Talk to me about nice places to live in Hertfordshire

(40 Posts)
HeartyHattie Tue 18-Oct-11 14:58:40

Nowhere too rural, needs to be in or very near to town or village, and easily commutable to central London.

Looking for 4/5 bedrooms minimum and a good sized garden.

Can go up to about £650-700k but would like to get it cheaper if possible.

TipOfTheSlung Tue 18-Oct-11 15:05:41

St Albans?


A lot of Herts fits what you have said, any other requirements

HeartyHattie Tue 18-Oct-11 15:40:02

Really like the look of St Albans but clueless about which bits of it are nicest. Will definitely go and have a look around at some stage soon, but any pointers?

Also really hoping to find somewhere that doesnt need too much work - modern kitchen, bathroom etc - but am quite fussy about the type of house. I hate those really ugly new builds.

TipOfTheSlung Tue 18-Oct-11 16:18:32

I can't think of any particularly bad areas.
I would look at schools if they're needed as catchments are very tight and then look at houses find what you like then check out the area.

I know Harpenden better, very good schools, no really bad areas.

It's all relative though isn't it

SwearyMary Tue 18-Oct-11 16:22:21

I live on the Herts/Beds/Bucks borders. Its lovely here. I'm very close to Whipsnade Zoo grin

Harpenden is very nice, as is Berkhamstead. I don't like Hemel Hempstead at all (sorry to any Hemeloids reading). Tring is also nice. I think the schools in this area are very good. My DD is at school in Bucks.

character property in Berkhamsted in the nice part of town. Berkhamsted is lovely but it's all about walking into the town centre and station which rules out Northchurch - it's nice but a bit of a sprawl.

There are plenty of 60's houses, detached, not quite walking distance of the station - 20 minute walk rather than 5. If you want character in Berkhamsted you are then closest to the station generally.

Yes, Hemel is not great but I live in the nicest part - Boxmoor, walking distance from Hemel station - again, it's the character properties and the 'moor'/cricket ground that is closest to the station. Also the town centre has Debenhams and a few nicer shops now - it is not as nice as Berkhamsted or St Albans but you will get much more for your money.

this one is MUCH bigger/better than you would get in Berkhamsted for the money

60's house but in a really nice, quiet road

St Albans - the best bit is again the character properties close to the station. If you go on Rightmove and find the cathedral on a map and draw a square 2 inches around it you will get the lovely properties along Fishpool Street (appearing in many period dramas). The rest is a sprawl with plenty of nice houses but it is crappy to drive into the station and stupidly busy.

Not character but incredibly central and cheap

town centre character but probably a bit overpriced as it's not ^that^ special

In general you probably need to narrow down your specification a bit as a lot of round here is driving to places, a lot of good detached property is 5-10 minutes drive from the town centres - if that's not what you want then stick to central character. smile

ooh, I liked boxmoor. We used to live in Hemel. In <gulp> grovehill <shudder> grinwe went to the boxmoor lodge every year on our wedding anniversary

I liked the villages around and about - feldon was nice, tring isn't bad and the little bits around - great gaddesden and all that. They were nice.

Akandra Tue 18-Oct-11 16:57:15

Hitchin is fabulous. I have lived here about 8 years now and have no intention of moving away. Your budget would also stretch to the very best parts of Welwyn Garden City (west side, near the station) or Welwyn. Both have good links into London.

Hecate you could probably buy a whole street on Grovehill for £650k.

I grew up in Gadebridge.

grin Oh yes. I wasn't on the Waveney or anything, mind. I lived over the other side, near the school.

When we first moved to Hemel, we rented a flat in woodhall farm. Then we wanted to buy a house. We had no idea about the reputation grovehill had!

I used to work at dacorum council, in housing. Bloody hated it.

smartyparts Tue 18-Oct-11 19:52:23

I work in St Albans, but would say, nice though parts of it are, it's been massively over developed and I would never choose to live there. It has some outstanding schools but they're so oversubscribed and the houses within their catchments are £££££. Decent sized family homes are usually over a million.

