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Bath outskirts on a budget, any help please?

(92 Posts)
GuyMartinsSideburns Wed 07-Jan-15 13:27:08

Do and I are finally able to start looking to buy our first ever house, having lived in council properties for over a decade. We can't afford Bath, the ex council house 5 doors down recently went for £220,000 and our budget is more like £180,000 at the most so we're looking to move a few miles out.

Dh needs to commute to Saltford to work, and we need 3 beds at least. Now from my hours spent on Rightmove I guess I'm going to be looking at Radstock, Trowbridge etc however I don't know much about these areas (I'm not from here) except from the small bits I've read on here when others looking for property. There weren't exactly glowing reviews, however I've read the offsted reports for what are the local schools and theyre good. I'd like to be in a small town/village location I think but I also don't want the kids to have nothing to do when a bit older. I don't mind moving somewhere a bit further for a nicer house, I've seen one I really like the look of in Trowbridge but again I don't know the area. Ideally I'd like to be able to walk the children to primary school, and be on a bus route for when they go to secondary.

I like Frome, but don't think we can afford it except for the new town house style houses however an acquaintance lives in one and says it very small, they had problems getting their furniture in etc. ideally we'd like to not live on an estate anymore.

I like the little miners cottages, the only thing I don't like about them is that a lot of them have downstairs bathrooms but I guess there might be scope to build a double story extension at some point and put a bathroom upstairs? I don't know what I should be looking at/thinking about etc I've read that having a downstairs bathroom may make the house difficult to sell in the future?

Any opinions on Paulton? I've only driven through it once lol

Sorry this is so long, none of my friends actually own property so I don't really have anyone to bounce ideas off and ask for information.

Thanks very much for any help/advice, or ideas of other places to look.

BanKimoon Wed 07-Jan-15 13:32:00

We live in the area and there are some lovely places to live! Frome is lovely and has plenty going on in terms of shops, cafes and activities etc.

I'm afraid there's a reason why trowbridge is significantly cheaper than many other towns in the area - it has very little to recommend it from what I can see. The town centre seems very run down and not a lot going on.

Don't know Paulton I'm afraid but good luck looking!

GuyMartinsSideburns Wed 07-Jan-15 13:38:51

Yes I have a friend in Frome, I like the feel of it but unfortunately don't think we'll be able to move there. Thanks for Trowbridge opinion. You don't think its a place that could recover, somewhat? Its hard to know isn't it. This is all quite depressing tbh, God knows where we'll have to end up. It's so difficult looking (obv never done this before) because not only do you look for a house you like, but you then have to make sure it all ties in with schools etc. feels like Im fumbling in the dark somewhat tbh.

Thanks smile

CrazySexyCool123 Wed 07-Jan-15 13:43:35

How about keynsham, Stockwood, Whitchurch, bitton, hanham, longwrell green...........keep bath for days out!

GuyMartinsSideburns Wed 07-Jan-15 14:28:43

Thanks Crazy but im not so keen on those areas, i don't want to be too close to Bristol either.

Don't ask for much do i?! :?

shaska Wed 07-Jan-15 17:13:15

I've got friends in Frome who love it there. I had a quick look on zoopla and saw a few 3 bedders within your budget. They're not fancy, and most could do with a lick of paint and bit of elbow grease, but they looked sturdy. I don't know anything about different parts of Frome though, so they might've been in rough parts.

For me, I'd always buy a structurally sound dog of a house in an area I liked, over a nicer one in a shoddy area.

No idea about other areas near bath sorry!

GuyMartinsSideburns Wed 07-Jan-15 17:33:36

Thanks Shaska, that makes sense. I've looked at all the Frome ones, i think I'm being too picky but i wanted something i could at least get a bit excited about, i guess on our budget that's just not possible. If we got a structurally sound house that needed work, we prob couldn't afford to have the work done! If that makes sense? Time isn't on our side re getting a mortgage either. I always dreamed of looking for a house but this is pretty shit tbh! Prices are so crazy aren't they.

