Woman who couldn't afford London property builds herself a luxury houseboat worth £182,000

She earns a six-figure salary but couldn't afford London property prices

Chelsea Ritschel
Tuesday 08 May 2018 17:23
My Floating Home: reality show charts families' journey building 'aquatic homes' - trailer

With property prices in London continuing to increase, one woman took matters into her own hands and built her own floating dream home.

Karen Boswell, a 35-year-old advertising executive, designed and built her houseboat, which she named Maybe Tomorrow, in just four months.

And the vessel isn’t a shabby abode either - Boswell’s 70ft-long houseboat includes a king-sized bed, two bedrooms, concrete countertops in the kitchen, high ceilings, and a bathroom with a double shower.

Speaking to The Times, Boswell revealed that before building the houseboat, she struggled to afford property in London - despite earning a six-figure salary.

When a friend suggested a houseboat as an alternative, Boswell realised she could save a significant amount of money if she created her own home.

“I could have afforded a two-bed place in a not-great area or a studio or one-bed somewhere I wouldn't be stabbed walking home, but I wouldn't have had any wiggle room to put a finish on it,” she told The Times of her deposit savings.

So despite her preconception of boats as “weird and cramped,” Boswell decided to give it a try, putting down a deposit of just under £50,000.

Houseboats are an affordable option for homeowners (My Floating Home)

The advertising executive took out a marine mortgage, which she’ll pay off in just five years, and purchased her new home, a 12ft-wide empty vessel for £120,000.

Boswell had to take out a £20,000 loan to decorate the interior, which she described as “nautical modern chic,” but it was worth it - as the boat is now worth £30,000 more than she paid for it.

Houseboats are a luxury living option for a fraction of the cost of regular property (My Floating Home)

Now, Boswell pays £8,000 a year to keep the houseboat docked in a private marina in the Grand Union Canal in north-west London and a yearly fee of £3,000 for electricity and a three-yearly hull treatment, which she admits are "not cheap," but worth it.

As for transportation, Boswell plans to invest in a kayak so she can get from her boat to the supermarket or pub.

Boswell’s luxury London houseboat will be featured on the new reality show My Floating Home on More 4 tonight, which follows families as they build their aquatic dream homes.

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