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Housing for the sandwich generation

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A guide for managing teens, boomerangers and elderly parents under one roof

This month we have collaborated with blogger Talya Stone to discuss the ways that we live, how they are changing and how we can cater to our sandwich generation family demands. Ultimately, we believe that by creating a space that adapts to our growing family under one beautiful, functional, and contemporary roof, we may have the perfect solution to modern family living. 

Talya points out:

It’s a complicated world, and with the rise of the “third space” at home for teens, and of extended homes for the boomerangs and sandwiches among us, the need for homes that can cater to the needs of extended families in a flexible way has never been greater. So how do you cope when you have a teen raging with hormones, a kiddult who won’t leave home, or elderly relatives who need to be brought back into the bosom of the family?

You get smart with your living space.

Want to find out how?

Go to Talya’s blog page to read ‘housing for the sandwich generation’

Talya is the creator and top 1% UK parenting pro-blogger at Motherhood: The Real Deal. She has featured on Good Morning Britain, BBC World News, and her writing featured on the front page of Mumsnet.

In the blog post, Talya highlights how choosing a well-designed modern home provides much needed space for flexible family living, and the benefits that living in a city location can bring for teens and boomerangs.

On top of stunning design in a sought-after location, our family homes at Charles Baker Place offer more than enough room to grow and adapt to sandwich generation family life, with versatile open-plan living spaces that have the potential to be transformed into an endless variety of uses to accommodate all.

To arrange a viewing, get in touch on +44 (0)7831 611 222 or via our contact page – we look forward to hearing from you.


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One Man’s Pound is Another Man’s Dollar

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With the pound’s value still reeling from the after-shock of the EU referendum, foreign property investors are finding their dollars and euros can go far further, as our development, Charles Baker Place in Wandsworth, illustrates.

Currency collapse

On the 23rd June last year, the country held its breath as it awaited the result of the historic EU referendum. Immediately after the shock result was announced, the effects on the UK were palpable. No more so than on the currency markets. The pound dropped to its lowest level since October 2009, sinking to 1.08 versus the euro and 1.27 against the dollar. Over a year on from the result, the pound has shown little sign of recovering, due to fears over the consequences of a hard Brexit.

Prior to summer 2016, the strength of the pound had presented a problem for foreign investors. They had long been drawn to London; they knew the language, admired the culture, and liked the infrastructure. But the relative strength of the pound against the dollar or euro always made the capital a little expensive when compared to the likes of Paris or New York.

charles baker place pound coins

International investors resurgent, not retrenching

However, in the Brexit economy, this is no longer such a problem. Contrary to many forecasts, foreign investment in the London property market has not dropped off a cliff post-referendum. Instead, the pace has picked up. Middle and Far Eastern buyers have been particularly active, with research showing they have almost doubled the amount of money spent in the UK’s regional markets compared to last year. Indeed, the Qatari Investment Authority now owns more land in London than TFL and the Queen put together.

But, far from such vigorous investment activity being restricted to the archetypal Prime London neighbourhoods of Chelsea, Knightsbridge and the like, a weakened pound means foreign investor cash can go further, so they are more willing to venture outside their comfort zones than pre-June 2016. In short, they have room to manoeuvre and experiment.

charles baker place pound euro investment

Chelsea, Belgravia, Wandsworth

One such area is Wandsworth. The South West London inlet may not possess the glamour of Knightsbridge or the glittering alumni of Chelsea, but it enjoys many of the same amenities and characteristics.

Like Chelsea, Wandsworth enjoys a whole host of renowned independent schools including Putney High and Ibstock Place, Northcote Lodge, and The Falcons. Oak Lodge and Ernest Bevin College are also amongst the highest Ofsted-rated state schools.

Amidst rows of traditional, attractive houses, the area also enjoys many of the brand names you’d find on your typical Prime London high street: L.K Bennet, Whistles, and Farrow & Ball, to name but a few. Between them are nestled an array of restaurants, cafes, and other eateries. The prestigious Bellevue village boasts the Michelin-starred restaurant Chez Bruce, run by chef Bruce Poole, which serves elegant French cuisine.

