How to get cheaper motoring for young drivers as costs hit nearly £2,400 for first year of driving

Many youngsters find it difficult to afford running a car. The latest figures show that on average, a 17 to 24-year-old driver now pays nearly £2,400 to run a car in their first year of driving, of which more than half will be insurance costs. 

Here, The Mail on Sunday looks at how young motorists can drive down the cost of insurance cover and examines moves to make driving for youngsters more affordable.

Safe: Charlotte Raymond has benefited from the black box technology

Telematics technology, which allows insurance companies to monitor driving behaviour, is helping many young motorists manage their insurance bills. With a ‘black box’ telematics policy, a smartphone-sized box is installed out of sight inside a car. 

It works like a sat-nav or GPS, but monitors how a motorist drives by recording – and assessing – their speed, acceleration, braking, the time of day they drive and how they manoeuvre around corners.

Providers include Co-op Insurance, Marmalade, Insurethebox, Smartdriverclub, Ingenie and MyPolicy.

Graeme Trudgill, of the British Insurance Brokers’ Association, says: ‘Putting a telematics black box in a car to monitor driving can reduce premiums for younger motorists by up to a quarter. It also reduces accidents three-fold in the first year of driving.’

One person to benefit from telematics technology is 21-year-old Charlotte Raymond, from Llanelli, Carmarthenshire. She has had cover with Co-op via its Young Driver Black Box telematics policy since she was 17.

As a result of driving safely since taking out her insurance, she has managed to reduce her annual premium from £1,012 in 2014 to just £440 this year.

She says: ‘When I got my car four years ago – a Vauxhall Corsa which I am still driving today – I compared insurers and Co-op’s black box offering made the most sense financially. Insurance costs for young drivers are extremely high, but the quote I got back from Co-op was considerably lower than those from other insurers.’

Charlotte had a black box installed after passing her test.

She adds: ‘There are restrictions – such as not being able to go out in my car between 11 o’clock at night and six o’clock in the morning – but I do not feel too hindered by this curfew.

‘My driving also gets monitored and scored on a number of factors – speeding, cornering, braking and acceleration. But I do not mind this as it keeps me safe and means I ultimately save money on my insurance if I drive safely.

‘My premiums have more than halved in four years. Meanwhile a lot of my friends are still paying premiums running into thousands of pounds a year.’

A car is integral to the work of junior doctor Robyn Lewis. But she finds that the cost of owning, running and insuring her Vauxhall Corsa is a big burden on her finances.

The 24-year-old, from Ealing, West London, has just graduated from medical school and is about to take up a more permanent post at a hospital in West London.

Plea: Junior doctor Robyn Lewis would like to see insurance premium tax reduced for young drivers

She says: ‘During my studies, I needed my car to drive to hospitals in London and across the South East.

‘For around five months I was spending as much as two-and-a-half hours a day in my car. I could have used public transport, but that would have meant spending even longer commuting.’

Robyn estimates she spends around £200 a month on petrol. She also pays £20 a month for a servicing plan which covers the cost of repairs – plus road tax, a resident parking permit and occasional parking fees at hospitals.

While all of these costs mount up, the biggest motoring expense remains her car insurance.

She says: ‘When I first passed my driving test, I paid around £1,400 for insurance. I have been driving for several years and am still paying a huge £800 for my current policy.

‘With insurance costing this much, it is really hard for young drivers to be able to afford to keep a car on the road. I would support a call for the Chancellor of the Exchequer to scrap – or at least reduce – insurance premium tax for young motorists.

‘I think the Government should be taking steps to make driving more affordable for people like me. In my work, a car is a necessity, not a luxury.’

Charlotte has just completed her final year at Cardiff University studying politics.

She says: ‘I do not have my car with me in Cardiff, but go home frequently during term time – as well as during the holidays – and use it for local journeys. I now feel a lot more confident about my driving.’

Charlotte is one of Co-op’s ‘ten safest young drivers.’ Overall, these ten drivers have seen their annual premiums decrease by an average of £382 since taking out their insurance.