GuyMartinsSideburns Wed 07-Jan-15 18:15:32

Don't mean to sound so depressing! I realise we're fortunate enough to even be looking.

shaska Wed 07-Jan-15 20:19:12

No, I know what you mean - I got similarly depressed, when we were first looking.

It's why I mentioned area vs house, really, in that what we ended up doing was buying a truly disgusting looking place, but it was in a neighbourhood we liked, and didn't need builders, it just needed a ton of DIY-level stuff. It takes ages, because we've had to do it in stages as we could afford it and had time, but it's been really fun, and absolutely worth it, not to mention the fact that it's added value to the property. So that means we're now (3 years on) in a better position capital-wise as well.

I'm sure we could find you something near-ish Bath in your budget, but if it's in an area you don't enjoy living in, then it's the same as a house you don't enjoy living in I think.

Good luck, anyway, and hopefully someone will come along with more knowledge of a lovely village with cheap housing!

DeffoJeffo Wed 07-Jan-15 20:25:59

I would pick Radstock/Midsomer Norton over Trowbridge every time. Frome is nice but seems a long way away from Bath tbh. Have you looked at Peasedown at all? I wasn't up for looking there when I was looking but in hindsight I think I was being a bit snobby and I now know quite a few people who live there and love it! Lots of nice families and very easy to all very into Bath. Good luck with the search smile

DeffoJeffo Wed 07-Jan-15 20:27:14

Oh yes. Also I think Paulton is fine smile nice midwife led unit too grin

mothermirth Wed 07-Jan-15 20:31:58

Affordable[[ Beautiful but only two bedrooms - but it's an EOT so perhaps you could extend?


mothermirth Wed 07-Jan-15 20:39:26

Whoops, links fail. this is the beautiful two-bedder.

smokedgarlic Wed 07-Jan-15 22:18:10

Actually Trowbridge is lovely with a great sense of community and you can get a beautiful house for your money with a lovely garden .

littlesupersparks Wed 07-Jan-15 22:26:12

Trowbridge has the cheapest property prices of anywhere around. I think the facilities are pretty good - amazing library, good museum, 2 markets a week in the town centre, some bigger shops - boots, next, new look, brantano. Cinema in town with another leisure development coming. Lots of the primary schools seem ok - secondary doesn't have the best reputation but there is a new one on the cards. Lots of redevelopment... It's not anything like Bath though!! It's definitely a different kind of place with different people.

roneik Wed 07-Jan-15 22:45:07

If you hold back for a while you may not need to be a mortgage slave
In the next few months IMO property will plunge in price in many areas

If you can hold out for a bit it may make a massive difference to your life
Please just think about it

GuyMartinsSideburns Thu 08-Jan-15 09:33:03

Thank you very much for all of the replies, they help so much.

Shaska I get what you mean about d.i.y etc, I think I felt quite overwhelmed by the thought of having to move and then be doing all sorts but I can see it may be the way to go - and be very worthwhile when completed.

Deffo I looked Peasedown but it seems a bit too middle of nowhere kind of thing. I'm probably wrong though as I've never had cause to go there very often. We don't mind Frome being the distance it is, we like the atmosphere there and I have a friend there already which is nice. Maybe I should look at Midsomer Norton more? Don't you think Radstock has even less going on than Trowbridge? Why would you pick Radstock over it? Sorry for questions! Would you pick Paulton over them both? i need to get over there again for another look. I'd heard good things about the midwife led unit but I am now DONE having children grin

Mothermirth that really is a beautiful house. Looking at the floor plan though I'm not sure how easy it would be to extend and add another bedroom. We do really need parking too. Thanks for suggesting 2 beds and extending though, we hadn't considered that blush

Smokedgarlic do you live in Trowbridge then? I'll admit I couldn't quite understand the opinions, I know it's got a bit of a name and perhaps not a lot going on in the past. Dh wondered if it could be one of those places that is now getting better? Improving somewhat?

