Author Topic: Ideas for monetising a manor house/stately home  (Read 4109 times)

shelivesthedream

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Ideas for monetising a manor house/stately home
« on: June 28, 2014, 04:32:22 AM »
For several years, some friends and I have been batting around the idea of clubbing together and buying a great big manor house in the country. For example, if there were ten of us:

595,000 each would buy us http://www.primelocation.com/for-sale/details/31016311?search_identifier=ae0f6c85292abc3d69349c5274112101

250,000 each would buy us http://www.primelocation.com/for-sale/details/33077492?search_identifier=ae0f6c85292abc3d69349c5274112101

125,000 each would buy us http://www.primelocation.com/for-sale/details/29629604?search_identifier=ae0f6c85292abc3d69349c5274112101

Leaving aside the many difficulties of living with other people, the main problem is not raising the necessary capital. The problem is what to live on once we get there. We are mostly young professionals based in London, so while desperate to escape London property prices we do need to be able to work and couldn't do our current jobs in the middle of the Yorkshire countryside. I and one friend have been talking fairly seriously about getting into holiday cottages, turning it into a shooting estate, renting one wing out as a period film location, etc. We'd all be happy to turn the estate into a part time job according to our particular talents, but it's difficult to run serious numbers as to how much we could make from things like holiday cottages, turning it into a shooting estate, renting it out as a film location, etc. I'd like to get a bit more of a serious business plan together to see if it could work.

To keep it simple and fairly comparable to our current lifestyles, let's say we need to earn 20,000 per person per year (no rent, but increased heating costs and petrol costs from living in the country plus a bit extra to feel secure in case of bad years). So we need to earn 200,000 per year from the house/land to make this workable.

Is this realistic, and how might it be done?

EDIT: Just so you know, we're not looking to do this immediately, so the houses above are just examples. Maybe in the next five to ten years, depending on how keen everyone else currently on board is when I show them real numbers. I think I'm quite aware of the sacrifices involved, but everyone else has not necessarily considered what it would really be like to live somewhere like that. This is why I want to turn it into a plan, not just a pipe dream.
« Last Edit: June 28, 2014, 04:47:29 AM by shelivesthedream »

former player

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Re: Ideas for monetising a manor house/stately home
« Reply #1 on: June 28, 2014, 04:43:55 AM »
I'd go with number 1: great location, space to get away from each other plus commercial use permission already in place.

Check out Country House Rescue on Channel 4 On Demand for a good idea of the difficulties/possibilities.

MKinVA

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Re: Ideas for monetising a manor house/stately home
« Reply #2 on: July 08, 2014, 02:31:22 PM »
One of the ways people in my neck of the woods take care of large estates (old southern plantations) is as a wedding venue. You rent out the facility for a long weekend and the wedding party stays at the estate. Caterers come and go for the rehersals, the bachelors party, the wedding and the reception. All of it in one place. You are going to have to feed people if you go into this. So either one or more of you are caterers or you hire a cook as needed, etc.

Mr. Frugalwoods

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Re: Ideas for monetising a manor house/stately home
« Reply #3 on: July 08, 2014, 07:40:13 PM »
Wow, those look amazing!  Very Downton Abbey!

Just spitballing, but here's what I could come up with:

  • Wedding Venue: People pay obscene amounts for wedding venues.
  • B&B: Boring but a well trod path.
  • Period B&B: Have clothes for guests to dress up in an hold period events with service and food from the era
  • Movie/TV set: I have no idea how common or lucrative this would be
  • Murder Mystery
  • Classroom for teaching restoration carpentry/masonry
  • Heirloom plant cultivation/promotion/sales

I have to imagine that the true answer is all of these plus some!  Diversification is salvation.

JayKay

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Re: Ideas for monetising a manor house/stately home
« Reply #4 on: July 09, 2014, 04:46:05 PM »
Not to put a damper on things, but be extremely careful who you own property with.

To go in with 9 other people on a big ticket item like that seems like asking for trouble, especially if they are all young and still a little unsettled.  You don't want an ugly legal battle if one day half of the people want to sell and the others want to stay.  What if only one wants to leave - do they get their money back?  And what if the property has increased or decreased in value?  Or, if some of them get married - do you expect the spouses to "buy in" if they want to live there?  All of these things need to be crystal clear.

Also make sure you understand in detail the different ways that group ownership can be legally represented, so talk to an expert and chose the one that best fits what you want.

shelivesthedream

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Re: Ideas for monetising a manor house/stately home
« Reply #5 on: July 28, 2014, 03:16:26 PM »
Not to put a damper on things, but be extremely careful who you own property with.

...

Also make sure you understand in detail the different ways that group ownership can be legally represented, so talk to an expert and chose the one that best fits what you want.


Thank you for the warning, but don't worry - we're all a pretty sensible bunch. While I wouldn't expect any of them to renege on agreed responsibilities, I admit wholeheartedly that it'd be pretty tough to all actually agree in the first place. I hadn't though much about the legalities of group ownership yet, though - a good thing to mention.

]
  • Period B&B: Have clothes for guests to dress up in an hold period events with service and food from the era

Um. This sounds AMAZING!!!

Mr Mark

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Re: Ideas for monetising a manor house/stately home
« Reply #6 on: July 31, 2014, 08:08:42 PM »

Corporate retreats
pheasant hunting
fishing
educational retreats,  esp. For retired people!
summer camps for kids
make on grounds sourced foods for local restaurants,  like game, exotic veggies, a few chickens and sheep
convalescent retreats
addiction treatment
spa
writers and artists workshops
niche conventions
...








Wow, those look amazing!  Very Downton Abbey!

Just spitballing, but here's what I could come up with:

  • Wedding Venue: People pay obscene amounts for wedding venues.
  • B&B: Boring but a well trod path.
  • Period B&B: Have clothes for guests to dress up in an hold period events with service and food from the era
  • Movie/TV set: I have no idea how common or lucrative this would be
  • Murder Mystery
  • Classroom for teaching restoration carpentry/masonry
  • Heirloom plant cultivation/promotion/sales

I have to imagine that the true answer is all of these plus some!  Diversification is salvation.