Warehouse conversions have become one of the hottest trends in property, especially in east London. What originally started out as a cheap and spacious place for artists to live in New York City has now become a high value, quality investment, with many warehouses being sold for millions. Here are some of our top warehouse conversions…

The Tapestry Building, EC2M

Ideally located just a stone’s throw from Liverpool Street station is The Tapestry Building. Built in the 18th century by the East India Company, the building has now been converted into 14 stylish homes. This beautiful two bedroom apartment is on the third floor, with a bright and spacious dual aspect living and dining room, and a fabulously modern kitchen.

Find out more here.

Kingsland Road, E8

Quebec Wharf, a former Victorian spice warehouse, has been beautifully converted to provide spacious, chic apartments. This one bedroom property stays true to its roots, with original features such as exposed brick walls and steel pillars.

Find out more here.

King Edward’s Road, E9

One of Hackney’s most sought-after warehouse conversions, Five King Edward’s Road was formerly a 1920s clothing factory and is now home to 89 beautiful apartments with a diverse group of residents. This two bedroom penthouse offers double height ceilings, a beautiful open mezzanine level, and floor to ceiling windows letting in incredible light.

Find out more here.

Northburgh Street, EC1V

Set within a former printworks is this sleek two bedroom apartment, in the heart of the City – just around the corner from Barbican station. Arranged over 967 sq ft, it’s flooded with natural light, high ceilings and dual aspect windows.

Find out more here.

Saint John Street, EC1V

This fantastic one bedroom loft apartment is available to rent in Clerkenwell. Originally a part of the Vogue Pattern building, and then the old Ingersoll factory, the apartment has been designed to retain as many of the original industrial features as possible. The property offers over 1,000 sq ft of space and benefits from a communal roof terrace with panoramic views over London.

Find out more here.

Pentonville Road, N1

Just a short stroll from King’s Cross is this fantastic warehouse conversion on Pentonville Road. This one bedroom apartment enjoys high ceilings and a decked mezzanine level, allowing for flexible living. The property also retains a lot of original period features, such as the large industrial windows allowing for plenty of light.

Find out more here.

Annette Road, N7

Just off the vibrant Holloway Road is this beautifully modern warehouse conversion, with a spacious open-plan kitchen and reception room, two bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a private patio – perfect for entertaining.

Find out more here.

 

Small rooms are usually seen as a bit of an interior design nightmare, with not enough space to fulfill their decorating potential. This doesn’t have to be the case though; small rooms can still look stylish and spacious, with just a few tweaks. Here are our top tips for maximising space…

Pale colours

Lighter colours will open up a space, and make it seem a lot brighter. The best colour to go for is therefore white, but soft pastels will also help create the effect.

Paint the ceiling

One of the key ways to make a space look bigger is to attract attention upwards. Painting the ceiling a different colour or applying wallpaper will draw the eye upwards, giving a feeling of more height.

Hidden storage

Of course, it’s important to declutter (even if you aren’t trying to maximise your space). Hidden storage spaces like hollow coffee tables are key – keeping things out of view will free up more space in the room, making it appear less cramped.

Avoid heavy curtains

And if possible, make them the same colour as the walls so that it all blends together seamlessly. The best option is blinds, as these can be neatly rolled up out of the way during the day.

No rugs

Floor space is essential – rugs tie a room together, which is great for bigger rooms that need to feel more cosy. For smaller rooms however, rugs should generally be avoided.

Mount the TV

If it’s a living room that you’re trying to enlarge, putting the TV on the wall will free up some crucial floor space and create a sleeker effect.

Spread the light

Consider having a few different small light sources dotted around the room, instead of one large overhead light. One big overhead light creates a top-down effect, and highlights the centre of the room – which makes it seem smaller. Spreading the light out will illuminate the whole room, therefore making it seem more spacious.

Furniture with exposed legs

Exposed legs create a gap between the furniture and the floor. Creating gaps = creating space.

Get away from the wall

In the same vein, keep some furniture (e.g sofas) away from the wall slightly. The gap effect will make everything seem a lot less crammed in.

Less is more

The fewer items of furniture you have in the room, the better. Opt for larger but fewer items, instead of lots of little decorations.

