Look what Santa managed to deliver on 23 December, courtesy of the Greenleaf company sale!
For the benefit of any UK readers, I will go into a bit more detail about what was involved in ordering this from the States.
When I got the sales notification, I emailed Greenleaf directly to ask how much international shipping to the UK would be. For these two kits, they quoted c. $110. From the paperwork included with the box, it looks like this was based on the United States Postal Service Priority main International Rate / Commercial Base Pricing. The large but thin box was posted on 6 December from Greenleaf.
Around 16 December, I received a card in the post from UK Parcelforce Worldwide to say that a parcel had arrived from overseas and was subject to Customs charges. On the declared value of $130, they charged the following:
Customs Duty: zero
Excise Duty: zero
Import VAT (Value Added Tax) £30.17
Clearance Fee: £8
I paid this fee online using a credit card at http://www.parcelforce.com/, and was able to specify my delivery date. I picked 23 December because I knew I would be home that day, but I could have had it earlier. The parcel was delivered to my door early on 23 December.
This means that my total expenses for these two houses are:
Purchase at 25% discount in sale, plus shipping (c.$110): $245.72 (c. £157.61)
VAT/Clearance fee: £38.17
Considering that I don't think you can get either of these houses in the UK at the moment, and that Elora Dollshouses in Canada (who come up in Google results over here as UK shippers) would have charged CAN $192 just to send the McKinley over here (c £120), I think my purchase compares favourably. Also favourably against the price of UK-made house kits, although I am on weaker ground there as the McKinley is still the rubbish mahogany diecut plywood. Now that I have bought one, Greenleaf will no doubt issue this in spanking new laser cut birch ply.
Now I must exert superhuman willpower and not start building the McKinley until I have done a better job on finishing up the Willowcrest.