Findings from the Co-op show that since 2015 the proportion of overall claims per year attributed to drivers aged 17 to 24 has decreased by a fifth as a result of the widespread use of ‘black box’ telematics data.

Steve Kerrigan, of the Co-op, says: ‘While statistics highlight that young drivers are involved in a quarter of all accidents on the roads, it is really encouraging to see that telematics, together with our own training modules, is continuing to have such a positive impact on the safety of young drivers.

‘The financial incentive offered for using telematics has helped result in a 21 per cent reduction in incidents among this age group.’

Since launching its Young Driver proposition in 2011, the firm has ‘given back’ £12.6 million to young motorists – an average of £117 per policy.

Mike Bristow from road safety charity Brake adds: ‘The reported reduction in claims for young drivers shows telematics has an important role to play in promoting safe driver behaviour and is welcomed.

‘The data shows young drivers do respond to black box systems which discourage them from slipping into dangerous habits behind the wheel.’

Some campaigners are calling on the Government to reduce or abolish insurance premium tax for younger motorists to help make driving more affordable.

This tax works in a similar way to VAT in that it is added to the price of insurance policies – at a rate of 12 per cent.

‘But some believe it could be pushed up to as much as 20 per cent by the end of the decade, especially given the need to fund extra spending in the National Health Service.

Research from website Comparethemarket shows that four out of five young drivers do not know what the current rate of insurance premium tax is, despite it adding an average £161 to their annual insurance bill.

Simon McCulloch, a director of the website, says: ‘We urge the Government to introduce a cap on insurance premium tax for drivers under 25 – or remove it altogether.

‘Our research shows that 61 per cent of young motorists do not think the Government is doing enough to make driving affordable for them.’

Further findings show more than two thirds of young drivers rely on their car as part of their commute to work, school or university.

More than a quarter fear that if they could no longer afford to drive then they would risk losing their job.

McCulloch adds: ‘Failing to introduce a limit on insurance premium tax will make it harder for many youngsters, a key segment of the workforce, to get to their place of employment.’

Earlier this year, the Government said it would look at introducing graduated driving licences in an attempt to curb the number of young drivers killed on the roads.

This would mean those who had recently passed their test would face limitations, such as restrictions on night driving and on the number of passengers they can carry.

Mike Bristow from road safety charity Brake, says: ‘We need to look at telematics, along with graduated licences, to improve driving standards among young motorists.’

But some are concerned that such a move could make driving more difficult for young people.

Simon McCulloch says: ‘It needs to be balanced against a restriction in freedom to drive at night. Imposing conditions on new motorists could reduce the number who learn to drive.’

Do you want to automatically post your MailOnline comments to your Facebook Timeline?

Your comment will be posted to MailOnline as usual.

Do you want to automatically post your MailOnline comments to your Facebook Timeline?

We will automatically post your comment and a link to the news story to your Facebook timeline at the same time it is posted on MailOnline. To do this we will link your MailOnline account with your Facebook account. We’ll ask you to confirm this for your first post to Facebook.

Part of the Daily Mail, The Mail on Sunday & Metro Media Group

 

July 28, 2018

Sources: Daily Mail

Related news

  •  The Latest: Tesla shares fall as Musk says stress takes toll

    The Latest: Tesla shares fall as Musk says stress takes toll

    surprising development surrounding CEO Elon Musk.</p><p> Musk admitted in an interview with The New York Times that stress is taking a heavy toll on him. The company has been under pressure to increase production of its Model 3 sedan, and Musk said that he was working up to 120 hours a week and sometimes takes Ambien to get to sleep.</p><p> Musk raised a ruckus last week when he tweeted that he might take Tesla private. The tweet reportedly has spurred an investigation by securities regulators.</p><p> Tesla shares fell 3.6 percent to $323 in early trading.</p><p> Electric car maker Tesla's CEO Elon Musk has admitted in a wide-ranging interview with The New York Times that stress is taking a heavy toll in what he calls an "excruciating year."</p><p> In the newspaper's account of the interview, published Friday, Musk said he was working up to 120 hours a week and sometimes takes Ambien to get to sleep.</p><p> Musk stood by his tweet last week saying he might take Tesla private.</p><p> Reports say government regulators have subpoenaed Tesla as they dig deeper into his disclosure of the potential buyout.</p><p> The subpoena signals regulators are investigating if Musk was telling the truth in his tweet about have financing locked up for a deal that analysts have estimated would require $25 billion to $50 billion.</p>