Floor to ceiling shelves

As mentioned previously, one of the key ways to make a room look bigger is to draw the eye upwards. Floor to ceiling shelves will elongate the room, and if the contents are neatly organised, it will give an overall minimalist effect.

Keep some furniture low down

The rest of the furniture, however, should stay lower to the ground. Keeping furniture lower down allows for more exposed wall space.

Clear furniture

Glass or lucite furniture don’t take up too much visual space, and give an overall de-cluttered and contemporary effect.

Ditch the door

A bit of a bold move, but if it’s a communal room that you’re decorating (e.g a living room), removing the door altogether and creating an archway will open it up a lot more.

And of course, mirrors

We couldn’t forget the age old effect to making a room look bigger – mirrors. Reflections create more light and the illusion of a bigger space.

 

Over the past couple of weeks, London has been buzzing off England’s success in the World Cup. Now that we’ve scored our way into the semi-final, here’s a selection of some our fabulous properties that are close to a London stadium – so that, just like football, you can come home in style.

The Harper Building, N7

One for the Gooners – this stylish one bedroom apartment is set within a modern development just moments from Holloway Road station, and a 6 minute walk from the Emirates Stadium.

Dace Road, E3

This three bedroom split level apartment is just across the River Lea from the London Stadium, home to West Ham FC. The property has views over both the water and the football ground, and a fabulous open plan kitchen and reception room.

Old Smokehouse, E3

An iconic part of Hackney Wick’s huge regeneration plan, Old Smokehouse is a boutique development with a gym, concierge, and roof terraces. It’s also just a ten minute walk from the London Stadium.

Arklow Road, SE14

Less than a mile from The Den is Arklow Road, a stylish new development in the up and coming area of Deptford, with Help to Buy available.

The Surrey Stadium, Whyteleafe

And last but not least… an actual football stadium.

Our Commercial team are selling the freehold to the Surrey Stadium in Whyteleafe, Surrey. There’s also planning permission for additional office space, a conference room and a medical centre.

Currell Commercial have successfully let two units at 61 Wallis Road E9, either side of our Hackney Wick Fish Island office.

The first is Cornerstone, an exciting new restaurant from Tom Brownformer Head Chef at Nathan Outlaw’s Michelin star restaurant in Knightsbridge. Serving mainly seafood plates, the seasonal menu is inspired by Tom’s Cornish roots. The decor is in keeping with Hackney Wick’s industrial style, with personal touches – such as a 5000-year-old oak table, salvaged from a river in Croatia.

Our staff at the Hackney Wick Fish Island office can’t wait to try their lunch menu – although they are booking up fast, so make sure you get your reservation in quick here.

The second unit is now home to Wick Boards. They build the world’s highest quality electric skateboards, from hand crafted decks to custom built motors. Their new street facing shop will provide the perfect opportunity for local residents (as well as people from all over the UK) to try before they buy their boards.

Your hallway is the first thing you and visitors will see when you enter the house – so it’s important to get it right. Make guests feel warm and welcome with our ten top tips for jazzing up the space.

Make an impact

Dividing up your wall with a band of colour will add interest to the hallway, especially if it’s a strong contrast. Tip: paint the skirting board the same colour for both a smoother look, and to reduce the appearance of scuff marks.

Raise the temperature

If you’re struggling to decide on a paint colour, opt for a warmer shade that will make guests (and you!) feel instantly at home. Don’t go for anything too bright or garish, or it might be a bit overwhelming.

Clutter control

Hallways often become cluttered, being used as a dumping ground for shoes, coats, and umbrellas etc. Opt for some clever storage to make sure this area stays neat and tidy – seating with cushions both looks inviting, and is practical for shoe changing.

Put your best foot forward

As this is the part of the house that gets the most footfall, it’s important to invest in some strong flooring that won’t wear too easily. Tiles are the best option as they can be cleaned easily (think muddy walks and wellies, and you’ll instantly remove the carpet). Wood-effect porcelain tiles will give you the rustic, homely feeling of having wood flooring with the ease of tiles.

Add a runner

Draw the focus upstairs and add a bit more interest to the staircase with a central runner (it’s also great for covering any scuff marks).

Flower power

Seasonal flowers are a great way to set the tone and make your home feel clean, fresh, and colourful.

