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The Independent Online
Househunter Cowden, Kent

Join a list of 600 interested parties for Furnace Mill, a magnificent property in need of new everything. The 16th-century house nestles at the end of a quiet country lane on the Kent/Sussex border, in seven acres of landscaped gardens. A barn with a dilapidated dance floor is included with the house, which has six bedrooms and three reception rooms. A pair of cottages, a lake and a paddock are all available separately. Strutt & Parker in Lewes (01273 475411) has set a guide price of pounds 350,000 for the main lot and is asking for best and final offers by noon on 17 October.

For what it's worth

According to Dominic Grace of Savills, there are now five attributes that buyers in London seek in a property: 1) good location 2) long lease 3) parking 4) good-quality construction and 5) security. Gone, he says, are the days when buyers looked benignly on chipped stucco, bowed walls and rattling sash windows. His colleague Ian Stewart says a similar trend is emerging in the country, where buyers want period features and room sizes, but also efficiency and low maintenance. Other essentials are a good location and peace and quiet. He predicts that the modern country house will become increasingly popular.

Who's moving

Portrait artist Henry Mee, who last week unveiled his depiction of the Princess of Wales, is selling his immaculately restored Greek Revival Regency villa in Lloyd Square, London WC1, to move to the country. The four-storey, four-bedroom house, with access to the private garden square, is being sold by Hamptons with an asking price of pounds 635,000.