We are currently looking to buy our 'forever house'. There is an area of north London that I really like, can just about afford, and have seen a house that could work. However, the garden is north facing and there is a reasonably busy railway like at the bottom of it.
I believe that there are a couple of freight trains per day, and lots of commuter trains (it's the silver link line).
Would this be a deal breaker for you? Is it hideous in summer? I just can't make a decision on this one, and I doubt the vendors would be keen for me to spend the night there just in case!
We live in a house backing onto the Victoria - London Bridge line in S London. No regrets! The garden is tiny, but we're near the common. Also, trains don't go that fast near us and we have sidings next to the houses. They look hideous, but to be honest I don't really see them anymore. We couldn't have afforded the house without the train line...and an added bonus is that it would be almost impossible for anyone to break in from the back of the house. We hear very little noise. And the boys' room looks out over the lines - an added bonus for them!