Most of Herts is nice, apart from Watford, Hemel & Hatfield imo.

eatyourveg Tue 18-Oct-11 20:21:32

Would second Berko. DH's home town

TheVampireEmpusa Tue 18-Oct-11 20:23:25

<whispers> I'm in Grovehill now, it isn't as bad as I expected.

But yes, I second St Albans

mrsravelstein Tue 18-Oct-11 20:26:53

we moved to bishops stortford a few months ago, absolutely love it: nice town with decent shops and restaurants, 35 mins to london liverpool st, tons of great state/private primary/secondary schools, loads of stuff for kids to do, people are friendly.

Akandra Wed 19-Oct-11 00:16:43

If you want a character property theres this in Hitchin.

ZombiouslyGhoulblivious Wed 19-Oct-11 14:55:21

Going a bit east, I love Bayford/Epping Green/Little Berkhamsted.

januaryjojo Wed 19-Oct-11 16:20:12

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

januaryjojo Wed 19-Oct-11 16:21:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

reallytired Wed 19-Oct-11 16:35:23

St Albans is nice, but avoid London Coney. You could get a nice house for £650K in St Albans and it has excellent travel links. I agree with Hecate that Boxmoor (hemel) is nice.

It is quite noisey if you live in the centre of town. If you want somewhere more peaceful then Harpenden or Berkhamstead is better.

reallytired Wed 19-Oct-11 16:38:36

sorry I meant the centre of st albans is noisey

MrsJohnDeere Wed 19-Oct-11 16:46:41


newgirl Wed 19-Oct-11 16:47:43

I live in St a town centre and love it. The primary catchments are tiny so really do your research. We just sold our town centre house and had 5 offers over ask g price so it is a competitive place to buy.

moraletotallydestroyedbypoopoo Wed 19-Oct-11 16:50:07

Hitchin, Harpenden, St Albans, Welwyn village. Avoid Stevenage, Hatfield, Letchworth. Welwyn Garden City is ok.

newgirl Wed 19-Oct-11 19:16:48

The modern one Laurie linked to is in a fab location by verulamium park - quite fancy it myself!

Kabby74 Wed 19-Oct-11 20:16:20

Harpenden is lovely and it does have great schools BUT they are also very over subscribed at the moment and the last year intake was particularly difficult with children being sent to the weakest school in the area as they couldn't get into those nearer to them. St Albans is lovely and bigger, I like Welwyn, Hitchin, Tring and Berkhamsted are lovely. Some of the outlying villages around Harpenden - Kimpton for e.g. are nice but there are issues with secondary catchment there.

sonnybeaudelaire Fri 21-Oct-11 19:31:34

If you are interested in St Albans, as well as starting from the cathedral area as someone else suggested, look at Fleetville (east side of the city) - lots of 3/4 bed houses, good schools (primary and secondary), great park, walk to the station and a strong community. I have to say that you'll be lucky to come in on your budget though if you want 5 beds, walk to the station and a big garden!

belles30 Sun 23-Oct-11 22:51:02

Hi I hope it is ok to join this thread,I am looking to move to Hertfordshire next year,I have been researching places online as we live in OZ,I like the look of both Hertford and Hitchin we like character both house and town,are both places nice and friendly to newbies.DH family live in Essex so need a reasonable drive for visits.We have lived in SouthWest London but want both town/rural.Thank you in advance for your suggestions.

gettingeasier Mon 24-Oct-11 07:27:25

I am in Welwyn Garden City and love it , we have a nice town with a great John Lewis and its 20 minutes on the train to Kings Cross and 5 minutes to the A1 which takes you everywhere.

Its not busy like St Albans but personally I prefer a more litter/noise/traffic free environment yet you can drive for 15 minutes and get all that from St Albans or go to London

The west side of WGC is lovely really green, nice houses, good schools and your budget would just about run to it although theres not much for sale at the moment and you dont often get any bargains !!

I do like Hertford and Hitchin too they are lovely old towns.

