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Would you buy a house with a north facing garden?

(68 Posts)
georgeclooneyfan Sun 14-Jul-13 23:49:31

We can't decide over going for a new build which ticks all the boxes apart from it's north facing garden.We have spent ages talking about it and have been looking for ages for a house.We have always had a south facing garden which has been great when it is sunny,my dh would prefer a west facing one.We feel time is passing us by as we have waited literally years for the right house to come up.Any advice would be great thanks

littlecrystal Mon 15-Jul-13 08:38:50

I have West facing garden. In the evenings it gets so hot at the back that our kitchen is boiling when I need to make dinner, think of switched on oven! Come morning, our master bedroom boils from 5am with early east sun and I often escape to my kids' west facing bedroom to relax in their toddler bed smile In my ideal world the garden should face north west and the front should face east south to have best of both worlds. So north garden is not far from my ideal and it certainly would be much preferred than south garden to me.

nextphase Mon 15-Jul-13 08:52:05

We have a S facing garden.
So, everyone on the otherside of the street has a N facing garden.
The ones at the quite end, with decent size front gardens, have put table and chairs in the front for when they want a glass of wine ona sunny evening.
The kids play out of the sun!

motherofvikings Mon 15-Jul-13 08:56:58

We have a north facing garden - in a new-ish (10yo) build. smile

During the winter very little of it got sun and I was a resigned to the fact that we wouldn't have much sun. However the house was perfect in almost every other way for us so we compromised - we didn't have the budget for a 100% perfect house! smile

Since the clocks changed in the spring we've had more and more sun. smile
In the morning the patio next to the house is in the shade, most of the rest of the garden has sun though. By 2ish the patio the patio is starting to get sun and the rest of the garden is full sun. By 6 the only shade has been by the fence at the back. I really like it as there's cool spots for the dc.

I think unless you have a huge budget then you will never get a 100% perfect house.

pictish Mon 15-Jul-13 08:58:56

Even people with huge budgets don't get everything they want, unless they build themselves.

Doesn't matter what your budget - compromise is inevitable.

motherofvikings Mon 15-Jul-13 09:12:32

Very true Pictish! smile
I've seen those people on Location Location with massive budgets and they are never happy! hmm

BrianTheMole Mon 15-Jul-13 09:21:58

Depends on the length of the garden. Ours is over 100 foot, so a huge part of the garden is sunny anyway, its just shady in the shadow of the house. Which is fine, esp on really hot days. If it was a small garden I wouldnt want it though.

pictish Mon 15-Jul-13 09:24:56

Just thinking about fil and his wife really, who are minted. I would give my eye teeth for either of their fabulous houses...but they spent a long time choosing them...a long time. They wanted value for money the same as we all do, and had to sacrifice some features they wanted, for others that were more important.

Fwiw - I can't watch LLL unless I'm in a good mood. wink

neveronsunday Mon 15-Jul-13 10:43:56

We have a north west facing garden and it's fine.

If you have little children it's great as there is plenty of shade for them. It gets sun in the summer, but is gloomy in the winter.

However, you're never really in the garden in the winter anyway.

You have a to be a little careful about what plants you grow but, on the whole, it's much less of an issue than I thought it would be.

Lovely sunny patio in the evenings.

GuinevereOfTheRoyalCourt Mon 15-Jul-13 11:15:28

I love my (teeny) North and ever-so-slightly-west facing garden. The only downside is that we don't get any sun in it at all during the Winter months as the house casts too long a shadow. But as I don't want to sit in it during the Winter - this doesn't really bother me.

In the Summer it is glorious as we get lots of morning and evening sun, but it doesn't cook. There's always plenty of shade for the kids to play in too.

You can't have it every way though. Each aspect has it's own advantage/disadvantage. I think the idea of a blanket "south is always best" is a bit bizarre. For me, I'd choose Winter shade over a Summer roast any time! Perhaps the ideal house should come on one of those spinny roundabout thingys that they sometimes use on small drives?

georgeclooneyfan Mon 15-Jul-13 11:29:34

Wow thanks for all your advice everyone.We have been on every map online known to man to look at other houses in line with the one that we would possibly buy to see where the shadows are cast.The house itself is not built yet so it's difficult to know how big the garden is actually going to be , the house is going to be one and a half storey so not as high up as a normal two storey house with loft.So apparently you should get more sun than usual.I even went to someones door with the same house style almost directly in line with the one i might buy,a lovely lady actually let me through her house and into the garden (she was very trusting probably thought I was nuts!) So I could see where the sun was this was at 2pm.The very back of the house and patio was in the shade and about half way up the garden too,but the very back of the garden was in the sun.but my dh says come later on in day you would get more sun.Our kids are 14 and 12 and don't spend much time in garden these days the kitchen/diner would be at back of this house with bi fold doors and a window at left hand side so I think you would get some light.All the talk about it and research I do someone has probably already bought it and by the time we decide we will be looking to downsize to a smaller properly ha ha.

motherofvikings Mon 15-Jul-13 13:56:58

Fwiw our kitchen is north facing and is anything but dark. It's painted white and has sliding doors to the patio and a window (less than 2ft wide) by the sink.
I think light coloured walls helps a lot with darkness. None of the rooms at the back are particularly dark at all, they're not bathed in direct light but I quite like that. As would sleepy teenagers who want a lie in during the summer! smile

groovejet Mon 15-Jul-13 13:59:23

Our new garden is north west facing, is much more sunnier than I thought it would be, only half the patio is in shade, the rest is sunny and as a plus the kitchen is lovely and cool.

crazyhead Mon 15-Jul-13 15:26:47

Our new garden is south west and baking at the moment as it was pretty neglected. However, you can create shade with planting/pergolas etc but you can't remove the shade of the house. Also, we both work so it is definitely nicer in the evenings for most of the year and good for plants.