    1 August 17, 2018
  •  Markets Right Now: Stocks open lower on Wall Street

    Markets Right Now: Stocks open lower on Wall Street

    es local):</p><p> Stocks are opening mostly lower on Wall Street, following a big gain the day before, after several companies issued weak earnings or forecasts.</p><p> Chipmakers Applied Materials and Nvidia both fell sharply in early trading Friday after warning of weaker results ahead. Applied Materials fell 8.8 percent and Nvidia fell 2.7 percent.</p><p> Farm equipment maker Deere fell 2.4 percent after warning of higher costs.</p><p> The S&P 500 index fell 4 points, or 0.1 percent, to 2,836.</p><p> The Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped 9 points to 25,547. The Nasdaq composite fell 31 points, or 0.4 percent, to 7,778.</p><p> Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury fell to 2.85 percent.</p>

    1 August 17, 2018
  •  The Latest: Tesla shares fall as Musk says stress takes toll

    The Latest: Tesla shares fall as Musk says stress takes toll

    surprising development surrounding CEO Elon Musk.</p><p> Musk admitted in an interview with The New York Times that stress is taking a heavy toll on him. The company has been under pressure to increase production of its Model 3 sedan, and Musk said that he was working up to 120 hours a week and sometimes takes Ambien to get to sleep.</p><p> Musk raised a ruckus last week when he tweeted that he might take Tesla private. The tweet reportedly has spurred an investigation by securities regulators.</p><p> Tesla shares fell 3.6 percent to $323 in early trading.</p><p> Electric car maker Tesla's CEO Elon Musk has admitted in a wide-ranging interview with The New York Times that stress is taking a heavy toll in what he calls an "excruciating year."</p><p> In the newspaper's account of the interview, published Friday, Musk said he was working up to 120 hours a week and sometimes takes Ambien to get to sleep.</p><p> Musk stood by his tweet last week saying he might take Tesla private.</p><p> Reports say government regulators have subpoenaed Tesla as they dig deeper into his disclosure of the potential buyout.</p><p> The subpoena signals regulators are investigating if Musk was telling the truth in his tweet about have financing locked up for a deal that analysts have estimated would require $25 billion to $50 billion.</p>

    1 August 17, 2018
  • 
	Plans to reopen mothballed Manston Airport in Kent move a step closer

    Plans to reopen mothballed Manston Airport in Kent move a step closer

    have moved a step closer.</p><p>The Government’s Planning Inspectorate has launched an inquiry into proposals by Riveroak Strategic Partners to reopen mothballed Manston Airport. </p><p>The airfield has been closed for four years but Riveroak believe it could be used to divert cargo away from congested airports. </p><p>Mothballed: Manston Airport on the Isle of Thanet in Kent has been closed for four years</p><p>Roger Gale, North Thanet MP, said: ‘We are desperately short of runway capacity in the South East and Manston offers an opportunity.’</p><p> The views expressed in the contents above are those of our users and do not necessarily reflect the views of MailOnline. </p><p>Do you want to automatically post your MailOnline comments to your Facebook Timeline?</p><p>Your comment will be posted to MailOnline as usual.</p><p>Do you want to automatically post your MailOnline comments to your Facebook Timeline?</p><p> We will automatically post your comment and a link to the news story to your Facebook timeline at the same time it is posted on MailOnline. To do this we will link your MailOnline account with your Facebook account. We’ll ask you to confirm this for your first post to Facebook.</p><p>Part of the Daily Mail, The Mail on Sunday &amp; Metro Media Group</p>

