We’re house hunting … again!

Mock-up designs of a house extension.

The image above — if you can make it out — represents one of the draft ideas that we had for our wee holiday cottage Kadesh had we been able to extend it. This morning, however, we discovered fairly conclusively that extending it will be nigh on impossible for us. Not because of a lack of vision, or enthusiasm for a building project, but simply because it will be too expensive.

Our wee cottage is in a beautiful location. The cottage has such character, and an enormous garden from the top of which you can see out towards the Forth and over to the Isle of May. However, there is no way that any building firm could easily gain access to the building to do the kind of work that we were hoping for. Which, while not being elaborate, is just too much for that wee spot of land.

We’ve had two estimates of the total cost of extending. The first one was a couple of weeks ago from Rosemary McAllister, who specializes in building warrant and planning applications. She estimated around £100,000. The second, this morning, was from a local architect in St Andrews, who stood with Jane in the garden, in the rain, and tried to look at the project from every conceivable angle to find the most cost-effective way to realise our dream. In the end he said it would be impossible to do for less than £150,000, while £200,000 might be more realistic. And that’s before adding the 12%-14% fees that the architect commands. Or decorating!

So it looks like we’ll be moving again. We’ll get Kadesh smartened up, replace the dead boiler, tidy the garden, sell it, and buy something larger nearby. And move. Again.

At the moment I’m torn between being gutted and being practical. Half of me wants to mourn the loss of an unrealised dream, while the other half just wants to get on and find somewhere else to live.

The house hunting has begun already…

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Gareth Saunders

I’m Gareth J M Saunders, 52 years old, 6′ 4″, father of 3 boys (including twins). Enneagram type FOUR and introvert (INFP), I am a non-stipendiary priest in the Scottish Episcopal Church, I sing with the NYCGB alumni choir, play guitar, play mahjong, write, draw and laugh… Scrum master at Safeguard Global; latterly at Sky and Vision/Cegedim. Former web architect and agile project manager at the University of St Andrews and previously warden at Agnes Blackadder Hall.

2 thoughts on “We’re house hunting … again!”

  1. Ouch.

    I wonder, however, if Kadesh has played it’s part – the book work got done and you can say that it did what you had set out for it. A place to write. And get on that shiny property ladder.

    Oh yeah, and you got to have your place trashed by some wonderful people….

    Maybe not.



  2. Why not move to Queensferry like the rest of us?

    From reading your blog and the comments posted on it recently, it seems like half the people you know live here already…

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