Littlesupersparks oh don't get me wrong I'm certainly not after a place like Bath! I don't really fit in here, I rarely use the city centre because there's nothing there that interests me except the history itself, if that makes sense. I live on one of the council estates on the outskirts and have had plenty of snidey comments/looks when somebody had asked me where I live... I'm not ashamed, it is what it is. I'd just like to live somewhere where I can make some friends, do a few things with the kids, eat out occasionally, and generally just feel content. I'd like to finally have a forever house, but I'm not after 'amazing' on our budget. I want the kids to be able to walk to school and then have access to a secondary and college, I think that's my main concern. I always thought Trowbridge seemed fine, like any other area. I do worry though I'll move in somewhere (anywhere) and then feel like I've made a terrible mistake.

Roneik that is interesting you say that. Thing is how long do you wait? When do you know when to pounce? We're not going to stretch ourselves hugely but of course we'd like to get value for our money, also bearing in mind d.i.y and what have you.

Thanks again all, this is very helpful x

GuyMartinsSideburns Thu 08-Jan-15 13:50:29

Any thoughts on Wells? Dh could still commute from there. Every time we drive through it we go "oooh it's nice here" grin but again, don't know what it's like to actually live there.

GuybrushThreepwoodMightyPirate Thu 08-Jan-15 14:20:03

Wells is nice, markets, cinema, shops, restaurants and decent schools. You could get 3 beds in your budget with the right property. Just be sure to check areas, even in such a small town (city!) there are bits you may prefer to avoid living in.

GuyMartinsSideburns Thu 08-Jan-15 14:24:57

We've spotted one we like the look of on the outskirts. Name escapes me but it's not far from the blue school. Do you know the area? Thanks for your reply.

GuybrushThreepwoodMightyPirate Thu 08-Jan-15 14:30:13

I do know the Wells area fairly well, could you mean Wookey Hole? That's out from the Blue school end of town. Just looked at Zoopla, there's a 3 bed on at 169,950 which is bang outside the Blue school! Are your DC secondary school age or approaching it?

GuyMartinsSideburns Thu 08-Jan-15 14:44:39

Not wookey hole, Il look properly later when im not in a rush. I've got ds 9, dd 7 and ds almost 1. Looking at google itd be about a 35 min walk into town.

PrimroseEverdeen Thu 08-Jan-15 14:56:21

I live in bath but work on Bristol so know both areas. The towns on the Somerset side of bath i.e wells, rad stock, Paulton are so much nicer than those on the Bristol side such as Saltford, Keynsham, etc. Have you thought about Bradford on Avon? It's a beautiful little town. Wells is also gorgeous. Midsommer Norton is also a good choice.

Trowbridge isn't as nice but still a lot nicer than the Bristol suburbs, Keynsham, Longwell Green, Saltford, etc.

KingJoffreyObviouslyWatchesHol Thu 08-Jan-15 17:24:02

I live in Trowbridge. Some of it is pretty run down and we're a bit over run with charity and coffee shops but's pretty nice. No idea about the dodgy reputation - I moved here in 2000 and have never heard of any huge problems.

Plenty of restaurants, a cinema, sports centre, nice park. I like it. We have a nice house in a quiet cul-de-sac and am pretty sure I'll never move again.

I moved here from Bath, I've never regretted it.

RiojaHaze Thu 08-Jan-15 17:30:10

Trowbridge is fine. There's loads of redevelopment going on and has recently had an odeon, lots of restaurants, a big Next and Boots and TK MAXX come to the town.

They are currently developing another cinema which will bring more businesses to the town.

Definitely more going on than in Radstock. Frome is going arty but has some great cafés and independents, but from what I hear the growing house prices reflect this.

I live in Warminster and used to commute to Aztec West and the centre so it is doable and there are good rail links from here and Westbury.

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