vacapinta at 7:17 PM on January 23, 2007


At the very end of the article it notes that there's some interest and it might go for auction, so the claim at the beginning that it's "going for 335,000" is not true.

It's not worth anything until someone pays for it.
posted by mendel at 8:23 PM on January 23, 2007


In 1970 it was possible to buy a 5 bedroom house in a posh London neighborhood for under $50,000. In 1973 I helped my boyfriend buy a two-up and two-down house in Tooting, South London, for $25,000. worth ten times that 35 years later.

But $335,000 for 77 square feet?! Insane.

Maybe the internet and videoconferencing will change real estate prices in the future as more people can work from home, wherever that is.

In India, between 1975 and 1981, I paid between $4 and $10 a month rent.
posted by nickyskye at 8:24 PM on January 23, 2007


Maybe it's the shopping. By comparing it to a boat cabin, the realtor implies that this is a luxury purchase. Maybe the buyers want a place to drop when they shop the "tony stores".
posted by owhydididoit at 8:28 PM on January 23, 2007


it says it has a shower, but what about a toilet? If not, that makes it only a SRO (single room occupancy)...which is ironic to say the least considering it is in one of London's poshest neighborhoods.
posted by untitledalex at 8:43 PM on January 23, 2007


Then again, maybe Tara Reid wants a shoe closet...?
posted by miss lynnster at 8:47 PM on January 23, 2007


Well, the price is outrageous, but small spaces genuinely are usable. A shower doesn't need to be more than "coffin-sized" anyway.

Best small space I've ever seen was a lawyer in Lviv, Ukraine, who really did work out of a hole in the wall. Open the exterior door and you're standing in front of the secretary's desk, in a cubical room about 2m on a side. Said room is occupied overwhelmingly by said desk. Get the secretary's OK, and get the secretary's chair moved, and you can open the interior door to a room of comparable dimensions, where my friend worked. He was renovating a nearby room, which had been a basement cafe, to take his books and a meeting space for more than one person, but at the time I knew him, it was just him and the secretary in this dinky little space off a courtyard downtown. I wonder if it wasn't a renovated maid's room too.
posted by eritain at 9:00 PM on January 23, 2007


I read a lot of interiors magazines (Dwell and the like) and I can totally see someone buying this and then having a feature in Wallpaper* on how they made use of the space.

I like reading articles like that, they make me feel smug for living in a large, yet poorly furnished, apartment. I don't have to find a way to fit all of my belongings into a space the size of a refrigerator box! I can spread them out at will!

(Though I will admit that those featured tiny apartments are usually a hell of a lot swankier than mine. I mean, hell, I have a ladder in my kitchen. For no reason.)
posted by grapefruitmoon at 10:03 PM on January 23, 2007


I lived in London for ten years, leaving only last year, and the price they quote for that flat is perfectly reasonable.

The big problem with London is the insane transport situation. At commuting times traffic moves at around walking pace, literally. Literally is an overused word, but I really mean it. My bus to work would do around 4mph. The tube is quicker, but so crowded it's virtually unbearable.

If you work in the centre of London now, and especially if you work long hours, you are better off with a broom cupboard in Knightsbridge than a 2-bed flat in Peckham.

If you could find a 2-bed flat in Peckham for under £200,000, of course.
posted by winjer at 10:34 PM on January 23, 2007


"Perfectly reasonable"

!!!??!?!

Working long hours and paying obscene amounts of money to live in a broom cupboard don't sound at all reasonable to me.
posted by pwedza at 11:23 PM on January 23, 2007


The big problem with London is the insane transport situation. At commuting times traffic moves at around walking pace, literally. Literally is an overused word, but I really mean it. My bus to work would do around 4mph. The tube is quicker, but so crowded it's virtually unbearable.

I'll second that, winjer. I moved from London this summer for precisely this reasons: horrible public transport. Easily the worst of any European capital.

Certainly being able to avoid the tube is a reason to pay almost any price for a bedsit in Knightsbridge.
posted by three blind mice at 11:47 PM on January 23, 2007


yes, pwedza, but that broom cupboard is in Knightsbridge.