    1 August 17, 2018
  • 
	Brewdog told to pay £12,000 compensation to former employee

    Brewdog told to pay £12,000 compensation to former employee

    pensation to a former employee who was sacked after telling the company he was about to be declared legally blind.</p><p>James Ross, 47, who worked in the Aberdeen brewer's packaging department, suffers with Stargardt disease, which causes progressive vision loss. </p><p>After he refused to move to a different department last year, claiming the new role would be more difficult with his condition, Brewdog fired him.</p><p>Not cool: Judge Nick Hosie described Brewdog's actions as 'astonishing</p><p>Employment judge Nick Hosie described Brewdog's actions as 'astonishing'.</p><p> The views expressed in the contents above are those of our users and do not necessarily reflect the views of MailOnline. </p><p>Do you want to automatically post your MailOnline comments to your Facebook Timeline?</p><p>Your comment will be posted to MailOnline as usual.</p><p>Do you want to automatically post your MailOnline comments to your Facebook Timeline?</p><p> We will automatically post your comment and a link to the news story to your Facebook timeline at the same time it is posted on MailOnline. To do this we will link your MailOnline account with your Facebook account. We’ll ask you to confirm this for your first post to Facebook.</p><p>Part of the Daily Mail, The Mail on Sunday &amp; Metro Media Group</p>

    1 August 17, 2018
  • 
	Rio Tinto hires bankers to sell its £4.7bn Canadian iron-ore operations

    Rio Tinto hires bankers to sell its £4.7bn Canadian iron-ore operations

    l its £4.7billion Canadian iron-ore operations, according to reports.</p><p>Possible bidders for the 58.7 per cent stake in Iron Ore Company of Canada include ArcelorMittal and Teck, Sky News reported.</p><p>Rio is also said to be considering floating the division on the Toronto Stock Exchange. The outlook for the commodity is uncertain as major buyer China is expected to increasingly rely on recycled iron.</p><p>Rio is also said to be considering floating the division on the Toronto Stock Exchange</p><p>The sale, which would be one of its largest for years, comes as it concentrates on iron ore assets in Western Australia. Its first-half profits grew 12 per cent to £3.4billion.</p><p>Do you want to automatically post your MailOnline comments to your Facebook Timeline?</p><p>Your comment will be posted to MailOnline as usual.</p><p>Do you want to automatically post your MailOnline comments to your Facebook Timeline?</p><p> We will automatically post your comment and a link to the news story to your Facebook timeline at the same time it is posted on MailOnline. To do this we will link your MailOnline account with your Facebook account. We’ll ask you to confirm this for your first post to Facebook.</p><p>Part of the Daily Mail, The Mail on Sunday &amp; Metro Media Group</p>

    1 August 17, 2018
  • 
	B&Q is basking in our scorching summer as heatwave boosts sales  

    B&Q is basking in our scorching summer as heatwave boosts sales  

    isher</p><p>The summer heatwave saw paddling pools sell out and fans fly off the shelves at B&amp;Q owner Kingfisher.</p><p>The DIY group, which also owns Screwfix in the UK, has seen business bounce back following a slump during the icy blast earlier in the year.</p><p>Same store sales at Kingfisher were 1.6 per cent higher in the three months to July than they were in the same period last year. That followed a 4 per cent fall in the previous three months when the Beast from the East struck.</p><p>With the mercury rising, sales of hosepipes and sprinklers at B&amp;Q soared 400 per cent, while sales of barbecue charcoal leapt 75 per cent.</p><p>The home improvement chain also managed to shift 305,000 fans and sold out of more than 60,000 paddling pools. Other top sellers included garden furniture, outdoor pots, decking and fencing. Overall, sales at B&amp;Q rose 3.6 per cent during the three months.</p><p>Screwfix, which sells tools for tradesmen, continued to be the jewel in Kingfisher’s crown with sales up 5.5 per cent. But Kingfisher’s French arm struggled, with sales at home improvement chain Castorama down 3.8 per cent.</p><p>B&amp;Q’s improved sales come as its main rival, Homebase, prepares to close 42 stores. But despite strong sales for summer products at B&amp;Q, analysts said the warm weather was masking the chain’s true performance. </p><p>George Salmon, of Hargreaves Lansdown, said: ‘The sales figures are more a function of a scorching summer than of any underlying progress.’</p><p>Véronique Laury, chief executive at Kingfisher, said it was taking action to improve Castorama’s performance ‘with the benefits expected to come through in the second half’.</p><p>Do you want to automatically post your MailOnline comments to your Facebook Timeline?</p><p>Your comment will be posted to MailOnline as usual.</p><p>Do you want to automatically post your MailOnline comments to your Facebook Timeline?</p><p> We will automatically post your comment and a link to the news story to your Facebook timeline at the same time it is posted on MailOnline. To do this we will link your MailOnline account with your Facebook account. We’ll ask you to confirm this for your first post to Facebook.</p><p>Part of the Daily Mail, The Mail on Sunday &amp; Metro Media Group</p>

