A builder who took a gamble and forked out £68,000 on a former water tank told today how turned it into a luxury home – worth £1 MILLION.
John Bollard, 62, bought the water tank in 2002, as a project for himself and has now turned it into a lavish dream home.
Mr Bollard, single-handedly transformed the water tank, which once held 200,000 gallons of water, into a modern five-bedroom home.
He said: “I wanted some land to build a house. I am a builder and have built houses before, then my partner saw this water tank advertisement in the paper.
“I went along and had a look and thought it would be a nice project to do, despite people at the time saying it was too much hard work.”
Mr Bollard, from, Kingskerswell in Devon, put a 10 per cent deposit of £10,000 in the post and later found out he had won the tank for £68,000 on a sealed bid, so he began work immediately.
He added: “I moved 5,000 tonnes of earth to get into the place and then exposed the walls.
“After that we did mostly everything by hand, we didn’t want to shake the place up with heavy diggers so just started hammering.
“Each wall was nine metres thick, so the job took longer than expected, but me and my partner finally moved in in 2004.
“Once we had moved in I asked the council if I could build and extension on top of the house, but they refused.
“I then got an architect to draw some plans up for me and he managed to get them to go through, so I built the extension on the top which took two years.”
Before the extension was completed at the home in Kingskerswell, Mr Bollard had his home priced at £500,000 to £750,000.
However, now the extension is complete, he believes his fully furnished two-storey home is now worth at least £1,000,000, giving him a massive profit of £775,000.
He said: “If you put in the work and get the place built by yourself, it is bound to be cheaper and the surprising thing was that how much profit we could make on it in such a short amount of time.
“It is in about an acre of land and it is private, it is on the highest position there is and we have a 360 degree view, we can even see the sea.
“I would say I have spent around 225,000 in total on the house, that is including the tank.
“It is two storeys, has five bedrooms and three on suites downstairs.
“It is like an upside down house, the kitchen is upstairs and the lounge and a utility room and a study.
“With the extension, I doubled the size, it was a big extension, we added a balcony on each side too, a big lounge, huge kitchen, it really is quite big.
“I am glad I got the tank, going through the process I thought what have I done here, it was hard but at the end of the day I am glad I did it now, it is brilliant.”
Mr Bollard’s partner, Anne-Marie Tremaine, 60, said: “It took him months to get into the tank so it was a real job to break into it.
“Now it is complete it is like a dream, we are so high up and it looks great, it is phenomenal, the views are breath-taking.
“The space is great too, the kitchen is huge, as is the lounge, it really is lovely, a true joy and it is very private, I love it.
“John has the patient of a saint because it has not been an easy building to work on, mainly due to the walls being so thick.
“I am so proud of him, he is such a clever guy. He has done it basically all himself but he is immensely focused at what he does and has come up with a terrific building which really is beautiful.”