Create Your Dream Home: For Sale - Ex-Fuel Barge 'Eileena' with Houseboat Construction Potential
Posted on 10th January 2024
Create Your Dream Home: For Sale - Ex-Fuel Barge 'Eileena' with Houseboat Construction Potential
Would make an ideal houseboat opportunity.
Rivetted 30m length x 6.5m beam
Huge hold with 3m+ headroom.
Scope for a new wheelhouse if required.
Engine and tanks removed.
1930 Built by De Noord NV Industrieel, Maats, Alblasserdam, Holland.
Location: Turks Shipyard, Medway, Kent, UK
Direct Sale (No Broker)
Imagine the rhythmic lapping of the River Thames against a storied barge that has seen the ebb and flow of history. Now picture yourself transforming this vessel with a valiant past into a unique and affordable floating home. The Eileena barge, once a fuel transporter, is now up for grabs, and it's an opportunity that beckons the imaginative and the innovative. Let's dive into the journey of Eileena, from its industrious origins to its current potential as a houseboat.
Article-at-a-Glance: Eileena Barge's Journey from Fuel Service to Houseboat Potential
Discover Eileena's rich history as a fuel barge on the River Thames.
Explore the transformation potential from a working barge to a characterful houseboat.
Learn about the vital statistics that make Eileena a unique investment.
Understand the economic and lifestyle benefits of converting a barge into a home.
Find out how you can become the proud owner of a piece of maritime history.
Eileena's Storied Past
Every vessel has a tale to tell, and Eileena is no exception. Crafted in 1930 by De Noord NV Industrieel, Maats, in Alblasserdam, Holland, this riveted barge was built to last. It's a testament to the engineering prowess of its time, designed to navigate the challenging waters of the River Thames and beyond.
Origin and History
From the moment it was launched, Eileena was destined for hard work. As a fuel barge, it was an essential cog in the maritime industry, ensuring the smooth operation of commerce along the river. Its robust build and reliable performance made it a familiar sight to those who depended on its services.
But Eileena was more than just a workhorse. Its presence on the Thames linked it to the lifeblood of London, a city that has always depended on its river for survival and prosperity. Through the decades, Eileena's steel frame has withstood the test of time, proving its durability and quality craftsmanship.
Service on the River Thames During Wartime
During World War II, Eileena served a higher purpose. It was repurposed as a barrage balloon barge, a critical defence mechanism against enemy aircraft. Anchored in the Thames estuary, it played a part in protecting the skies over London. This chapter of its history adds a layer of gravitas to its already impressive resume.
It's not every day that one gets the chance to own a piece of history that has not only served in peacetime commerce but also in the defence of a nation. Eileena's wartime service is a badge of honor, a narrative that will captivate visitors and imbue your floating home with a sense of historical significance.
Vital Statistics of Eileena
Now, let's talk specifics. Eileena is a sizable vessel, measuring 30 meters in length and 6.5 meters in beam. This provides a spacious canvas for any conversion project. Imagine the possibilities: a sprawling living area, multiple bedrooms, or even a studio space — the choice is yours.
With the engine and tanks removed, the barge's hold is a blank slate. It boasts over 3 meters of headroom, offering ample vertical space for a comfortable interior design. The potential for a new wheelhouse also exists, should you wish to steer your home to new horizons.
Most importantly, Eileena has been given a new lease on life through professional restoration efforts. The hull has been shot blasted to SA 2.5, a process that thoroughly cleans the steel and prepares it for coating. This meticulous preparation is crucial for the longevity of the vessel.
Furthermore, the hull has been overplated with 6mm SJ275 plate up to the waterline, ensuring structural integrity. It's then been coated with two layers of marine epoxy paint, followed by top coats that amount to approximately 300 microns of dry film thickness. This attention to detail in preservation means that Eileena is not just a relic; it's a robust platform ready for a new chapter.
In the next sections, we'll delve deeper into the transformation process, the investment opportunity, and how you can take the helm of this historical vessel. So, stay tuned as we chart the course for an affordable and unique home on the water.