Mirror, mirror

As hallways can be quite narrow and dark, mirrors are a great way to open up the space, with their light-reflecting surface adding a bit of brightness and making the room seem bigger. Of course, it’s also handy for last-minute appearance checks before you leave the house!

Be scent-sational

There’s nothing worse than entering a house and being hit with a bad smell. For the ultimate first impression, make sure your home is smelling sweet and pop a reed diffuser on the cabinet.

In honour of Pride month, we interviewed David Gwinnutt, Senior Valuer at our Islington office. As well as being a prominent photographer that was recently featured in the National Portrait Gallery, David was voted no.16 on The Independent’s Pink List of top 100 most influential gay men for creating the Pink Jack.

What inspired you to become such an active ambassador for the LGBTQ community?

Despite growing up gay in the 60’s & 70’s, which was a much more prejudiced era, I was extremely fortunate and had a fairly easy time. I never doubted that being gay was OK. I always thought it was pretty cool, especially around the time of punk, when being different was a badge of honour.

What was your inspiration for the Pink Jack, and what was the response like?

I was trying to express my positive experience of being accepted, as well as my pride for being British. I think British people are really cool, especially when it comes to being gay. For example, on my travels as a young man, I’d find myself chatting to people and eventually they’d ask, ‘so have you got a girlfriend?’ and when I said ‘no I’m gay’, they’d always say, ‘oh we know someone who’s gay and he’s really nice!’. I realised that most people in the UK are cool with it on a personal level, it’s just some haters and bigoted press that try to spin it another way.

You’ve also designed a flag for the World Cup, and LGBTQ people attending in Russia. How did this come about?

I recently got in touch with the FA to see if I could help with their campaign to rid homophobia from the game. Through them I met Di Cunningham, who heads the LGBTQ England Supporters Club. Di asked me to create a design for them to take to Russia. I jumped at the chance as I’d had some ideas already.

For me, these designs are about celebrating the similarities between gay and straight people, not highlighting differences. With all the recent issues about homophobia in football and the lack of visible gay players I felt I wanted to challenge the more negative stereotypical perceptions about gay people (that they are weak, can’t catch a ball, can’t play football, etc). So I took the core element of the England badge, the Three Lions, which represents all the strong elements gay people are supposed to lack, and give them a gay twist. After all, what’s more fearsome than a rainbow lion?

Where did you first develop your passion for photography?

David’s portrait of Cerith Wyn Evans

In the studio of artist Brian Clarke in Moorgate, where I was crashing on the sofa and being a general layabout and freeloader. He had lots of photography books and I was fascinated by them. I thought I understood it as an art and felt I could do it.

My mum got me an Olympus Trip Instamatic camera, the one David Bailey advertised, and I started taking pictures. I did a series of images of a shower hose laid out in the bathtub looking all arty with the organic natural line of the hose in contrast to the more rectangular non-organic shape of the bath. Brian saw them and said he thought they showed potential and he encouraged me to take it further. So I applied to art school and went to Hornsey School of Art, which coincidentally is not far from where I’m now working.

What would you say are the most important or prevalent issues affecting the LGBTQ community today?

There’s still a lot of prejudice, whether it’s being rejected by your family or being hanged in Iran. I, or any LGBTQ person, can still be legitimately killed in Nigeria just for being who we are. There’s a long way to go for basic human rights around the world but in the UK, which is more culturally liberal, it’s mad to think some kids still can’t come out to their parents without fear of being abused or made homeless.

What advice would you give to a young person struggling with coming out?

Start slowly, and tell maybe just one very trusted person. And never think that it’s a negative thing.

With famous artist Maggie Hambling

How much have attitudes changed towards LGBTQ people in the past 20 years?

Hugely! We have equal rights at work – you can’t be sacked for being gay. We can get married and we’re more visible and therefore ‘normalised’ on TV. I meet gay couples on property viewings who have their adopted kids with them and I see gay couples holding hands or kissing around Islington. What’s weird is that I see this is society moving ahead of me, as I’m from a different era. I can enjoy it and enjoy seeing it, but it’s moving forward regardless of me and it gives me hope for the future.

This morning, Currell had the pleasure of attending Bisnow’s Future of East London event, hosted at the new Goodluck Hope development in the heart of the Docklands.