An investor’s little dream: Charles Baker Place

Situated in a perfect position to enjoy all this is Charles Baker Place. A stone’s throw away from Wandsworth Common and a short walk from the nearest rail and tube stations, the development’s proximity to these sought-after features ensures the properties possess an enduring value premium.

With all units in Charles Baker Place benefitting from contemporary interior finishes, modern appliances throughout (such as Sonos surround sound, Nest thermostat systems and underfloor heating) and helpful additions like on-site gated parking, it’s the perfect spot for an investor looking for the finished article. And with prices starting at £1.5 million, Charles Baker Place is pitched at the right level in the market for someone looking to capitalise on a weakened pound by making an investment in one of London’s hidden gems.

Come and look at our amazing homes at Charles Baker Place

To arrange a viewing of our last remaining four bedroom, four storey mews home or our five bedroom townhouses, get in touch on +44 (0)7831 611 222 or via our contact page – we look forward to hearing from you.

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Five creative design ideas for our garden studios

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The garden studio has become a much-coveted piece for buyers seeking a modern home that offers room to grow and adapt to family life. Complete with Cedar cladding and a contemporary feel, our studios are fully hooked up to the mains and plumbed in, making them much more than a mere summer house.

Our Charles Baker Place garden studios have the potential to be transformed into an infinite variety of spaces. Here are just 5 of our ideas (beyond the popular purposes of a playroom or teenage den) to inspire you:

1. A room of ones’ ‘OM’

The seclusion of the garden annex offers a perfect retreat for yogis seeking space to exercise and meditate. Apartment Therapy’s design ideas are fantastic, citing the use of plants to add accent and drama to your space.  Equally, if weights and cardio are more your thing than yoga, the garden studio could easily accommodate all the necessary equipment. Have a look at Ideal Home’s ideas for more on decorating your personal fitness studio.

Charles Baker Place blog - yoga pose

2. Home-working

In the age of entrepreneurial start-ups and an increasing number of people opting for self-employment or choosing to work from home, much store is set by having a separate “home-working” space. Our garden studios at Charles Baker helpfully provide both a physical separation from domestic life as well as psychological one, enabling you to focus uninterrupted.

The garden studio also gives you the rare opportunity to design your own work environment. For example, a crisp, fresh colour scheme may prove motivating in the morning for early risers, whilst a warmer pallet and soft textures would create a welcoming retreat for night-owls. Equally, if your profession involves frequent client visits, the garden studio would provide opportunity to design the space to reflect your business. Home Building has some great ideas on how to create the home office space that works for you.

Charles Baker Place blog - home working

3. Relaxation

For the ultimate downtime, transform the garden studio into a tranquil reading room, or even your own private cinema. The space could easily accommodate a large projector. Plus, there’s freedom to paint the walls a dark colour for the optimum cinematic experience. Home Building has some great tips for prepping the space out, including suggestions on the perfect acoustics and equipment to create the ultimate, tailored cinematic experience.

Charles Baker Place blog - relax

4. The Sound of Music

For the musically minded, our garden annexes present an opportunity for a practise space, or even an all-out home recording studio. Situated away from the main house, you’re free to turn amps up and jam to your heart’s content without the worry of disturbing the neighbours (or the neighbours disturbing you!). For those seeking advice on kitting out your home studio, DIY Musician explains all the equipment you’ll need. E-home recording studio also offers fantastic tips on elements like acoustic treatment and recording station setup so that you can start making music from day one in a practically designed space.  For more details on how our Charles Baker Place garden studios are perfect for musicians recording at home, check out one of our previous blog posts.

Double height studio Townhouse 3

5. Graddy Annexe: Our solution for the ‘boomerang’ generation

Thanks to the high cost of rent and difficulty of getting a foot on the property ladder, record numbers of university leavers are returning to their parents’ houses after graduation. This has led to a surge in demand for the newly anointed ‘graddy annexe’, where children can live with their parents with some degree of separation, having gained a new degree of autonomy.

