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Moving south worth the drop in house size ?

(19 Posts)
Ishani Thu 19-May-11 18:36:18

My husband has started a new job down south and is currently commuting up at weekends. He is onto a good thing with lodgings he's found but obviously misses us during the week as we do him.
However I am house hunting and to buy or even rent in our price bracket would mean a huge drop in our standard of living, we currently have four bedrooms could do with 5 but would have to have 3 and half the garden size which is a pain.
Am trying to think if advantages of being down south we have family in the midlands so that's no tie either way.

MegBusset Thu 19-May-11 18:38:29

Can you not move a bit closer so that he can commute daily, but not so close that you have to live in a shoebox? Lots of places in/near the Midlands commutable from London.

TheOriginalFAB Thu 19-May-11 18:39:47

Living in the middle is a good idea.

I would swap in a heartbeat if I thought my DH would agree to it.

I live in the South and want to move North.

northerngirl41 Thu 19-May-11 19:18:00

We're in a similar situation but as much as I miss DH there's no way our marriage would survive all of us living in a shoebox. We've somewhat spoiled ourselves with the situation here, I'd find it really difficult to take a step backwards in terms of space/quality just to live in London. The only benefit to living in London IMO is that you get paid slightly higher salary and get to work with bigger brands/projects. Everything else pretty much sucks (I did it for long enough!).

It would be somewhat different I think if the kids were older and wanted to be near the bright lights of London. Might yours want to do work experience or media type jobs?

Other than that you might think of ways of making the commute more pleasant - e.g. DH lives v close to mainline station which takes him straight here and he works two days a week from home. The idea was to make home as lovely as possible so that he always wants to come home and immediately relaxes when he's here. We also looked at living in Paris/Belgium weirdly as it's about the same travel time, so look at where you could realistically get to.

BeattieBow Thu 19-May-11 19:22:46

I would rather live with my dh (for both myself and the children's sake) in a small house than without him in a large one.

We moved to a larger house and suffer a large commute, and have decided it's not worth it. It's more important to all be together for as much time as possible. But that's just our opinion.

But I suppose it depends, if this is a short term move then maybe he'll get another job near your city in a couple of years?

Cattleprod Thu 19-May-11 19:26:35

The South is a big area though, not just London!! You don't say where the job is so it could be anywhere from Cornwall to Kent. I suspect if prices are expensive it must be London/Surrey/West Sussex etc. There are cheaper places still in the south - could you find somewhere within commuting distance that is still affordable?

northerngirl41 Thu 19-May-11 19:42:38

Good point Cattleprod I saw "south" and "house prices" and assumed London - I stand corrected!

I do have a couple of thoughts on the whole downsizing thing though:
Could you each have a "third place" - gym, club, coffee shop etc where you take time out?
Look at properties which have extra reception rooms and use them as a bedroom? (e.g. dining room, basement, attic, study etc.) Also look at properties near parks/woods for outdoor space rather than insisting on a garden.

Ishani Thu 19-May-11 20:08:16

I'm looking in Cheltenham which could be my down fall but I don't want a lesser town than where we are now if that makes sense ? I'm used to the dizzy heights of Birmingham so even Cheltenham seems quite small and quiet, not that I don't like that but I am thinking of the DC's in years to come, we started off looking at Devon and Exeter but there were too small and I font want to do that much driving around.

scaryteacher Thu 19-May-11 20:31:44

Devon isn't small Ishani - it's one of the largest counties in England.

Where is he based? You say you're looking at Cheltenham (expensive) but South is also Southampton, Portsmouth, Chichester, Winchester, Brighton, Bath, Bristol, Basingstoke and I suppose Swindon might count as well.

You get more house for your money in Devon and Cornwall, but I'm afraid the driving is the trade off.

Ishani Thu 19-May-11 21:51:48

I've had a really good look around Devon and Cornwall and it's just not my cup of tea Scary.

MegBusset Thu 19-May-11 23:58:47

I'm a bit confused, so your husband works in Cheltenham and you live in Birmingham? Doesn't seem that far a commute to me?

Ishani Fri 20-May-11 09:05:15

No I'm from Birmingham, we live in the north west about 4 hours drive from Cheltenham.

scaryteacher Fri 20-May-11 10:47:03

So look at some of the other places I've mentioned - Southampton, Portsmouth, Winchester and Basingstoke are in Hampshire; Brighton and Chichester are in Sussex; Bath, Bristol and Swindon are Avon/Wilts way and all are M4 corridor.

I wouldn't choose to live in any of those apart from Winchester/Chichester/Bath as they are quite country in some respects. Hampshire leaves me cold having grown up there, and we go back to see pils, and it can be noisy, urban and too busy for me; but then, Devon and Cornwall have been my cup of tea for 25 years (bar being in exile near Brussels for 5 years).

lalalonglegs Fri 20-May-11 10:59:28

If you are looking at Cheltenham but finding it too expensive (and a bit small), might Bristol be an alternative? Much bigger city (obviously) and has much wider range of property and prices also closer to Devon if that is where his job is (I'm a bit confused about where your husband needs to be, to be honest).

Jojocat Fri 20-May-11 11:36:49

If your husband is working in Cheltenham have you considered Worcester?

Ishani Fri 20-May-11 13:27:39

Hubby is working from gurnsey to Cardiff, the M5 corridoor if you see what I mean. Cheltenham was in the middle of the region but handy for the midlands, Bristol would be perfect but I was daunted by the suggestion from money saving expert people that it was also very expensive for the right schools and areas, am very open to suggestions if you have any.
Bath I'd love but the house priced are shocking and again find the outstanding schools seems to be a tough call.

Ishani Sun 19-Jun-11 11:29:56

Shameless bounce as I'm getting nowhere with this nearly 2 months on.

feckwit Sun 19-Jun-11 11:34:50

What about Warwickshire? I'm near stratford and there are people in my village who work in cheltenham and Gloucester areas? Warwickshire has some lovely towns, nice villages, easy to get to Birmingham (my village is on a direct train route), grammar schools and other good schooling... Pm me if I can help.

feckwit Sun 19-Jun-11 11:35:49

Or Banbury/oxon areas?

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