Here we go again. Tiny flat attracts offer of pounds 410,000

CRUMBLING, IT may be. Damp, certainly. But there is one thing the bijou artist's studio is definitely, absolutely not. "It's not a garden shed," its joint owner, Michael Plaut, said adamantly yesterday.

Perhaps his insistence was understandable, given that he hopes to sell the property for some pounds 400,000.

In fairness to Mr Plaut, those who used the S-word to describe the property just off Kensington High Street were being less than generous. Nevertheless, the interior of the bachelor-pad-sized property has the interior design values of a garden lean-to.

Even with the reserve price of pounds 325,000, when the property is auctioned in a fortnight's time, the buyer will have to find at least another pounds 100,000 for redecoration. Peeling paint, broken floorboards and large damp patches are the key fixtures of a place that has seen no maintenance since its elderly occupant, an artist, died.

What Mr Plaut really needs is a banker with the soul of an artist. He insists such a person does exist - a City bachelor has already mooted a pounds 410,000 purchase price.

Passing the tiny pink door sandwiched between the redbrick building and white stuccoed house which tower over it, you could be forgiven for dismissing it as, well, a shed. But the corridor behind the door emerges into a studio with a 28ft ceiling and large skylights. At 31ft by 22ft, the room is certainly big enough to convert.

And the estate agents' mantra "location, location, location" covers a multitude of sins. "Imagination, imagination, imagination," is what is really required, insists Mr Plaut's wife, Sarah Sharma, as she whirls around, describing delightful, if rather expensive, renovations: a mezzanine bedroom with a glass front, a tubular shower and a circular graphite staircase.

Upstairs, even more imagination is required.

Mr Plaut, a record producer, and Ms Sharma bought the place two years ago for a sum they politely decline to disclose. "I fell in love with it. I am an artist and I can see the potential," said Ms Sharma. "It is not just the location - it is tucked away and private. It is shocking what you find behind that little door. It is like walking into a little heaven." Perhaps not. But certainly the place is enticing enough to attract potential buyers willing to shell out a third of a million on what is effectively two derelict rooms.

An impending baby has forced the couple to swap the spartan space in a prime location for something more sensible. You can see the regret in Ms Sharma's eyes when she reveals they are now considering a suburban, three-bedroom house. Still, for pounds 300,000-pounds 400,000 the couple will be able to settle with some style.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Voices
Lucerne’s Hotel Château Gütsch, one of the lots in our Homeless Veterans appeal charity auction
charity appeal
Sport
Brendan Rodgers is confident that Sterling will put pen to paper on a new deal at Anfield
footballLIVE: Follow all the latest from tonight's Capital One quarter-finals
Life and Style
A woman walks by a pandal art installation entitled 'Mars Mission' with the figure of an astronaut during the Durga Puja festival in Calcutta, India
techHow we’ll investigate the existence of, and maybe move in with, our alien neighbours
Arts and Entertainment
Tony Hughes (James Nesbitt) after his son Olly disappeared on a family holiday in France
tv
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksNow available in paperback
News
people

Jo from Northern Ireland was less than impressed by Russell Brand's attempt to stage a publicity stunt

Voices
Jimmy Mubenga died after being restrained on an aircraft by G4S escorts
voicesJonathan Cox: Tragedy of Jimmy Mubenga highlights lack of dignity shown to migrants
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels ride again in Dumb and Dumber To
filmReview: Dumb And Dumber To was a really stupid idea
Life and Style
tech
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Ashdown Group: Helpdesk Analyst

£25000 per annum: Ashdown Group: An established media firm based in Surrey is ...

Ashdown Group: Java Developer - Hertfordshire - £47,000 + bonus + benefits

£40000 - £470000 per annum + bonus: Ashdown Group: Java Developer / J2EE Devel...

Ashdown Group: Head of Finance - Financial Director - London - £70,000

£70000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Head of Finance - Financial Controller - Fina...

Recruitment Genius: Business Development Executive - Nationwide - OTE £65,000

£30000 - £65000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This small technology business ...

Day In a Page

Calls for a military mental health 'quality mark'

Homeless Veterans campaign

Expert calls for military mental health 'quality mark'
Racton Man: Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman

Meet Racton Man

Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman
Garden Bridge: St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters

Garden Bridge

St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters
Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament: An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel

Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament

An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel
Joint Enterprise: The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice

Joint Enterprise

The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice
Freud and Eros: Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum: Objects of Desire

Freud and Eros

Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum
France's Front National and the fear of a ‘gay lobby’ around Marine Le Pen

Front National fear of ‘gay lobby’

Marine Le Pen appoints Sébastien Chenu as cultural adviser
'Enhanced interrogation techniques?' When language is distorted to hide state crimes

Robert Fisk on the CIA 'torture report'

Once again language is distorted in order to hide US state wrongdoing
Radio 1’s new chart host must placate the Swifties and Azaleans

Radio 1 to mediate between the Swifties and Azaleans

New chart host Clara Amfo must placate pop's fan armies
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'It's life, and not the Forces, that gets you'

Homeless Veterans appeal: 'It's life, and not the Forces, that gets you'

The head of Veterans Aid on how his charity is changing perceptions of ex-servicemen and women in need
Torture: It didn't work then, it doesn't work now

Torture: It didn't work then, it doesn't work now

Its use is always wrong and, despite CIA justifications post 9/11, the information obtained from it is invariably tainted, argues Patrick Cockburn
Rebranding Christmas: More public bodies are refusing to give the festival its name for fear of causing offence

Rebranding Christmas

More public bodies are refusing to give the festival its name for fear of causing offence. They are missing the point, and we all need to grow up
A Greek island - yours for the price of a London flat

A sun-kissed island - yours for the price of a London flat

Cash-strapped Greeks are selling off their slices of paradise
Pogues could enjoy fairytale Christmas No 1 thanks to digital streaming

Pogues could enjoy fairytale Christmas No 1 thanks to digital streaming

New system means that evergreen songs could top the festive charts
Prince of Wales: Gruff Rhys on his rock odyssey, and the trouble with independence

Prince of Wales: Gruff Rhys

He is a musician of wondrous oddity. He is on a perpetual quest to seek the lost tribes of the Welsh diaspora. Just don't ask Gruff Rhys if he's a national treasure...