Our double height garden studio at Number Three Charles Baker Place would be ideal for this requirement, as the hard (and costly) labour of fitting electricity and plumbing is already done for you by us! Read more about the benefits of graddy annexes, including tax advantages, in this article in The Times.

Charles Baker Place blog - graddy annexe

With all this potential to transform one of our garden studios into the space you’ve always wanted, you’d be mad not to arrange a viewing.

Currently, there is one four-bedroom mews with double height studio and two five-bedroom townhouses with single storey garden studios available.

To arrange a viewing, get in touch on +44 (0)7831 611 222  or via our contact page – we look forward to hearing from you.

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The three must-have family extras for all new developments

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As summer draws to a close, London’s property market is waking up again. Overseas investors begin exploring new ventures, families return from summer to plot their next move on the housing ladder and agents get that bit busier.

Over the past few years, a glut of luxury developments has sprung up around the city. For busy families, differentiating between the various schemes can be daunting. But it is possible – you just have to know what to look for.

So here are the three big add-ons all families should look out for in a new development home:

1. Safety

London isn’t New York or Chicago. Levels of crime are low and, generally, getting lower. However, city life is city life; you’re always best-off erring on the safe side, especially if you have young children. Additions that make your home safer are an important part of any parent’s peace of mind. Gated developments are particularly desirable. Not only do they act as a massive deterrence to the likes of burglars, they create a secure space for children to play in unsupervised, with none of the risks of them playing on the street or the road.

The postcode is the flip side of the coin. There is a sizeable variation in crime levels between different areas in London. Selecting a place which has historically enjoyed high levels of safety maximises a family’s sense of reassurance. It’s good to inhabit a secure development, but it’s great to inhabit a secure development in a secure neighbourhood.

Fortunately, our Charles Baker Place homes possess both these benefits. Set back on a quiet road, residents and visitors access the homes via intercom at the gates. Charles Baker is also situated in Wandsworth’s quiet Bellevue Village – a place that’s quite possibly among London’s top five safest postcodes. Wandsworth itself is admirably genteel, with record low rates of crime and a strong sense of community. Bellevue Village is the area’s crème de la crème, dubbed nappy valley because of the number of upwardly mobile young families that live there. More bruschetta and bistro than break-in!

2. Parking

Space to park your motor is essential in the capital. It’s clear to anyone who’s had the misfortune of seeing a residential street during a school run that not having a parking space near your property can be a severe discomfort.

But ideally you won’t just want a space, but a secure space. One that’s removed from the hubbub of the street, where your car doesn’t risk being scratched. Given new developments in London rarely offer off-street parking, such an addition is a real bonus find.

Charles Baker Place is that find. Of our nine units, seven have parking within the gated development – perfect for security and convenience – while one more unit (the last remaining four bedroom mews) has its own garage. Off-street parking is also thrown in, making this one of the best developments for families and their cars in Wandsworth.

Birds Eye View CBP

3. Proximity

If you’re a busy family, you don’t want to be isolated. You don’t want to be out on a limb, miles from the nearest schools, shops, restaurants and other services. Being close to these things simply makes your life easier.

But aspirational families don’t just want to be anywhere. They want to be surrounded by good schools and good shops. Places that improve their quality of life and signal they’re on the up. Getting this golden combination is harder than it might seem. Given London’s reputation for urban sprawl, you’re either likely to land yourself a new home a bit of distance from great amenities or one that’s very close to some less great ones.

Ever the pearl in the ocean, Charles Baker Place does offers the best of both worlds. Our residents are a few steps from Bellevue Road – one of Wandsworth’s main high streets – offering a range of high quality shops and restaurants. These include the legendary Chez Bruce, a Michelin-starred French restaurant overlooking Wandsworth common, from which our residents are only a few minutes’ stroll from. Good schools are also plentiful: Charles Baker Place is no more than a mile or so from a variety of private and preparatory schools (16 in total) and outstanding state schools like Oak Lodge and Ernest Bevin College. If you’re interested in learning more about the local schools, read our blog Back to SchoolIf you’d like to know more about our development’s location, visit our About Us page.