    1 August 17, 2018
  • 
	BHS auditor PwC shamed over pension fees 

    BHS auditor PwC shamed over pension fees 

    Sir Philip Green on his company’s finances, according to a damning report.</p><p>Accountants were in line to collect more fees the more workers they were able to persuade to change their pension benefits, the accounting watchdog said.</p><p>Both PwC’s and the Pensions Regulator’s guidance says such fees – known as contingency fees – should not be charged.</p><p>PwC broke pension rules while advising Sir Philip Green on his company’s finances, says report</p><p>Former pensions minister Baroness Altmann said: ‘It’s an outrage. Contingent charging should have no place in a transaction that is supposed to be in members’ interests.’</p><p>The alleged arrangement emerged as part of a Financial Reporting Council report into PwC’s audit of Green’s retail chain BHS before it was sold for £1 to serial bankrupt Dominic Chappell in 2015. </p><p>It went bust one year later. PwC has been fined £10million for shortcomings in the audit including failing to warn of the risk that BHS might be on the brink of the collapse.</p><p>The FRC said PwC also worked on a pensions ‘incentive exercise’ for Green’s wider Taveta Group.</p><p>It is believed this involved members being offered a transfer out of the scheme to help reduce liabilities. Details have not been confirmed.</p><p>The FRC said: ‘The respondents’ fees for the pensions incentive exercise were related to and contingent upon the number of pension scheme members accepting the incentive. Contingency fee arrangements of that nature contravened guidance issued by the Pensions Regulator and by PwC itself.’</p><p>The report looks at PwC’s audit of Green’s retail chain BHS before it was sold for £1</p><p>It is understood the exercise was not connected to BHS, whose scheme had a £571million black hole when the firm collapsed. An incentive exercise usually involves an employer trying to reduce risk or cost from a scheme by offering members the option to transfer out of the scheme or modify their benefits.</p><p>The Pensions Regulator worries that members may be disadvantaged by such exercises, especially if they do not get to make informed choices.</p><p>Altmann added: ‘If they were offering people more than a fair deal that might be fine, but if they were offering people more than a fair deal one has to wonder why they thought they needed incentives to recommend the transfer.’</p><p>PwC said: ‘Although described as a contingency fee, our fee for this work was actually less than if charged at our hourly rate. There has been no suggestion from the FRC that our objectivity was impaired and the quality of the work has not been called into question.’</p><p>Taveta had not commented last night. The Pensions Regulator declined to comment.</p><p> The views expressed in the contents above are those of our users and do not necessarily reflect the views of MailOnline. </p><p>Do you want to automatically post your MailOnline comments to your Facebook Timeline?</p><p>Your comment will be posted to MailOnline as usual.</p><p>Do you want to automatically post your MailOnline comments to your Facebook Timeline?</p><p> We will automatically post your comment and a link to the news story to your Facebook timeline at the same time it is posted on MailOnline. To do this we will link your MailOnline account with your Facebook account. We’ll ask you to confirm this for your first post to Facebook.</p><p>Part of the Daily Mail, The Mail on Sunday &amp; Metro Media Group</p>