I don't believe that they'll get their asking price-- I mean, they're selling it as a fixer-upper-- but they'll get some money out of it. I've seen apartments in places like the West Village that are miniscule as well, though perhaps not quite on this scale. The couple who founded Apartment Therapy live in a 265 square foot apartment, for example.
posted by jokeefe at 11:48 PM on January 23, 2007


Pish posh! This is quite modest. And it shall keep the riff raff away.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:55 PM on January 23, 2007 [1 favorite]


Too . . . Many . . . People.
posted by Listener at 12:07 AM on January 24, 2007


Is this the same broom cupboard in Knightsbridge that was being sold at a ridiculous rate during the housing boom of the 80s? Every twenty years this broom cupboard changes hands at an insane price. Perhaps it's a barometer of over-inflated property prices.
posted by Grangousier at 12:42 AM on January 24, 2007


I guess it will be the pied a terre of someone who has a large house in the country. The purchaser will probably use it for about three nights a week as a place to crash after dancing the night away at Annabels.

Cheaper than a hotel and a more private place in which to 'entertain' the mistress, it is probably less than five minutes walk to all the major hedge fund offices.
posted by johnny novak at 12:44 AM on January 24, 2007


The big problem with London is the insane transport situation.

Yes! When it snows, such as it has today, I can't go to work! Insane, yet strangely great.

Certainly being able to avoid the tube is a reason to pay almost any price for a bedsit in Knightsbridge.

And with fares increasing every year the financial offset is considerable - the flat may well be worth that price if your lifestyle is such that living there allows you to avoid using mass transport most of the time.

We're looking for a place to rent at the moment, and prices have gone down since we were last looking two years ago. We want to buy, but renting makes a lot more financial sense right now.
posted by goo at 1:44 AM on January 24, 2007


Just looking at Rightmove, the cheapest property currently available in Chelsea cost three times more than my house did when I bought that (albeit in Bradford six years ago). The cheapest property is a garage.

Come live in Bradford. Better curry, and you're not surrounded by twats. At least, not the same class of twat.
posted by vbfg at 1:45 AM on January 24, 2007


Hey, one day we'll all be living in shitty little places like these, when we're all crammed into urban centres because there's no jobs anywhere else.
posted by tehloki at 3:01 AM on January 24, 2007


the flat may well be worth that price if your lifestyle is such that living there allows you to avoid using mass transport most of the time

...and you have a bottom that's been sewn up.

I mean seriously, you can't even use a chamber pot like they did when England was Jolly, because you're on the basement floor. Throw it out the window and you've ruined your view.

Or do they expect you to use the shower as a urinal and a toilet?
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 4:33 AM on January 24, 2007


WTF is a "tony store"?
posted by ninebelow at 5:44 AM on January 24, 2007


Cheaper than a hotel and a more private place in which to 'entertain' the mistress, it is probably less than five minutes walk to all the major hedge fund offices.

Pretty easy going mistress if this is going to impress her. Hooker, maybe. But cheaper than a hotel? Which hotel? And over what period of time?
posted by IndigoJones at 6:02 AM on January 24, 2007


tony
posted by veggieboy at 6:06 AM on January 24, 2007


I think that in the calculation of "cheaper than a hotel", they assume that you'll be ordering champagne through room service every day, and living in it for the rest of your natural life, which you artificially prolong with cryogenics.
posted by tehloki at 7:02 AM on January 24, 2007


That's London for you... the rent on my miniscule 3-bed (no living room) flat near King's Cross...1300/mo. I'm a student. I cry every rent day. Add to that a single bus journey is now £2 (£1 with oystercard) and a cinema ticket sets you back £8 in Camden...is it worth it? Think of the millions of people who want to live here, driving up prices further. The soul weeps. Then moves up north.
posted by cardamine at 7:24 AM on January 24, 2007


Why d'ya think I left Boston? I love it dearly but when you're paying $600+ for a bedroom in a 9-bedroom house, it makes the $670 mortgage on a 2-bedroom bungalow with garage and lovely yard you left behind in Cleveland very, very depressing.