In true east London fashion, the event was held in a warehouse, with guests walking through a mini rainforest to get to the sales and marketing suite. The event was very fascinating, despite the cold weather!

Model of City Island (far end) and Goodluck Hope (closest), sister developments by Ballymore

The event consisted of a breakfast networking session, followed by two panel discussions.

The first was about east London as a true melting pot of culture, education and business – and what this means for developers. Some interesting points were raised by all panelists, who agreed that east London is one of the fastest changing and most diverse areas of London. With this in mind, investment in education and creative industries are key, with a particular focus on prioritising opportunities for local residents, especially young people.

The first discussion panel

Tim Reeve, COO of the Victoria and Albert Museum, discussed the new V&A East which is set to open in the Olympic Park in 2023. With east London being home to some of the poorest boroughs in the country, he discussed how to reconnect with their audience, especially with young people through the education syllabus. V&A East will differ hugely to the original V&A in South Kensington – with a completely different tone, presenting art in a way that is useful and accessible to young local people that want to pursue a career in the creative industries.

Another interesting point was raised about tourism, and the influx of people coming to stay in the east as opposed to central London. Elli Jafari, Managing Director of The Curtain hotel in Shoreditch, said that she’s seen tremendous amounts of interest from all sectors of tourism – not just young people coming to London for leisure. Professionals travelling for business who are used to staying at five star hotels in the City are now now willing to venture to the outer edges, and say they loved staying in Shoreditch.

Walking through the City Island development

The second panel talk focused on work spaces in east London. Although east London offices have traditionally been synonymous with trendy startups, creatives, and tech companies, this is beginning to change. Georgina Philippou, COO of the Financial Conduct Authority, discussed her company’s move to their brand new office space in the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in Stratford. East London seems to be the most favourable place to build new places to work, as there’s much more land to build on, instead of trying to cram workers into pre-existing spaces.

The topic of wellness among working people was also discussed. Jacob Loftus, Founder & CEO at General Projects, talked about the emphasis developers are now placing on wellbeing for staff. Beyond the standard measures such as healthy food and fitness facilities, the focus is now shifting to accommodate mental health as well as physical. Outdoor spaces, relaxation/meditation areas, and a general attention to natural environments and comforts are coming to the forefront, as people are encouraged to take breaks from their screens and focus their minds elsewhere.

All in all, the event was a great insight into the different industries that are shaping east London’s revival, and we look forward to what’s to come in the future.

Consider government schemes

The Help to Buy ISA, Help to Buy London, Equity Loan, and Shared Ownership are all government backed schemes aimed at helping people get on the property ladder.

Shared ownership is less well known, but is a great way of buying a home if you can’t afford the mortgage on 100% of a home. With shared ownership, you can purchase a percentage of the property (between 25% and 75%) and pay rent on the remaining share. You can buy larger shares later on if you can afford it.

You can browse our shared ownership properties here.

Use a local estate agent

Estate agents that are based in the local area will of course know a lot about it – and its many benefits. They will know the transport links, the best schools, and what the property market is like in the area. This will be extremely beneficial when buying your property; after all, you’re not just buying a home, but the area it’s in too.

Be realistic about your budget

Before you even look for a property, it’s important to set a budget. You’ll need to make sure you can afford your monthly repayments to have your mortgage approved, and the checks have become stricter. Lenders will not only check if you can afford the repayments in your current financial situation, but will also ‘stress test’ to see if you will still be able to afford it if inflation rates go up, or if your circumstances change (e.g having a baby).

Budget for the other costs

As well as the mortgage, you’ll also need to factor in:

  • Survey costs
  • Solicitor’s fees
  • Removal costs
  • Buildings insurance
  • Furniture and decoration
  • Mortgage arrangement and valuation fees
  • Stamp Duty

Get on the electoral roll

As a precaution against fraud, lenders will check that you’re on the electoral roll when deciding whether or not to lend to you. So if you haven’t already, get registered.

Read the small print

When you make an application for a mortgage, be sure to read the small print and make sure everything sounds correct. If you spot an issue after the application has been sent, this could harm your credit rating. Every application you make leaves a record, and lots of applications in a short time period may be a red flag for fraud, resulting in bad credit.