    1 August 17, 2018
  • 
	MAGGIE PAGANO: Tax sales and scrap business rates to save our High Street

    MAGGIE PAGANO: Tax sales and scrap business rates to save our High Street

    gh go shopping?’ Well, now could be a good time to update the phrase to ‘the tough go shopping online’.</p><p>An even more interesting nugget in the ONS numbers was that online spending through department store websites was also at a new high of 18.2 per cent of total sales.</p><p>On the rise: Online sales now account for nearly £1 in every £5 spent online</p><p>The blazing heat and the World Cup may have kept shoppers off the High Street but it did not stop them treating themselves: retail sales for July bounced up by 0.7 per cent on the previous month, an increase due entirely to online shopping and some discounting.</p><p>We are all multi-channel now. Buying online through our phones or laptops via social media sites such as Instagram – which hook you up to the millions of shopping sites such as Amazon – is now ubiquitous.</p><p>So too is buying online from bricks and mortar stores, which as the latest figures show, is of increasing importance to sales. With the spread of the blogging ‘influencers’ on channels such as Instagram – whose recommendations can move millions of products in a matter of hours – online shopping looks set to soar.</p><p>That’s why Philip Hammond is right to address the march of online retail at the expense of the High Street. But his proposal for an ‘Amazon tax’ is ill-conceived on many fronts and should be dumped before it gets any further traction. He needs to go to the root cause of the problem.</p><p>Just as shoppers are agnostic about where they buy from, so should the tax system be agnostic about where sales come from.</p><p>'It would also be foolish of Hammond to single out companies such as Amazon at such a critical time for the UK economy', says Maggie Pagano</p><p>Most retailers today are multi-channel, just as we customers are. Amazon, for example, owns Whole Foods stores, while high street shops such as Marks &amp; Spencer are closing stores and driving business online.</p><p>The reality is that we are still at the dawn of the online revolution, and no one can predict how it will pan out. It would also be foolish of Hammond to single out companies such as Amazon at such a critical time for the UK economy. This would give out the wrong signals for others wanting to invest in the digital economy.</p><p>For example, Amazon’s latest idea is for a new price comparison site for house and car insurance in the UK.</p><p>Since the UK has one of the world’s most developed digital networks with some of the world’s most skilled online techies, it would be crazy to strangle that growth.</p><p>The digital economy is now 10 per cent of GDP, double that of the Group of 20 leading industrial nations. It’s true there is unfair competition between the high street retailers and internet giants. Amazon halved its tax bill in the UK last year yet still pays less in tax than M&amp;S does on business rates. That’s not right.</p><p>But rather than go for a knee-jerk Amazon tax, Hammond should be bolder and more ambitious in his thinking. He should consider a transactions tax for everyone – maybe one that links sales to geographic area where the products are bought – and consider scrapping business rates altogether.</p><p>Now that would help high street shops, whereas an online tax would do nothing to rescue them. The Chancellor must go back to the drawing board – his digital one.</p><p>The loss of so many lives in the Genoa bridge collapse is tragic. But it would be a greater tragedy if the disaster leads to more political point-scoring rather than fixing Italy’s creaking infrastructure.</p><p>It’s already open war between Autostrade per l’Italia, the toll operator partly owned by the Benetton family, and the government, which is threatening to revoke its licence without waiting for criminal proceedings.</p><p>More worrying is how the government’s commitment to following EU budget rules is going to square with the finance minister’s new pledge to make public investment in infrastructure a priority ‘for which there will be no budgetary constraints’. Ouch.</p><p>Investors are already spooked. Two-year bond yields have tripled in the past month over fears for Italy’s short-term financial stability. They will be more spooked when September’s budget talks get going.</p><p> The views expressed in the contents above are those of our users and do not necessarily reflect the views of MailOnline. </p><p>Do you want to automatically post your MailOnline comments to your Facebook Timeline?</p><p>Your comment will be posted to MailOnline as usual.</p><p>Do you want to automatically post your MailOnline comments to your Facebook Timeline?</p><p> We will automatically post your comment and a link to the news story to your Facebook timeline at the same time it is posted on MailOnline. To do this we will link your MailOnline account with your Facebook account. We’ll ask you to confirm this for your first post to Facebook.</p><p>Part of the Daily Mail, The Mail on Sunday &amp; Metro Media Group</p>