Dimensions and Size
Let's get a sense of scale for Eileena. At 30 meters long, it's about the length of a blue whale, the largest animal on Earth. Its 6.5-meter beam, or width, is slightly wider than a large SUV. Inside, the hold opens up to over 3 meters of vertical space — that's taller than a basketball hoop. With these dimensions, Eileena offers an expansive space that rivals many city apartments and some suburban homes.
Previous Modifications and Current State
Before we consider the future, it's important to acknowledge the past work that's been done on Eileena. The removal of the engine and fuel tanks was a significant alteration, creating a vast open space within the hold. This change is critical because it means that the barge is no longer suited for its original purpose but is primed for transformation.
The shot blasting and overplating of the hull are also noteworthy. These modifications not only extend the life of the barge but also provide a sturdy foundation for further renovation. The professional paint job is the icing on the cake, protecting Eileena from the elements and giving it a fresh, clean look.
Transitioning from Fuel Barge to Houseboat
Now, let's talk about the exciting part: turning Eileena from an ex-fuel barge into a dream houseboat. The transition from industrial use to residential living is a journey that requires vision, creativity, and a bit of elbow grease.
Potential for Conversion
The potential for converting Eileena into a houseboat is immense. The open hold can be segmented into multiple rooms or left as one large living space. The height allows for the installation of a second floor or mezzanine, effectively doubling your living area. And because you're starting with a blank canvas, you can design the layout to suit your lifestyle perfectly.
Whether you're a solo adventurer seeking a minimalist dwelling or a family looking for an unconventional home with room to grow, Eileena can accommodate your needs. The barge's size and structure are conducive to a variety of floor plans and amenities, from the essential to the luxurious.
Design and Renovation Ideas
Here's where you can let your imagination set sail. Consider these design ideas as a starting point for your houseboat conversion:
Loft-style Living: Embrace the open-concept trend by creating a spacious loft with high ceilings, large windows, and an open kitchen.
Multi-story Marvel: Use the height to your advantage by constructing a split-level design, with bedrooms on one level and living spaces on another.
Eco-friendly Elements: Incorporate solar panels, a rainwater collection system, and other sustainable features to minimize your ecological footprint.
Outdoor Oasis: Allocate space on the deck for a garden, dining area, or simply a spot to enjoy the views and fresh air.
Modern Amenities: Just because you're on the water doesn't mean you can't have modern comforts. Plan for fully equipped bathrooms, a state-of-the-art kitchen, and cosy heating solutions.
Remember, the beauty of converting a barge like Eileena is that you're not constrained by typical homebuilding rules. You have the freedom to create something truly unique that reflects your personality and meets your needs. So, grab your sketchbook, start dreaming, and soon you could be the proud owner of a floating home that's the envy of landlubbers everywhere.
When we talk about investment, it's not just about the financial returns; it's also about the value added to your life. Repurposing a barge like Eileena into a houseboat is an investment in a lifestyle—a sustainable, unique, and potentially cost-effective way of living. But let's break it down to see why this is a smart financial move as well.
Economic Benefits of Repurposing Barges
Firstly, the cost of buying and converting a barge is often significantly lower than purchasing a house in a city. You're essentially getting the square footage at a fraction of the price. Moreover, the ongoing expenses can be less too. Mooring fees, for instance, are typically lower than property taxes, and maintenance costs can be managed effectively with the right know-how.
There's also the potential for appreciation in value. A well-maintained and tastefully converted barge can become more valuable over time, especially as waterfront living becomes more desirable. And let's not forget the rental potential. If you ever decide to travel, you could rent out your houseboat as a vacation home, offering a unique experience that could command a premium price.
Besides that, the environmental impact is a consideration for many. By repurposing an existing structure, you're reducing the demand for new building materials and minimizing your carbon footprint. This eco-conscious choice can not only save you money but also appeal to a growing segment of the market that values sustainability.
Eileena's Market Valuation
Now, let's talk numbers. Eileena is on the market for £150,000. Considering the size, history, and potential of this barge, that's a competitive price. Comparable properties on land in many areas of London or other major cities could easily cost several times that amount.