Compare the market

As well as shopping around for your mortgage, make sure you compare property prices in the local area. Have a look at what similar properties were sold for, and how much their prices have changed over the years. This will give you an idea of how much you can sell it for in the future, as well as how much you should be paying now.

The past couple of years have seen a massive resurgence in eco-friendly shopping, and a dedication from many to start living a more sustainable lifestyle. If you’re looking to live more green- where better to start than at home? We’ve scoured the internet for our top picks of ethical homeware…

Soy Candle, Be Good Shop

Vegan friendly, chemical free, and made from 100% natural soy wax, this Nathalie Bond Organics candle fills your home with the sweetest scents, totally guilt-free. Even the container is green – the candle comes in a recycled glass jar, and is handmade in the UK.

Shop here.

Deep Sea Lampshade, The Maker Place

Designed and handmade in Kent by illustrator Emily Jepps, this beautiful screenprinted lampshade is made from 100% organic cotton. It’s also suitable for both pendant and lamp bases.

Shop here.

Geo Vessel, Secrets of Green

Secrets of Green’s geo vessels are individually handmade from sustainable and responsibly sourced plywood. They ensure that waste is kept at a minimum and use non-toxic paint and varnish.

Shop here.

Ceramic Coasters, Lusophile

This set of six ceramic coasters are hand crafted from pure white clay, and individually hand painted. The colours are perfect for a fresh, spring look – a perfect addition to any coffee table.

Shop here.

Organic Cotton Duvet Set, Ethical.market

Ethical.market’s duvet covers are fair trade, ethically sourced and produced in good working conditions in Jaipur. Staff here are on permanent contracts, with pensions and many additional benefits. They’re made from 100% organic cotton, and are of high-end hotel quality – so both your body and conscience can rest easy.

Shop here.

Stainless Steel Straws, Buy Me Once

Straws are one of the most widely consumed types of single use plastic, which many people and businesses are opting to stop using. Introduce this into your home with these stainless steel straws, which are BPA free and non-toxic (with no metallic taste!). They also come with a handy cleaning brush, and are dishwasher friendly.

Shop here.

Chai Organic Soap, The Future Kept

Made by the London Fields Soap Company with a beautiful combination of essential oils and black tea, this bar smells good and does good. It’s palm oil free, vegetarian, and 98% organic. It also comes in plastic-free packaging, and is manufactured in Hackney.

Shop here.

Linen Cushion, Aerende

Each of Aerende’s cushion covers (designed by Rosie Birkett) combines style and sustainability. They’re made from upcycled velvet and linen, and are cut and sewn at home by refugee women who have been rehoused in the UK and are receiving support from the Refugee Council (more info about this here).

Shop here.

Hexagon Mirror/Terrarium, House of Kind

These mirrors can also double up as terrariums or storage for make-up/jewellery. Each one is designed and made by an independent artist (called Fiona), and is handcrafted using glass and copper, which can be recycled and reused.

Shop here.

The bank holiday weekend is fast approaching. Whether you’re throwing a barbecue, cocktail party, or just looking to get your garden ship-shape for summer – we’ve got some tips to quickly fix up your green space.

Take a seat

Updating your seating area with new cushions or a parasol can give it a fresh look, especially if you add a pop of colour. Don’t forget to scrub down the tables and chairs, too.

Hang out

Hanging baskets are back into fashion in a big way. Opt for a traditional basket, or a more trendy terrarium for a quick floral fix without having to get your hands too dirty.

Light it up

As the evening draws in, nothing adds a more homely vibe than some tealights. Reuse some jam jars for a free and planet-friendly option.

Spruce up the shed

If your shed’s looking a bit worse for wear, don’t let it ruin the atmosphere. Have a declutter and a spring clean, and give the outside a lick of paint – we’d recommend a soft pastel for summer. Once the inside’s spick and span, and depending on how many power tools you own, you can even decorate indoors to create an additional seating area.

Loving lavender

Lavender provides the perfect scented backdrop for summer evenings outdoors. If you don’t have time to plant some, buy a few sprigs and wrap them in string. Add this to a jar or basket for a summery centrepiece that looks and smells good.

Don’t forget the front…

Take a photo of your front porch, and you’d be surprised to see how many little details you notice as you go past every day. Make sure you tidy up, mow any lawn space you have out the front, and decorate with a pot plant or a new welcome mat.