Some apartments from Britain’s biggest retirement builder have dived in value due to hefty charges
When Tony Cross’s father was the first buyer at a McCarthy & Stone retirement development in Folkestone, Kent, he thought he was getting a bargain. The sales rep offered him an “early bird” discount, knocking £3,000 off the cost of a one-bed flat, selling it to him for £161,950 in 2007. But since inheriting it four years ago, Cross has been unable to find a buyer, and is considering selling it to a “buy it now” company – for just £28,000.
How could a relatively newly-built apartment in good condition, with more than 100 years remaining on the lease, collapse in value so spectacularly? The average apartment in Folkestone has gone up in price from £137,000 to £162,000 since 2007 – so why is the McCarthy & Stone flat potentially going for less than the price of a garage in the seaside town?