The kitchen diner is really too warm at the moment, but perfect most of the time, most people would definitely gravitate towards that room in an English climate.

However I think a lot of things can make a house gloomy or not, including the size of the windows and size and shape of the rooms, so if you are more worried about the effect on the house, think about the package

RobinSparkles Mon 15-Jul-13 22:25:11

Funnily enough, we've just moved into a new build with a North facing garden! I love it! The garden gets sun all day from 8 till 8 at the moment. It's quite long though, and there is nothing surrounding it to cast a shadow.

We have just moved from a house that had a South-West facing garden which barely got any bloody sun due to the neighbour behind having a massive tree. His garden was probably north ish facing and got sun all the bastarding live long day angry.

Jaynebxl Tue 16-Jul-13 06:59:56

We are moving from a south facing garden to a north facing one and I'm quite happy about it. But then I don't like sitting in the direct sunlight and always look for shade to sit under.

JakeBullet Tue 16-Jul-13 07:03:36

I have a North facing garden and its okay. I am also surrounded by other houses which block out sunlight inthe aafternoon. However I love it, plenty of shade to enjoy the garden in. I don't like sitting in bright sunlight so my garden is perfect.

HappyAsEyeAm Tue 16-Jul-13 10:07:00

We have a north facing garden. It has sun all day long. The amount of sun which your garden gets isn't just to do with the direction it faces. It is also to do with how built up the area is around you, in every direction. We are detatched, there are no houses behind ours, and there are generous spaces in between our house and the houses either side of us. So we get sun from every direction into our garden. I chase the shade around, rather than chase the sun. The Dc were hiding under the trampoline at the weekend to get some shade smile.

Our family room is off the garden, and I really like that it is a cool room without any direct sunlight in it.

vez123 Wed 17-Jul-13 16:17:07

Our house faces NE and the garden is only 35 feet long. At the moment the garden is sunny pretty much all day. Even in the evening between 6 and 7 we have a sunny spot in the middle of the garden, not less sun than the S facing ones opposite.
We didn't have any sun at all though in the winter months. And on those warm autumn days that you sometimes get in October the sun was only at the back of the garden in the afternoon whilst the front of the house was baking in the sun. I think as long as you're happy with the rest of the house and you know that you will get some sun it shouldn't be a reason not to go for the house.

ouryve Wed 17-Jul-13 16:19:05

Hell yes! Then I'd be able to sit outside in weather like this instead of always hiding indoors.

EasyFromNowOn Wed 17-Jul-13 17:10:56

new build, north facing garden here. It's great at the moment, the sun shines into the kitchen and dining room only until about 11am, so it isn't too hot at the moment. We have a patio directly outside the house, which is in shade most of the day, and another seating area at the bottom of the garden which is in sun until around 8pm throughout June and July.

As of now (5pm), about half the garden is in the sun and half in shade. Our garden is quite wide but not especially deep, but we are on a bit of a slope, which seems to help.

It is a bit gloomy in the depths of winter (we've been here just over a year) but I can live with that.

TenthMuse Thu 18-Jul-13 16:03:00

Ours faces north-east. It took a bit of getting used to, but we really like it now; there is some sun for much of the day (until about 5-6pm depending on time of year). The flower border is in the shadiest part, but we researched shade-loving plants and now have plenty of stuff growing there, plus fruit and veg in the sunnier parts. There is always some shade, which is great in summer, especially if you have kids.

North-facing aspect means the living room and our bedroom are always relatively cool (blissful in this weather!) We are lucky, though, because although it's a smallish urban garden (we're in London) it is square and fairly open, so never feels too dingy or oppressive. Imagine things might be different if it was narrower or more hemmed in. Also echo what Angelina said about drainage - we did have problems with this (with masses of builders rubble) and DP had to spend our first year here digging it all out so that plants would actually grow - not fun!

trikken Thu 18-Jul-13 16:07:58

I have a north facing garden. Its fine. Gets the light by mid morning and is great for parties and afternoon and evening bbq's.

Jan49 Thu 18-Jul-13 21:48:55

I've twice owned houses and I haven't a clue what way they faced and wouldn't take any notice of that. If north facing means it's pleasantly shady on a sunny day, I'd like that, but that's something I'd notice when living there, not something I'd take into account when buying.

camtt Thu 18-Jul-13 22:02:58

my garden is north facing too. I have a patio at the house end, deck at the back and it has a beautiful open view. I was worried about the north facing thing but haven't found it a problem, I can sit at the top or the bottom depending on time of day and the shade is very welcome in this heat

Noseynoonoo Thu 18-Jul-13 23:53:57

My garden faces NNW. It is not a problem at all.

The sun hits the patio at 11.30am and we have very little shade until late afternoon when we have shade cast on the garden from a tree several gardens down to the west. It is a blessed relief having that shade.

The back rooms of the house have been cooler during this heat whilst the south facing front room that we don't use.

I genuinely think that a lot of people miss out on a great house because of the north/south garden issue - but it helped us because houses in our area get snapped up really quickly (this was the 6th house we bid on).

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