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4 bed house with character for £450k or less in friendly rural (ish) area? Any ideas to tickle my fancy?

(42 Posts)
flowerpot38 Thu 18-Dec-14 18:00:36

I live in a 1980s box with no fireplace and I'm fed up and want to move. I probably should be grateful for what I've got but I don't feel myself at all here. I feel like an outsider where people are highly competitive and I'm not wearing the right coat/boots/ plucked eyebrows to fit in with the other 'mummies'. Perhaps it's just winter blues, but I'm feeling a bit desperate. It won't be for a while but I'd like to consider options I hadn't thought of before. I'd like a good size garden, and a house with character, possibly in a rural area. We were looking for somewhere commutable to London (Waterloo/Blackfriars) initially, but now we are considering a job/lifestyle change for the right house. Does anyone have links of places up for sale? I know I'm being very vague but I think I need to think outside the box. Nowhere too isolated but with countryside on our doorstep. I love Oxford but think it's probably too expensive. Good state schools are pretty important too (primary and secondary), and a friendly community. Children are 5 and 2 years now. The thought of starting all over again and making friends scares me but maybe I need to take the plunge...

We think we can get £500k for this place but will need to take into account stamp duty and moving fees etc. Don't mind somewhere quite a bit cheaper and investing the rest.

Hoping to be

MegBusset Thu 18-Dec-14 18:06:54

Norfolk. You'll have a huge choice with that budget. Finding a job may be the sticking point though - what industry do you work in?

VivaLeBeaver Thu 18-Dec-14 18:14:02

this ticks your boxes

MegBusset Thu 18-Dec-14 18:15:49

I'd move here if I had your budget, which sadly I don't!!

TheWildRumpyPumpus Thu 18-Dec-14 18:16:29

We've just done it! Sold our 3 bed semi for almost 600 and embracing village life in a detached house in a Northamptonshire village which we bought for 348 smile

If you search around Kettering (not IN Kettering necessarily!) then there are lots of nice villages, with houses for sale at 400k and under. Property at that price doesn't move too fast, most of the ones we looked at are still available a couple of months later.

Good luck!

VivaLeBeaver Thu 18-Dec-14 18:18:07



link{\more modern}

VivaLeBeaver Thu 18-Dec-14 18:18:38

better link

GertrudePerkins Thu 18-Dec-14 18:27:34

with a budget like that you could choose your location anywhere in the North.

I like this

flowerpot38 Thu 18-Dec-14 18:48:54

thanks Meg, Viva, WildRumpy and Gertrude. I'll look at those link right away. I don't work currently, but husband works in IT industry (computer games). He's considering move away from computer games and be a project manager or technical architect for a largeish company.

flowerpot38 Thu 18-Dec-14 18:52:10

Northamptonshire sounds very tempting WildRumpy. We met and lived in North Oxfordshire and really miss that lifestyle. Where do you work (if you don't mind me asking)? Do you have a long commute?

DealForTheKids Thu 18-Dec-14 18:54:47

Just to throw south out there, have you considered Farnham in Surrey?

Mumraathenoisylion Thu 18-Dec-14 18:58:03

I offer you this - midlands house around 1hr commute by train to euston.

Mumraathenoisylion Thu 18-Dec-14 18:59:33

There is a huge gaming company up here too - here is a link to the current vacancies -

Mumraathenoisylion Thu 18-Dec-14 19:00:38

Good god Gertrude that house is spectacular.

ShootTheMoon Thu 18-Dec-14 19:04:37

West Oxfordshire has plenty of lovely houses with big gardens for that budget, and Paddington is directly commutable by train from Charlbury, Kingham, Long Hanborough etc, though not a nice or speedy commute!

flowerpot38 Thu 18-Dec-14 19:07:08

I love the house in the first link especially. I'm concerned I'll be too isolated though. Perhaps I've been stuck inside the M25 for too long. But a lively community/ nearby market town is fairly important.
Family live in the north west/ Shropshire so perhaps I will explore there too.

MmeLindor Thu 18-Dec-14 19:17:24

Truly out of the box, but have you considered Scotland? this is quite expensive for the area, but well within your budget and this needs a bit of work, but is lovely. Again needs a bit of work, but in a gorgeous area.

Dundee is great for games/software companies.

NeverFreezeLobsters Thu 18-Dec-14 19:20:49

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

flowerpot38 Thu 18-Dec-14 19:21:46

I have been thinking about Farnham in Surrey Dealfor. Perhaps I should take a day trip there. The house you linked to is interesting but perhaps a bit cramped. I wonder if we'd be making a big enough change if we moved there.
Warwickshire house looks lovely Mumraa and I will explore that company too.
I'd love to live in West Oxfordshire ShootTheMoon. I have always liked Chipping Norton and surrounding area. DH says he is prepared to do a longer commute, but I want him to see the kids.

IAmAPaleontologist Thu 18-Dec-14 19:23:25

Ooop North

Needs some work but nice place.

MmeLindor Thu 18-Dec-14 19:25:02

Dundee. Home of Sinclair ZX Spectrum, Lemmings, Grand Theft Auto and Minecraft smile

ShootTheMoon Thu 18-Dec-14 19:37:43

Chippy is nice! Some great stuff to do with kids at the weekend at least smile

I have friends in Farnham and it seems like a thoroughly lovely place to be smile

TheWildRumpyPumpus Thu 18-Dec-14 20:08:33

I'm not working at the moment. DH works in IT too, he left his job in the City, took a big pay-cut and now works at a 'family firm' (400 employees rather than 25,000) where he basically does 9-5, gets a full hour for lunch and gets to spend more time with the family. He is based in Wellingborough which is about a 15 minute drive from the village we have bought in.

I think that this house should be coming back onto the market soon as the sale has fallen through - it's gorgeous and right on the outskirts of Kettering, but still close to the station of you do need to commute.

I've also viewed some more in the area if you'd like some other links!

Somethingtodo Thu 18-Dec-14 20:38:06

Wow - all I can say is "who knew" - some really stunning properties...

flowerpot38 Thu 18-Dec-14 20:42:21

Yes, thank you everyone. I'm feeling more cheerful already and will keep a list of potential areas. Thanks to everyone for thinking about IT/gaming jobs too and highlighting a few areas.
It's funny that we only moved to the south east temporarilyfor work. We have ended up staying here to capitalise on the housing market as it seems so foolish to move away, but I think it's just been making me miserable. Better to be happy!

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