And then you hit yourself in the head for having sold it before you left. Sigh.
posted by bitter-girl.com at 7:34 AM on January 24, 2007


Wow, I was paying $350/month for a bedroom in Boston in 2004. Things are still really hot there, I guess.
posted by Coventry at 7:46 AM on January 24, 2007


And this wasn't even Boston proper, it was Porter Square in Somerville. AND it was my cousin's ex's house, so I got a deal. They bought that place in 1997 or so for about $167K. She put another $50K into renovations. It's now worth $750K+ -- WTF?!
posted by bitter-girl.com at 7:58 AM on January 24, 2007


They have a $200K mortgage, and you're paying $600/month for one of nine bedrooms? How is that such a deal?
posted by owhydididoit at 8:13 AM on January 24, 2007


Because a similarly-sized living space with utitilies included, kitchen access, a parking space (ungodly difficult to come by in that neighborhood) and a proper bathroom (albeit shared by 3 people) would have cost a good $200+ more anywhere else nearby at the time.

I came to my senses and moved out of state. Though if I could afford it, I'd be there or in Maine in a heartbeat.
posted by bitter-girl.com at 8:20 AM on January 24, 2007


What appears to be a toilet appears briefly in this video.
posted by Busy Old Fool at 8:21 AM on January 24, 2007


As others have said, it would make sense as a pied a terre for someone with an actual house elsewhere and a tendency to work late. It might similarly make sense as a small corporate apartment for a company with a few senior people who are inclined to work late.
posted by jacquilynne at 8:44 AM on January 24, 2007


Meanwhile, I'm just trying to find a lovely home office in SF that will cost me less than $2000 a month. It pains me... from 1995-2005 I had a rent controlled apartment in Beverly Hills for $900. Sigh.
posted by miss lynnster at 8:46 AM on January 24, 2007


it would make sense as a pied a terre

Other news articles also suggested it might be used my a near by family to house a maid/nanny.

(Yes, I am another Londoner who will probably spend the next ten years or so paying extortionate rates for a single room in a shared house in which every room has been turned into a bedroom.)
posted by ninebelow at 9:01 AM on January 24, 2007


When I last lived in London, circa early 90's, I had a huge flat in the West8, just off Ken High street. I could see Kensington Palace from the top of the building, and I was walking distance to a tube, a pub and the newspaper who was employing me. At the time, my rent was about $1000 pounds, and I thought it was extraordinarily high...but I wasn't paying it, so I didn't really care.

It's my understanding that the same apartment is now renting for 5k+ .

Crazy.
posted by dejah420 at 9:11 AM on January 24, 2007


Five thousand POUNDS? Ok, I take back everything I said about Boston.

Boston, honey, you're a bargain.
posted by bitter-girl.com at 9:37 AM on January 24, 2007


Tony Store
posted by skammer at 9:58 AM on January 24, 2007


I pay $450 for a 1 and 1/2 bedroom flat with a backyard that borders on a river. Then again, I don't live in London.
posted by drezdn at 10:15 AM on January 24, 2007


Originally conceived as a maid's room, the apartment at 18 Cadogan Place hasn't been used in years and is littered with trash bags and crumbling paint.

What the hell? You'd think that the place would sell quicker and get better offers if they paid some schlep a hundred quid to fix up the place a bit. Or screw that, just take the damn trash out.
posted by rolypolyman at 11:22 AM on January 24, 2007


as a pied at terre it makes perfect sense. Try and get a hotel in Mayfair for less than £300 a night, assuming three nights a week, let's say it adds up to a £1000.

Times 45 working weeks in the year. It's a no brainer. And you have the equity.

There are thousands of similar studio flats in Kensington and Chelsea, this just happens to be a little smaller, and indeed, cheaper, than most.
posted by johnny novak at 11:51 AM on January 24, 2007


How many square foot would a water hearter and furnace take up?

Acually I am betting one of the flat owners on the other sides of the apartment are bidding for it, if you live there, and likely have for sometime and don't wish to move, yet you want more room where do you get it? A $335K closet comes up for sale next door just when you need place for that shoe collection.

Buying a closet and busting down a wall is more doable then moving and trying to find another disgustingly expensive place to live. You woudn't need to add the heating stuff then either.
posted by Dome-O-Rama at 3:45 PM on January 24, 2007


You wouldn't even need a full water heater, just one of those tankless units that are so common in Germany/Central Europe. If there's a shower, there are water lines, so no problem there. Heat? Come on, how cold can London possibly get? A space that small, if you're just sleeping, would be totally fine with an electric blanket on the bed and good window treatments. Of course, it doesn't have electricity, so forget the tankless or the blanket... but with electricity, hey -- why not?
posted by bitter-girl.com at 8:05 PM on January 24, 2007


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