A house boat is one of the least conventional properties on the market yet the floating lifestyle still entices many homeowners, even in the city.
Londoners are taking up the house boat lifestyle grabbing a central city location with the space and privacy of a rural abode.
“There are two types of house boat owners,” Carl Davenport, associate director at Chesterton Humberts said.
“There are people who want the day to day use of a boat and the home is an extra.
“Or there are those who view it mentally as a home and enjoy the novelty of it being a boat that can be moved.”
Mr Davenport’s estate agency is currently listing its second house boat property, the Johanna Elisabeth moored at South Dock Marina, London.
It is a relatively new trend to see estate agents sell boat properties and one that has taught Mr Davenport the ins and outs of the floating lifestyle.
“I think more people are open to buying them [boat properties] because more agents are now dealing with them,” he said.
“It is not an investment that is going to dramatically increase in value.
“But you can get a great location and just disconnect and go for a ride and come back again like parking.”
The pros to a boat property are numerous when it comes to the lifestyle.
Boat homeowners get increased privacy because there are no neighbours above or below to contend with.
Increased space is a positive, especially in the middle of the city where outdoor areas are a rare commodity.
For example the Johanna Elisabeth shares its location with the apartment blocks of Canary Wharf and Docklands yet it has more than 25 metres in length of outdoor space.
Most boats pay no council tax or VAT and there is the obvious ability to detach from a mooring and take your home on your holiday.
But Mr Davenport said this romantic idea of a house boat can become tinted once costs are taken into account.
“The square footage you get for your money is a pro but the yearly rates are high,” he said.
The Johanna Elisabeth has a central London location, costs £325,000 and has two bedrooms, one bathroom, a dining room, kitchen and reception room plus outdoor space.
“It would cost double this for a normal flat the same size in London,” he said.
Yet the yearly costs of a house boat can reach £7, 000 per year or more.
The fees change depending on where the boat is moored plus a residential fee must be paid to live on the boat.
On top of this repairs can be expensive and every house boat has to have a periodic survey done to ensure it is sea worthy which can cost up to £5, 000 each time.
“But it does come with all of the home comforts, mod cons and show-off appeal,” he said.
According to Mr Davenport people are still lining up to buy a boat property despite the output of money.
Most of the people interested in this type of property are trail blazers and those looking for an alternative lifestyle while still working in the city.
“It is a real twist on living in an apartment,” he said.
To see more about the Johanna Elisabeth visit the Chesterton Humberts website.