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These properties may not look like much, but they've been home to some of the biggest names in music. In recent years, the childhood homes of many famous musicians have been appearing on the real estate market. The latest is that of late Beatle George Harrison, in Liverpool.
The three-bedroom terraced house is located at 25 Upton Green, in the Liverpool suburb of Speke. The Harrisons moved into the house in 1949, when George was just six years old, and lived there for almost a decade. It was in this home that the late British singer-songwriter made his first foray into music.
It also hosted several rehearsals of the Quarrymen, a band led by John Lennon that played skiffle (a mix of folk, jazz, country and blues influences). After meeting Paul McCartney on the bus to the Liverpool Institute High School for Boys, George Harrison successfully auditioned for the band. Over the course of rehearsals and concerts, it would be renamed the Silver Beats, the Silver Beetles and finally the Beatles in 1960.
The home has been renovated, but still retains some features from the time the family lived there, according to Omega Auctions, which is overseeing the sale on November 30. In addition, the auction house says it represents a good investment property. Property values in this area of Liverpool have reportedly risen 20% since 2014, when George Harrison's childhood home was purchased by its current owner.
Houses become museums
To optimize the chances of finding a new buyer for the house in Upton Green, Omega Auctions is also offering various autographs, photographs and other items that belonged to the Beatles. A move that echoes that of Kurt Cobain's family, who also put up for sale some of the Nirvana singer's personal belongings when they parted ways with the house where he grew up.
Among these personal items was a photograph of the star, guitar in hand, in his teenage bedroom. And the strategy paid off: the former home of Kurt Cobain was finally purchased in 2018 by Lee Bacon, a lighting professional, for 225,000 dollars.
Meanwhile, the current owners of George Harrison's childhood home hope to sell it for between 160,000 and 200,000 pounds (between 217,000 and 271,000 US dollars). They will most likely succeed given the recent appetite of buyers for homes where famous musicians grew up. In 2018, one buyer purchased Bruce Springsteen's childhood home in New Jersey for $225,000.
Many, like Lee Bacon, choose to renovate them to bring them as close to their original state as possible and allow them to accommodate public visits. "With a guitar you can move it around. A house is just kind of stuck there. It's not a portable collectible," avait expliqué à Rolling Stone Bill Pagel, le propriétaire d'une demeure où Bob Dylan a vécu durant son enfance.