As good as new: Three-bed house that was completely covered in ivy TREBLES in value after massive makeoverThe 'Ivy House' is on the market for 350,000 after makeoverThe Chelmsford property went up for sale for 120,000 last year

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UPDATED:

00:57 GMT, 7 December 2012

After decades of embarrassing the neighbours, the scruffiest house in Britain has, well, turned over a new leaf.

The previous owner went 20 years without trimming the ivy that covered the outside of the property – until eventually it started to invade the inside too.

/12/06/article-2243921-1660478F000005DC-912_634x532.jpg” width=”634″ height=”532″ alt=”Engulfed: Ivy covered the entire front of the house, including the garden and the wall, and had become a 'tourist attraction' in the area” class=”blkBorder” />

Engulfed: Ivy covered the entire front of the house, including the garden and the wall, and had become a 'tourist attraction' in the area

But fortunately for fed-up residents, the new owner was not so content to rest on his laurels.

The house has been stripped of the
ivy, renovated inside and out at a cost of tens of thousands, and is now
up for sale for 350,000.

Hard work: Once all the ivy had been removed from the outside and inside of the house, the owner faced thousands of pounds of further refurbishment to make it inhabitable

Hard work: Once all the ivy had been removed from the outside and inside of the house, the owner faced thousands of pounds of further refurbishment to make it inhabitable

Extreme home makeover: After massive restoration work, the house is now for sale for 350,000 - nearly three times the original price

Extreme home makeover: After massive restoration work, the house is now for sale for 350,000 – nearly three times the original price

One neighbour said: ‘We are so relieved.

'People would stop their cars to
stare at it and whilst it may have looked amusing, I honestly believe it
was having an impact on the house prices along the road.’

It took a team of workmen more than a
week just to strip the ivy from the three-bedroom house in Chelmsford,
Essex, after insurance company chairman Neil Utley bought it in August
last year.

At the time, he said: ‘I could not even see the house – just a house shape underneath the ivy.

'There was as much ivy on the inside as well so the house was completely dark, with no lights and no power.’

is barely visible behind the greenery

Then: The ivy-covered house looks tattered and scruffy next to the neighbours

Now: With the ivy removed the house has nearly trebled in value, much to the joy of both owner and the others on the street

Now: With the ivy removed the house has nearly trebled in value, much to the joy of both owner and neighbours

Before: Neighbours were complaining that the 'Ivy House' was dragging down the value of their properties

Before: Neighbours were complaining that the 'Ivy House' was dragging down the value of their properties

After: The house now matches the others built in the same style on the street

After: The house now matches the others built in the same style on the street