With the extensive work already done on the hull, you're starting with a vessel that's been given a new lease on life. This foundational work is a significant value add, as it means you won't have to invest as much upfront on structural repairs. This makes Eileena a smart buy for those looking to get into the houseboat lifestyle without the daunting task of extensive initial repairs.
Maintenance and Upkeep
Like any home, a houseboat requires maintenance to keep it in top condition. The good news is that with a steel-hulled vessel like Eileena, some of this work has already been taken care of, setting you up for easier maintenance down the line.
The Overplating Process and its Advantages
The overplating of Eileena's hull is a significant advantage. This process involves adding new steel plates over the old hull, which not only strengthens the structure but also extends its lifespan. The new plates are typically thicker and made of modern, corrosion-resistant steel, which means they're better equipped to withstand the elements.
Moreover, the shot blasting and application of marine epoxy paint create a barrier against rust and corrosion. This treatment is essential for the longevity of a steel-hulled vessel, especially one that's moored in freshwater, which can be harsh on metal surfaces.
Therefore, the upfront work done on Eileena means you'll have less to worry about in terms of water ingress and structural integrity. Regular inspections and touch-ups to the paintwork will be your main concern, rather than extensive overhauls, which is often the case with older vessels.
In conclusion, the investment in Eileena is not just about buying a boat; it's about securing a unique living space with character and history. With the economic benefits of repurposing a barge, the competitive market valuation, and the reduced maintenance needs thanks to the overplating process, Eileena presents a compelling opportunity for anyone looking to dive into the world of houseboats.
Long-Term Care for a Barge-Turned-Houseboat
Once you've transformed Eileena into a cosy, floating residence, maintaining its charm and functionality is key. Long-term care for a barge-turned-houseboat involves regular check-ups and a bit of TLC. Here's what you need to keep in mind:
Hull Inspections: Regularly inspect the hull for integrity. Even with the overplating, it's crucial to keep an eye out for any signs of wear or damage.
Paint Maintenance: The marine epoxy paint is your first defense against rust, so retouch any areas where the paint has chipped or worn away.
Mooring Lines and Anchorage: Check your mooring lines and anchors to ensure they're secure and not fraying. This is vital for the safety of your home.
Utilities: Plumbing, electricity, and heating systems need regular servicing to ensure they are running smoothly and efficiently.
Cleaning: A clean boat is a happy boat. Regular cleaning prevents buildup of algae and rust, and it keeps your home looking its best.
Remember, a well-maintained houseboat can last for many years, providing a unique and rewarding living experience. With the proper care, Eileena will continue to be a cherished home on the water for decades to come.
How to Acquire Eileena
So, you're interested in making Eileena your own? The process is straightforward, but it does require attention to detail. Let's walk through the steps to make this historic barge your new home.
Navigating the Purchase Process
Acquiring a houseboat is similar to buying a house, but there are some nautical nuances to consider:
Research: Start by understanding the full scope of what owning a houseboat entails, including mooring rights, insurance, and maintenance.
Financing: Look into your financing options. Some lenders specialize in houseboats, and they can offer tailored loan products.
Survey: Just like with a house, you'll want to have a marine surveyor inspect Eileena to ensure everything is in order.
Legalities: Engage a solicitor who specializes in marine law to help navigate the purchase agreement and any maritime regulations.
Completion: Once you're happy with the survey results and the legal work is done, you can complete the purchase and take ownership.
Each step is important to ensure a smooth transition and to protect your investment. Take your time, ask questions, and make sure you're comfortable before moving forward.
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Contact Information and Viewing Schedules
If Eileena has piqued your interest and you're considering a viewing, getting in touch is your next step. You can contact the seller directly to ask any preliminary questions and to schedule a visit. It's important to see the barge in person to fully appreciate its potential and to envision your life on the water.
Viewings can usually be arranged at a time that's convenient for you, but remember, a barge like Eileena may attract significant interest, so it's wise to act promptly. When you're ready to reach out, you can do so via the following contact details:
Contact for Eileena:
Phone: +44 7815 740252
Be sure to prepare a list of questions you might have about the barge, its history, and the specifics of the sale. The more informed you are, the better positioned you'll be to make a decision.
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