Where to live... North London / further out...??

(25 Posts)
wanderingmama Tue 27-Mar-18 15:05:59

We want to buy a house in the next few months - can go anywhere really but it's hard to find somewhere that ticks all our boxes. Please help!

Our constraints:
- Two boys aged 3 and 1. Need good school options, preferably independent.
- Husband works in King's Cross. He has a really short commute right now, but we want more space. Not sure what commute we're ok with... We can compromise on this, but public transport options are a must.
- Would like a nice place, at least 3 bedrooms, budget around 750K. Garden is required!
- We need to be in easy reach of a good hospital with A&E. We had almost settled on moving to St Albans, which we loved for the ability to get a good sized house combined with a really easy train ride into London - but there isn't an A&E for 10 miles, which would be very hard if I needed to take the baby there on my own (baby has some issues that make this a necessity for us, at least to reduce anxiety).
- Would like a safe area with a good high street, nice community, "yummy mummy" vibe, activities for kids, green space... Could be urban or more villagey. Must be walkable with decent transit links (bus/train/tube all OK).

Some places we've considered: St Albans (no A&E but so nice to still be able to get in to London for work/activities); West Hampstead/Muswell Hill/Crouch End - pretty good but having trouble finding enough space/garden in our budget; Cambridge - checks all boxes but the commute is rough, a real possibility but worried we'll never see my hubby... We love the culture, activities, parks in London but really want to buy a place with more space and can't afford it here (Chalk Farm).

What do you think? Any ideas??! Thank you!!!

OP’s posts: |
Frequentflyer1 Tue 27-Mar-18 15:13:44

Have you looked at Harpenden? Closest A&E is Luton & Dunstable. Or Radlett? Closest is Watford.

Unfortunately space and a garden for £750,000 is hard to find in London!

pimlicolife Tue 27-Mar-18 15:17:02

We are thinking of moving out to St. Albans in the next couple of years too.

Would the travel time to a hospital further away there be similar to a closer one in central London?

Greenhouseonthehill Tue 27-Mar-18 15:17:21

You’ve no chance of a house in Crouch end, Muswell Hill etc on that budget.

Walthamstow is beginning to get a whiff of the ‘yummy mummy vibe’ and there is plenty for kids to do and schools are good. Commute to KX a piece of piss.

You can def get a house for that there.

We went to Bishop Stortford which is a kind of poor man’s St Albans.

Greenhouseonthehill Tue 27-Mar-18 15:19:46


650k. Use the spare 100k to do the loft.

Palavra Tue 27-Mar-18 15:21:58

Wanstead? Nice and green, villagey but in London, near a hospital. Wanstead flats and Wanstead park are beautiful and the high street is very nice.

Palavra Tue 27-Mar-18 15:28:55

Also good schools, very good for state primary schools (Nighingale) el and Wanstead high school is a good comp, good independent options such as Snaresbrook prep, St Aubyn’s etc and Forest, Bancrofts and Chigwell.


MuddyForestWalks Tue 27-Mar-18 15:38:13

Where are you now? There are quite a few properties in the footprint of Barnet General well within your budget on Rightmove, and Barnet itself is 'naice'.

Bishops Stortford is nice but absolutely miles from an A&E (it has a community hospital with a walk in centre but that's no use for you).

Tbh anywhere commutable and super near a hospital is generally not very 'yummy mummy' (Luton, Harlow, Braintree for example). You could look at Hitchin, that's about 5.miles from the Lister hospital and has very fast trains into Kings Cross if I remember rightly.

happyinherts Tue 27-Mar-18 15:44:38

Barnet - 20 mins or so to Kings Cross on Northern Line.

Modern hospital facility - Barnet General.

Wide choice of schools - independent and state. Performs well in London rankings.

Not too 'towny' - close to green open spaces

Can buy property within your budget

picklesandcheese1 Tue 27-Mar-18 16:06:42

It's simply not true that you won't find that in Muswell Hill. You need to look North of the Broadway off Conley Hatch. They won't be period houses but they will have a garden and be in the catchment for Coldfall which is excellent.

Osier Crescent, Muswell Hill, London, N10

MsGee Tue 27-Mar-18 16:10:09

This is in a nice part of Hitchin, in catchment for great schools - www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-53491599.html

Greenhouseonthehill Tue 27-Mar-18 16:43:40

I stand corrected on Muswell Hill. Although I don’t think of that road as Muswell Hill proper, and I actually rented on that road back in the day...
It’s where the poisoned Russian spy Alexander litvinenko lived.

redavocado Tue 27-Mar-18 16:50:50

If you've been looking at Crouch End/Muswell Hill, have you tried the other side of the railway? You get a lot more space for your money.

