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Meet our Guardians
It could be the opportunity to live in an amazing property, the chance to save money to fulfil a dream, the ability to do the work they love or to just live a more fulfilling life – the lower costs and range of quirky properties available to guardians make it a great lifestyle option.
Guardians secure a building by living in it. It could be a country mansion, a factory, a school or a hospital The trade off is the guardian may have to move at a month’s notice but gets to live in an unusual building on a license at typically 30-50% less than renting.
The landlord has the assurance of knowing the building is being looked after. Occupied buildings deter vandals and squatters and any problems such as leaks are picked up quickly.
Camelot’s property guardians vary in age although the typical guardian is aged between 25-45 and there are slightly more men than women. All guardians are carefully vetted with the company taking up both financial and work references. And guardians sign up to a strict set of rules including no smoking in the buildings and no parties.
People have an image of properties such as the hospital featured in Channel 4s comedy Crashing or the horror stories of leaking factories in disrepair featured in the tabloids.
However for Camelot the reality is very different. They have been providing guardian services for more than 20 years and have a large portfolio of properties outside London, across the UK. These include historic buildings in city centres, large Georgian and Victorian buildings in the countryside as well as former government and industrial buildings.
All of the buildings that Camelot manage have to be watertight with electricity and water. If the property does not have showers, toilets or kitchens these will be installed before guardians move in.
Guardians opt for this lifestyle for very different reasons. A number of guardians have shared with us their experiences...
- The bank executive - Twenty seven year old Stefan is a graduate from University of Bradford who works in banking in Leeds
- The legal eagle - Sheffield-born Joseph was looking for a property in the city centre at an affordable cost.
- The city girl living in the countryside - City girl Lisa had always lived in Bristol until she was tempted to become a guardian by a rural mansion nestling in the rolling Mendips.
- The Circus performers and the factory - The former factory sits on a 10 acre site in a suburb on the outskirts of Bristol.
- The long term guardian - Gary has been a guardian for several years and has lived in three different properties.