Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Hotel Luxury for Less; If You Need a Home in a Hurry, Serviced Apartments Are the Perfect Short-Term Solution, Says Rosalind Russell Homes & Property

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Hotel Luxury for Less; If You Need a Home in a Hurry, Serviced Apartments Are the Perfect Short-Term Solution, Says Rosalind Russell Homes & Property

Article excerpt

Byline: ROSALIND RUSSELL

FACED with the choice of losing the home they wanted to buy in Kew, or hanging onto their buyer and moving into rented accommodation for a while, Lucy and Tim Hayne decided it was no contest. In a soft market, they couldn't afford to pull out of their chain and hope another buyer for their Chiswick town house would come along later. It had been on the market for five months already.

The Haynes' buyer was ready to move, and so, with their first baby due to arrive in April, the Haynes prepared to put their belongings into storage.

But they didn't want to be tied into the normal six month-minimum letting contract.

"I couldn't face living in a hotel for weeks," says Lucy, 32.

"I am at home during the day and Tim works as a session musician. I looked at the hotels in Chiswick, but they were expensive. They had suites for [pounds sterling]110 a night, but I didn't want to live in just one room for a month, or possibly longer. I looked on the internet and found a serviced apartment in Richmond.

It was in a modern, gated development, had a TV and DVD player, as well as a kitchen, so I could cook our meals. It worked out cheaper than a hotel and we weren't tied into a long contract."

Operated by a serviced lets company called Deep Blue, the ground-floor apartment that the Haynes chose costs [pounds sterling]695 a week; the price is dependent on the length of stay. The cost of a suite in a four-star hotel in Richmond (the equivalent standard of the apartment) would be [pounds sterling]787 a week.

The Haynes ended up staying in the serviced apartment for just three weeks, as the log jam in the chain suddenly shifted and they were able to exchange and complete on their new property in one day.

The Haynes' story is not untypical, says Steve Brenman, of Kingston-based Deep Blue. …

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