It’s a beautiful day outside and the water looks inviting.
“People think swimming pools are expensive but our gas bill for the entire house including the pool is only £150 a month,” says James Sinclair.
“There’s 300mm of insulation all around it. If you build things properly they cost less to run and they don’t go wrong.”
With exposed Douglas fir beams, beautiful tiling and even Greco-Roman statues, the pool would put those in many luxury spas to shame.
James, a structural engineer, and his wife Anna, a retired teacher, bought the house on Fintry Place in Broughty Ferry around 30 years ago.
“We lived in Hong Kong for 11 years before that, I worked for the government there,” James explains.
Anna adds: “We actually bought this house a year before we moved home. It sat empty for that time but we didn’t want to miss out.”
The house dates to 1874 and is thought to be the former manse to St Luke’s Parish Church.
The couple added an extension in 1997, with a utility room, second kitchen, shower room and a living room that could easily be repackaged into a self contained flat.
The pool was added in 2000. It links to the other extension through a conservatory, and to the old house via a new hallway with lit by a bank of skylights.
There’s a rooftop array of solar panels that are on the highest tariff and generate in an income of around £700 each year as well as reducing electricity bills.
The old section of the house has a lovely drawing room with high ceilings and an archway through to the dining room.
There’s a smaller living room that has a wood burning stove set into the wall. The couple divide their time between this and the living room in the extension.
“One is our winter room, with a cosy stove, and the other is our summer room because it’s next to the garden and gets lots of light,” Anna says.
Upstairs is a master bedroom with bay window and en suite, along with four other bedrooms and a bathroom.
The garden has been landscaped for ease of maintenance and there’s a seating area ideal for an evening glass of wine.
James runs his one-man structural engineering business from home and converted the space above the garage into his office.
The couple are now building their own modern house in the Walled Garden at Ballindean, near Inchture.
“It’s open plan and will be super insulated,” Anna says. “We’ll miss this house though and of course we’ll also miss being in Broughty Ferry.”
James is putting his engineering skills to good use by project managing the build.
“It’s wind and watertight now and we hope to be living in it by the end of the year,” he explains.
“It’s always been a dream of mine to do this. I’ve spent so many decades building other people’s houses. It’s great to finally be building my own.”
23 Fintry Place, Broughty Ferry is on sale with RSB Lindsays for o/o £575,000.