I'm not sure that budget would get you a house on Harringay ladder anymore but Bounds Green/Bowes Park might be an option? The Piccadilly line isn't that fast but you can change at Finsbury Park or get the Moorgate trains into Highbury & Islington for a better connection to Kings Cross.

MsJuniper Tue 27-Mar-18 16:57:14

Mill Hill is nice and well connected with trains from MH Broadway to St Pancras or MH East on Northern Line. Plenty of green space and villagey feel. £750k would get a new build in one of the local developments or a more period property. Barnet A&E not far away.

Mary21 Tue 27-Mar-18 17:36:22

Tring nearest A+e 10 miles
Ware nearest a+e 5 miles
Hitchin nearest A+E 3 miles
Berkhampsted equidistant 2 A+E 10 miles to each. Berkhampsted school
Train fares will be a lot more

Mary21 Tue 27-Mar-18 19:29:43

Another thought Bushey. 2 miles to Watford General, Aldenham prep and senior. Habs, edgegrove, Mill Hill not far. Fast train to London Euston less than 20 mins

Zodlebud Tue 27-Mar-18 20:27:10

Another vote for Berkhamsted- very yummy mummy. Lots of lovely pubs, restaurants, cafes, independent shops and a Waitrose and M&S food.

You’ll get a good house on a nice road for your budget but it will only be 3 bedrooms. 30 mins on the mainline into Euston and then an 8 minute walk to Kings Cross.

Independent preps are Berkhamsted (although their main entry point is Stepping Stones nursery not Reception so you might have missed the boat there), Chesham Prep, Lockers Park, Westbrook Hay and Beechwood Park.

Secondary you have Berkhamsted, St Albans, St Columba’s and Aldenham. Traditionally a large proportion of children go to the grammars in Chesham and Aylesbury although being out of county and shrinking catchment areas mean this is not a given.

It’s a great place to live.

Moominmammacat Wed 28-Mar-18 09:33:19

Potters Bar! 16' to KX and Barnet hospital down the road.

Yokohamajojo Wed 28-Mar-18 09:44:47

I would also suggest Barnet, East Barnet, New Southgate, New Barnet, High Barnet, Whetstone or Southgate in Enfield. You have A&E in Barnet Hospital or Middlesex if you go for New Southgate. Lots of transport, Tube from Arnos Grove/Southgate or Totteridge and whetstone. Or overground straight into Kings Cross and Moorgate

Otterspotter Wed 28-Mar-18 18:43:01

Have a look at Bounds Green. Everyone here (including us) used to rent a flat in Muswell Hill or Crouch End and has moved here. The stretch between the Ranelagh pub (genuinely great pub) and the North Circ has some great sized are some great sized terraced houses eg medium: www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-62888941.html or large: www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-71599934.html. You get easy access to all the amenities of Muswell Hill and Crouch End with their very yummy mummyish vibes but you have the bonus of the tube station. Schools are all fab- all 3 main schools now outstanding, lovely new coffee shops starting to open... please feel free to ask anything more!

pigshavecurlytails Thu 29-Mar-18 11:06:23

Don't forget that most of the independent schools in this neck of the woods are selective, so no guarantee. You might want to wait until you've got your three year old into a school then choose the house to match the school rather than the other way round?

Sabulous Mon 09-Apr-18 11:20:43

Have you thought about more Essex, Romford / Gidea Park / Upminster / Brentwood way? You'll be able to get a decent house for that amount of money. I know that it gets a bad rep, but it's actually really nice. Lots of green spaces, lots of activities to do with the kids. And there's a hospital in Romford too, also with a bad rep but much improved, plus it has a kids a&e.
Crossrail will be happening soon too, so that will help with the commute.
I lived in Islington for 28 years, and never thought I would leave, but moving out here was the best decision and I don't regret it at all.

orangeblosssom Mon 09-Apr-18 20:14:16

Southgate on the Piccadilly line.
Good schools. Southgate Green has a village feel.
Might be able to get a 3 bed on that budget.

Thisnameistaken Tue 10-Apr-18 17:12:02


NMcD Wed 27-Jun-18 14:56:42

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