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Flat where fictional hero lives in Ian Rankin's books goes up for sale

Making a killing? Three bedroom Edinburgh flat where fictional hero Inspector Rebus lives in Scottish author Ian Rankin’s crime novels goes up for sale for more than £425,000

  • Property in Edinburgh’s Marchmont area has been put on market for £425,000 
  • It has a location in Ian Rankin’s crime novels for all 22 of the bestselling books
  • Rankin said the timing was ‘odd’ because Rebus moves flat in his next book 

The flat where Inspector Rebus lives in author Ian Rankin’s crime novels has gone up for sale for more than £425,000. 

The property in Edinburgh’s Marchmont area has been the detective’s home for all 22 of the bestselling books in which he has featured. 

Rankin, 60, has previously identified the flat as being Rebus’s home and thanked a fan for alerting him to the sale. 

The flat in Edinburgh’s Marchmont area has been the home of Inspector Rebus in Ian Rankin’s crime novels for all 22 of the bestselling books in which he has featured

He said the timing of it was ‘odd’ as in his next book Rebus moves to a ground floor flat in the same block because of ill health.

The flat has been put on the market for offers of more than £425,000.  

It has three bedrooms and a ‘spacious bay lounge’ with ‘feature fireplace and ornate cornice’ and is on the second floor of a tenement block on Arden Street. 

Ian Rankin, 60, said the timing of the sale was ‘odd’ as in his next book Rebus moves to a ground floor flat in the same block because of ill health

There is also a modern fitted kitchen with dining area and an en-suite shower room in the main bedroom. It also comes with a share residents’ garden and a parking permit.  

Lucy Forbes, of estate agents Clyde Property, who are handling the sale, said: ‘The property has had good interest so far which is probably due to the location of the property. Marchmont is a highly sought after area and is very popular.

‘I would say the connection to the books may attract viewers and generate new interest, especially for Rebus fans.’

A sales brochure for the property reads: ‘Author Ian Rankin famously revealed that this flat was the home address of his popular character Inspector Rebus.

The flat has been put on the market for offers of more than £425,000 and has a modern fitted kitchen

‘Freshly decorate and well-proportioned three bedroom second floor tenement forming part of a traditional tenement building in the extremely popular Marchmont district of Edinburgh.

‘The flat is in a great location for young couples and professionals but would also be an excellent acquisition for a buy to let investor.’   

The Fife-born writer posted on Twitter: ‘This is very odd – just as I’ve got Rebus moving house at the start of the new book!’ 

The property also has a ‘spacious bay lounge’ with ‘feature fireplace and ornate cornice’

Rankin also joked that he was ‘good for a fiver’ after a tweet from Portobello Library suggested that Edinburgh residents should chip in to buy the flat.

The author lived on Arden Street as a student and decided to locate Rebus’s home in the building across the road from his flat.

In 2013, then Edinburgh University student Robert Kitney, whose family own the flat, admitted he had never read a Rebus novel.

He said: ‘My parents are fans of Rankin and were thrilled to discover it is Rebus’s flat. 

The flat has three bedrooms and is on the second floor of a tenement block on Arden Street

‘I don’t suppose it will become as famous as 221b Baker Street – Sherlock Holmes’s address – but maybe we will get some tourists.

‘I suppose I’ll have to read the books now too.’

Rebus fans often gather outside the flat as part of organised tours of locations mentioned in the books.

Rebus fans often gather outside the flat as part of organised tours of locations mentioned in the books

The three-bedroom property also comes with a shared garden and has been put on the market by Clyde Property

Describing the flat in the first Rebus novel Knots and Crosses, Rankin wrote: ‘John Rebus’s flat was his castle. Once through the door he would pull up his drawbridge and let his mind go blank, emptying himself of the world for as long as he could.

‘Many weeks ago, in a crazed state of righteousness, he had put up shelves along one wall of the living room, intending his sprawling collection of books to rest there.

‘But somehow they managed to crawl across the floor, getting under his feet, so that he used them as stepping stones into the hallway and bedroom.’ 

Rankin’s new Rebus book, A Song For The Dark Times, is due to be published in October. 

The novel series was turned into British television show starring John Hannah as DI John Rebus

In February last year, Rankin revealed he was moving into the apartment of the arch villain in his crime novels.  

The Inspector Rebus writer downsized to the flat where his fictional detective Rebus’s nemesis Big Ger Caggerty lived. 

In a previous book in the bestselling series about the Edinburgh police officer, Rankin moved crime boss Cafferty from a large home in the city’s Merchiston area to a luxury apartment in the Quartermile development.   

The Arden Street property has been put on the market by Clyde Property.   

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