Counting the Cost of Recession in Sandbanks

Counting the Cost of Recession in Sandbanks

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sandbanks-doset-ariel-view

‘Sandbankrupts’ scream the redtop headlines as the credit squeeze tightens around one of the UK’s most expensive places to live.

Set on a sandy peninsular with spectacular views of Poole Harbour, Sandbanks is fronted by a gaudy millionaire’s row which is home to football’s Delboy in chief Harry Redknapp, former England footballer Darren Anderton, motor-racing tycoon Eddie Jordan and UB40 singer Ali Campbell

Behind the beachfront glass fronted design disasters are scores of other homes and the rumours are that the finance companies are repossessing the Ferraris and Bentleys in the area and a high percentage of boats moored in the harbour are up for sale.

So what is the truth about Sandbanks – is it hype or hypocrisy?

The first myth to bust is this exclusive enclave is not one of the most expensive places to live behind Beverley Hills and Barbados – the fact is this is based on price per square foot for an apartment once sold by local estate agent Tom Doyle but any statistician will say a sample based on so few homes in such a small area is unreliable.

Yes – there are expensive homes clustered in Sandbanks, but it’s no Monte Carlo or Beverley Hills, with streets of fabulous homes.

The giveaway figures are a comparison between the Land Registry’s recorded sales for 2007 and 2008. These are the most up-to-date official and independent home values for the BH13 postcode, which includes Sandbanks  not the hope-to-get prices quoted by estate agents.

Sandbanks – Property Sales and Average Prices 2007 – 2008

2007 2008

Sold

Price

Change

Sold

Price

Change

Flats

255

£372,760

+17%

103

£438,489

-41%

Semis

9

£841,667

+19%

2

£1,010,000

-22%

Detached

117

£1,133,215

+29%

34

£1,278,906

-29%

Terraced

12

£654,666

-74%

5

£488,300

-41%

Source: Land Registry

Not surprisingly, in line with the rest of the country, the number of property transactions has fallen across the board. But in a time when house prices were recorded as plummeting across the rest of the country, the stats show the reverse in Sandbanks, except for terrace homes.

The guys talking up Sandbanks as a place for the rich and famous are those with the most to gain –  like Tom Doyle, who claims to have sold three £1 million plus homes in December.

Sometimes it’s what people don’t say that is the real truth – the figures include completed sales for December and there are indeed average prices of more than £1million  but completed sales and accepted offers are different beasts.

The biggest Sandbanks property developer, Ravine Properties, owned by entrepreneur Richard Carr went in to administration last summer. Perhaps the biggest Sandbanks loser, Mr Carr has lost an estimated £35 million personal fortune

“I can’t afford the mortgage; I have to consolidate my position and get as much cash as I can get my hands on to buy a business. I have no income,” Mr Carr told the Bournemouth Daily Echo.

“I have worked tirelessly to save my companies and I’m obviously very upset but I’m a businessman and I have to be responsible for my actions.”

Secretly, perhaps i’s human nature that the have-nots want those that have to fail and suffer the same financial distress as ordinary working people.