Have to agree avoid Stevenage and Hatfield but with your budget you can afford to but not sure what you would get in Harpenden or St Albans as they are very expensive

mediawhore Mon 24-Oct-11 17:13:32

Royston is lovely, can get a massive lovely home for that amount, good schools and train into London can take 35 mins (my husband gets it every morning/evening and is home by 6.30)

Also got Cambridge in easy reach too and midlands easily accessible.

belles30 Tue 25-Oct-11 23:07:42

I would be interested to know what Royston is like at night,is there big groups of youths hanging about?Is there nice pubs,restaurants and cafes?Also are there plenty of nice places to walk dogs?Appreciate your views.cheers.

LivingDead Tue 25-Oct-11 23:59:53

I live in Rickmansworth, which is pretty nice, some nice houses around and about, more blingy ones in Chorleywood. Good access to London, I have to say though it is dull, I don't drive so the issue is compounded but there isn't a great deal to do.

Lot's of lovely things to do around the area though, but travelling can be a bitch when you don't drive.

lisad123 Wed 26-Oct-11 00:07:20

I would go, st Albans, welwyn, welwyn garden (west side), codicote, hitchin, whethamstead and some of the little villages around welwyn garden.
London links are pretty good in most areas. Personally would never live too near the towns.
Some schools are good,some excellent, but in like in most areas, there are pockets of bad areas to aviod.

nieval Mon 22-Apr-13 17:19:33

What's the best way of finding out what those bad pockets are? We are thinking also of moving to Hertfordshire, our budget is 500k, so far nothing in harpenden or Berkhampsted for that really, well nothing nice. There seems to be better value in bishop storford, any views on that?

nieval Mon 22-Apr-13 17:20:22

We also have a 2 year old so we would be looking for an area with good schools

specialsubject Mon 22-Apr-13 18:20:22

Radlett is a thriving community with a mainline station and enough shops for everyday needs, lots to do and see around it and nice open country on the edge. I can only find one house in the village that meets your spec though!

Winceywoo Mon 22-Apr-13 20:00:12

Kings Langley or Abbots Langley could be worth a look. Also Croxley near Rickmansworth may be within budget. Personally I wouldn't rule out Watford - it doesn't sound very exciting but it's a vibrant town with great transport and schools. Lovely park too. Nascot Wood and Cassiobury are the better areas in Watford.

MissPB Tue 23-Apr-13 10:16:00

Don't completely rule out Letchworth - it is a beautiful town/first garden city in the world and has some beautiful houses, an independent cinema and an outdoor pool. Town centre is not the most exciting but the station is in the centre of town and I think it is 20 mins to London (and 5 mins to Hitchin!) This is lovely

nieval Fri 07-Jun-13 22:12:09

we have been looking in hertfordshire, in particular berkhampsted and Tring but we are not finding anything near nice for our budget 450K, so we are now looking further into Bedfordshire, Biddenham looks nice, im hearing mixed views on Bedford, does anyone have any views on Bedford. We have a 2 yearold so we also need to be in a good catchment area....

heg502 Tue 27-Aug-13 08:39:46

I would strongly advice against Bedford- we looked there as a possibility but its busy, dirty and full of 1960s tower blocks, like some parts of London.
I'm from St A and want to move back near, and find somewhere affordable. I personally think it's best to do away with a bedroom and a big garden to get somewhere in one of these lovely places- St Albans (love the bit around the ridgeway/quadrant), Harpenden, Wheathampstead, Redbourn, Tewin, Welwyn Garden City.
The schools are better, and it's so rural- there's a reason why they're expensive, and IMO it's worth getting on the bottom rung of these areas than a mansion in Bedford!
Be interested to see any more places listed, I know there are lots of nice places near St A.

BlueandBlack102 Mon 27-Oct-14 08:40:07

For schools I would recommend moving to Bishops Stortford. The town is an 30 minute journey to London and has amazing schools. The schools are very good and the girls school was 4th in the country for state schools this year and the other schools not being far behind. It is not to loud and not to quiet and everything is a reasonable price.

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