Charles Baker Place - location information

Charles Baker beats them all

With Charles Baker Place ticking all the right boxes, you could be forgiven for assuming prices at the development would be suitably astronomical. Not so. Prices start at around £1.6m and continue through to £2.95m – a snip when you consider that, alongside the security, parking and great location, ours is also a development that’s been thoughtfully designed to the highest quality.

Start the new school term on a high and get down to Charles Baker Place to meet us, we’re sure you and your family will be impressed.

View details for the five bedroom townhouses here, or the four bedroom mews homes here.

Charles Baker Place - kitchen to garden view, townhouse

To arrange a viewing, get in touch on +44 (0)7831 611 222  or via our contact page – we look forward to hearing from you.

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Why our Bellevue Village mews are the perfect contemporary homes for London families

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London’s charming mews streets provide a wealth of unique and attractive houses. Typically set back from busy roads, they provide a secluded, elegant haven from city life and a true sense of community amongst mews owners, making these hidden streets some of London’s most welcoming to live on and highly sought after.

Over the past few years, we have witnessed a growing trend among London’s senior professionals towards owning two types of property – a main or family home just outside the capital and a more central pied-a-terre type residence that doubles up as a long-term investment opportunity.

Our mews homes in Bellevue Village, Wandsworth, tick both boxes.

Charles Baker Place offers something exceptional

Our mews provide spacious living, terraces, an entire floor devoted to the master bedroom, and the surrounding area of Wandsworth Common delivers acres of leafy space. Meanwhile, the short commute into town (30 minutes to Waterloo) reminds you of your proximity to central London. Hence, our mews have it all – the generous living areas and gorgeous green spaces aligned with suburban family homes, alongside efficient transport links that you’d expect from a zone two location.

Unique floorplan, layout and courtyard

Beside the benefits of the location, Charles Baker Place mews are not the quaint two-up-two-down former carriage houses that typically spring to mind. Built from a former community hall and bowling lane, our mews are three-storey, four-bedroom, three-bathroom family homes, and the first-floor open-plan living space offers contemporary layout flooded with light.

Having three bedrooms and two bathrooms on the ground floor, living space and kitchen on the first, and the master bedroom ensuite on the second is perfect for a family with teenage or young adult children as both the children and parents can enjoy space and privacy. Our mews layout would also suit a family with elderly parents living under the same roof, as the ground floor bedrooms provide easy access as well as quietness. This means that how the mews can be used is flexible; the spaces purpose can change as their inhabitants’ requirements change with time.

Similarly to historic mews entrances, our mews are accessed via a gated courtyard, which offers off-street parking for cars and bicycles.

Beyond the space, why do Charles Baker Place mews make financial sense?

Homes in Wandsworth Common’s pretty Bellevue Village are an excellent investment opportunity. Property prices in the area have increased 36% over the last two years, with the average sold price of houses from July 2016 – April 2017 at £1,755,900. That is remarkable by the standards of the capital’s housing market.

Yet, despite evident demand, there are relatively few homes for sale in Bellevue Village – and even fewer mews properties, meaning that finding one is a bit like unearthing a hidden gem.

This is why Charles Baker Place is so special; a unique luxury development with a gated courtyard off Wiseton Road and equipped with the latest mod-cons including underfloor heating, kitchen appliances by Miele and Siemens, Bianco taps, and bathroom fittings from Villeroy and Boch, Duravit and Saneux.

Our mews homes are a perfect fit for Londoners looking for high-quality family living in a location that combines London community with a country feel.

Currently, one mews property is available for purchase. Get in touch on +44 (0)7834 353067 or via our contact page to arrange a viewing of our last remaining four-bedroom mews.