Written by Lisa Proffitt | 1st July 2019


Homes with Sports Appeal

With Wimbledon just around the corner and summer staycations on the rise, owning a rural property with its own tennis court or swimming pool has to be the ultimate luxury. Back in the 19th-century aristocrats built lakes and ice houses in the grounds of their country estates but today’s luxury home owners are more interested in exercise and activity.

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So what are the most sought after additions that buyers look for in their dream country home?

Tennis court

Quintessentially English, a natural grass court in your back garden is considered the ultimate status symbol. Costlier to maintain than a hard court at around £3,500a year, a grass court blends more easily into the garden, especially if there is detachable temporary netting. One of the better investments, a tennis court normally adds 50% more than its cost to the value of a country property, as long as it doesn’t dominate the garden. Ideally a tennis court is tucked out of sight behind a wall or a hedge.

Swimming pool

As with a tennis court, the setting of a swimming pool is all-important. In the 1960s and 1970s it was normal to build them just outside the sitting room window so that parents could keep an eye on their children, but now buyers prefer a pool to be set slightly away from the house and out of sight during the winter months. A ground source heat pump is the best bet for keeping running costs low – a priority for buyers of large country homes who are already wary of high running costs.

Equestrian facilities

When a move to the country is on the cards it doesn’t take long for a pony to appear on a child’s birthday or Christmas wish list. Paddocks, stables and a manege will make many country life dreams come true and if the acreage can accommodate a cross-country course all the better.


Are you fed up feeling guilty about a gym membership that you don’t actually use? For time-stretched would be gym-goers, a home gym means no more travel time and no more excuses.

Games room

Any teenagers in the family will hijack a room with a snooker/pool/table tennis table but at least you’ll know where they are.

Cinema Room

Only one thing beats watching a movie at the cinema and that’s the luxury of watching it in your own home on the big screen with surround sound and comfy seating. No interminable trailers and an easy to reach kitchen for snacks.


Specialist companies are experiencing a surge in demand for their luxury treehouses after The Duchess of Cambridge included one in her back-to-nature garden at this year’s Chelsea Flower Show. Extravagant creations from Blue Forest and High Life Treehouses can cost upwards from £200,000 and are substantial enough to be used as an adult’s summerhouse if the children ever get bored. With some coming with zip wires to the ground as standard, that’s not likely.

Party Barn

Once you make the move to the country, expect townie friends to consider your home the perfect destination for a weekend away. You’ll never be short of a gathering which makes a party barn the perfect solution for alfresco entertaining. Just add a wide screen television for summer sporting events at the touch of a button, a fridge fully stocked with refreshments and blankets to stay cosy when the sun goes down. Far more practical than an ice house.

Pool or tennis court? Which would you choose? It’s easy to get in touch with us here at Michael Graham through our social media channels, on Facebook, Instagram and twitter. And if you’re looking for a town or country home to buy or to rent, click on the Property Search button on the Michael Graham website where you’ll find a large selection of Michael Graham properties, many of them perfect for budding sports stars, including the homes for sale shown below.

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