    1 August 17, 2018
  • 
	More and more houses are coming from office block conversions

    More and more houses are coming from office block conversions

    s dramatically. It's bad news for business but might it be good news for homeowners Could those redundant shops and offices become happy homes?</p><p>When it comes to conversions, no building is out of bounds. The Church of England calculates about 20 of its churches are sold off each year - most become homes; since 2010 more than 450 libraries have closed across Britain; 2,900 bank branches have shut in the past three years; and Network Rail intends to sell off 4,455 arches</p><p>There are opportunities galore for those with imagination.</p><p>Waterfront: The scramble for new housing has led to more inventive ways to create homes</p><p>In Margate, Kent, the promenade loos are for sale with proposals to build a three bedroom, two bathroom home. It's priced at £290,000 (struttandparker.com) - before demolition or conversion costs. Also in Kent, Canterbury has seen substantial change with plenty of buildings becoming redundant and ripe for conversion.</p><p>Boots the chemist in the centre has partially become flats, while a former tannery and theatre have been transformed. 'We're handling a former hall, old shops, former barracks, old churches, old cinemas,' says Edward Church of Strutt &amp; Parker. </p><p>'Turning offices into swanky flats is a big draw for a growing town looking for flexible housing solutions.' While almost any building can be converted, there are practical constraints. </p><p>Some old stores have to be gutted as their ceilings need space for air conditioning, improved fire prevention features and more wiring. </p><p>Planners usually insist banks have their security devices and vaults removed, which can be costly. 'Converting older buildings like schools and hospitals (which may be listed) has a high build cost,' says Jonathan Lambert of Savills. But office blocks work a treat. </p><p>House builders have been given 'Permitted Development Rights' to turn them into homes without needing detailed planning. </p><p>As a result, between 2015 and the end of last year 30,575 homes in England were created from redundant offices. One of the biggest locations for these conversions is Bristol, where a million square feet of offices have become student pods, rental apartments and even hotel rooms. </p><p>The developer Urban Splash - which converted the Fort Dunlop tyre factory in the West Midlands and old silk mills in Bradford into homes - has now outlined plans to convert Plymouth's 14-storey Civic Centre into 144 apartments above bars, restaurants and cafe conversions are important, not just to provide new homes.</p><p>'Boarded-up premises attract graffiti and bring down the value of homes near by,' says Robert Adley, a Home Counties buying agent. </p><p>For individuals seizing the chance to convert, there are advantages. You can reclaim some VAT from the work (see the VAT refunds section at gov.uk) and estate agents say good-quality conversions of more unusual buildings with a local history often sell for a premium. </p><p>On a larger scale, some of Britain's biggest conversions will begin in London in the next few years following this month's announcement that Billingsgate, New Spitalfields and Smithfield markets are to be consolidated under one roof, freeing up the historic buildings for homes.</p><p>Hertfordshire: Four bedrooms, beautiful views and large gardens.</p><p>Once a Victorian congregational chapel, this is now a home right on the village green in Sandon, near Baldock. It has four bedrooms, beautiful views and large gardens. </p><p>Wiltshire: a roof terrace with views to Salisbury Cathedral.</p><p>Start a new chapter of your life in this three bedroom duplex apartment which was once a city centre bookshop. There's even a roof terrace with views to Salisbury Cathedral. </p><p>The General is the city's former hospital, now transformed into a collection of one, two and three bed apartments — contemporary living in a listed landmark in the city centre. </p><p>Do you want to automatically post your MailOnline comments to your Facebook Timeline?</p><p>Your comment will be posted to MailOnline as usual.</p><p>Do you want to automatically post your MailOnline comments to your Facebook Timeline?</p><p> We will automatically post your comment and a link to the news story to your Facebook timeline at the same time it is posted on MailOnline. To do this we will link your MailOnline account with your Facebook account. We’ll ask you to confirm this for your first post to Facebook.</p><p>Part of the Daily Mail, The Mail on Sunday &amp; Metro Media Group</p>

    1 August 17, 2018

Comments

Earn free bitcoin