I have rented a house in Rutland since moving here to work in 2006. I was not going to stay… well, maybe three years at most.
Four years on, and I came to the conclusion that I was staying – at least for the forsee-able future. Having settled in a pretty village with a great community spirit, and been welcomed by my neighbours with open arms, I felt that, if I were to buy in Rutland, it would have to be here, in the village where I’ve already become involved.
How lucky was I to find exactly what I wanted as a result of a chance conversation after Church one Sunday? A few weeks later, and I was the proud possessor of a tiny, two up, two down labourer’s cottage set in its own garden and backing onto fields, yet within five minutes’ walk of Church, Pub and Village Hall.
It looked great to me and even the surveyor was reasonably happy. The cottage had clearly not been ‘loved’ for a while, having been rented out for 20 years with just the normal year by year maintenance covered. But the bones of the cottage looked good: mid-18th century local stone, lots of windows, plenty of garden for the dog and useful outbuildings to make up for the fact that it is pretty tiny!
But once you start taking up the carpets and peeling back the wallpaper… old houses have a habit of revealing a few challenges! The next three months will, I hope, see the cottage brought back to life with a lot of TLC from my excellent (I hope!) builder. As the days grow shorter, reducing my travels around Rutland in the winter, I’ll be recording my Rutland Renovation on this blog.