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To hold out for Oxford or get ourselves to Abingdon..?

(18 Posts)
Sooperswooper Tue 04-Aug-15 14:04:53

At the moment there appears to be very little within our budget in Oxford itself (or at least where we want to live- so within the ring road and walkable to the centre; ideally East Oxford or Marston/ Headington- the properties that are there that we've liked have all gone for well over the asking price and the other ones need a bit too much doing to them. We've looked in Risinghurst and Sandhills but then figured that if we're going to have to drive or bus into the centre of Oxford we may as well get more for our money and go out) Does the market pick up in the Autumn, does anyone know? There have been some beautiful houses within our price range for sale in the last 6 months, but of course, these have all been snapped up. I'm not sure if it's just a really bad time. Even the Estate Agents seem to all be saying that there is little choice at the moment.

If we can't get somewhere within walking distance, we're thinking that perhaps it's better to go slightly further afield; so kidlington or Abingdon- some colleagues have said that Abingdon is lovely so giving that serious consideration now. Although slightly concerned that it might flood (basing that, though, on little other than the fact the river is so close!)

We need to take into consideration getting into Oxford centre every day for 830am for work & to take ds to nursery so if anyone can advise on commute times, that would be amazing. Also; is it possible to cycle with a child on the back? Obviously it would be possible, but I suppose it's more whether it is crossing main roads as not too keen to do that with ds. Happy to do it myself though. Another consideration is getting to Didcot Parkway so that dh can get backwards and forwards to London as necessary.

Not sure whether to hold on for properties that might potentially come up in Oxford or whether we should really consider Abingdon. Schools aren't a consideration for us, so it's really the commuting time and the lifestyle I suppose. Thank you! grin

greencottage Tue 04-Aug-15 17:14:12

I definitely wouldn't cycle from Abingdon with a child. The roads are horrendous. Abingdon is ok-ish, a bit down-at-heel. Pretty ordinary suburbia mostly and although there is a nice bit of river, it's not very accessible for recreation/walks etc. and last year the flooding was bad - some roads impassable for days. The bus into central Oxford is probably around 20 mins.

If I were you I would look at Wallingford. It's about the same distance out of Oxford as Abingdon and has very good bus links to Oxford, as well as Reading and Henley. There are lovely parks and river banks, and it's a very nice little market town. Houses are around the same price as Abingdon. The schools in Wallingford are much better than the schools in Abingdon, also (I teach in both areas, so I speak from experience and not just on basis of Ofsted reports).

greencottage Tue 04-Aug-15 17:15:03

Sorry, I've just noticed schools aren't a consideration.
Wallingford is just as handy for Didcot Parkway as Abingdon, maybe more so.

pinkje Tue 04-Aug-15 18:47:30

Reading your OP it sounds like your heart is in Oxford so for that reason I would say hold on for the right property; you may regret it otherwise.

preggersbycheggers Tue 04-Aug-15 21:49:57

There isn't much on the market at the moment and what is on the market gets snapped up very quickly. We sold within 2 weeks of going on the market.

Getting into Oxford from Wallingford would be easy and I agree it's a nice market town. The market towns are very different from living in Oxford though?

Justwhy Tue 04-Aug-15 21:53:43

If you don't have to worry about schools I would hold out for Oxford.

Sooperswooper Wed 05-Aug-15 07:44:16

pink you're right. Heart is in Oxford! We're moving there because we love the city and love being close to it so actually, we're going to hold out for something within the vicinity (and preferably the ring road). I did a recce on the way back home last night and that reconfirmed it. Now it's just a question of being as quick as we can off the mark if something comes up that we like in Oxford. Hopefully the market will pick up a little come late August. The problem is, it seems that there are distinct brackets- either at around 325k - 350k in risinghurst/kennington/a bit outside, or on for 385+ in the areas that we want. Problem is, these ones all seem to go to sealed bids or have at least 6 or 7 offers well above asking price which blows our budget out of the water! It would be ok if they just went for, say 5k over asking, but sadly they don't seem to so it's a bit of a limbo land between about 350-400!

CharlesRyder Wed 05-Aug-15 07:59:19

You could do that thing that Phil and Kirsty do and leaflet the roads you are interested in. They quite often seem to turn things up that way!

Sooperswooper Wed 05-Aug-15 12:39:25

Good call! charles Do you think that works?? I wouldn't be at all adverse to doing that or getting my folks to seeing as they live very nearby Alternatively I've been trying to convince dh that we should apply for location location as they're advertising but my pleas fall on deaf ears along with muttered under the breath "over my dead body" so i'm sensing that one is a non starter.

CharlesRyder Wed 05-Aug-15 13:28:02

I don't reckon they would do it if there wasn't a reasonable hit rate.

I would definitely hold on for central Oxford. We used to live in St Clements. It was great!

paxtecum Wed 05-Aug-15 13:30:52

There was a lot of flooding in Oxford last year so beware.

fastdaytears Wed 05-Aug-15 13:35:12

Have you considered West? I'm Botley and it's definitely possible to walk into town, or a really easy bike ride/bus.

TeamBacon Wed 05-Aug-15 13:36:34

Hold out for Oxford. The commute in isn't great, and it's only going to get worse. I think flooding only really happens in Botley/Hinksey/Grandpont area, so avoid that area (it floods fairly regularly). Headington /Cowley etc are brilliant.

Sinkingfeeling Wed 05-Aug-15 13:44:55

We lived in Oxford for about 20 years and moved out three years ago. I still work in Oxford sometimes and the commute in can be awful, especially at the moment when it seems every main artery into the city has roadworks. Oxford obviously has a lot going for it though, and there's always plenty to do here. Rail links to Reading/London/Birmingham and further are very good. As someone else said, choose your area carefully - a large part of the Abingdon Road (South) flooded last year. Headington and Marston are on higher ground! If schools aren't an issue there are lots of areas to choose from - have you looked at the Florence Park and Iffley Fields areas? Further out, there are villages like Horspath and Kennington which you could cycle into Oxford to relatively easily. PM me if you'd like any more specific info. Good luck!

Sooperswooper Wed 05-Aug-15 16:07:24

Thanks all. we're definitely going to hold out. We are lucky enough to be in a position where we can, seeing as my parents have kindly extended an invitation to stay for as long as we need (especially kind as they're in the middle of a move to Kidlington!) charles there is a lovely house on at the moment on Cave street- it's such a shame that I don't think it has the potential to extend as it's only two beds and we'd need to add another one at some point. A beautiful one on Howard Road in East Ox too but it's going to go for more than we can afford.

sinking That's what I wondered about going outside the ring road (more than, say, Kennington) And thank you- i have been wondering about Kennington but hear differing things! Can you just cycle all the way to the city by the river (past the Isis?) from Kennington? I absolutely love iffley fields- in fact my son was christened in St Mary's in Iffley. We do know Oxford well, and we've lived there for a few years too so luckily we're not (too) in the dark about areas. It's just the housing market that's dictating it now!

Justwhy Wed 05-Aug-15 16:56:03

I have a friend who moved to Kennington from the city centre. She is very happy there.

Sinkingfeeling Wed 05-Aug-15 18:23:38

Yes, you can cycle from Kennington into Oxford along the river. There's a railway bridge at the back of the Tandem pub which takes you down to the river, past Iffley lock and the Isis. The bridge itself is pretty steep though, so may not be easy to negotiate with a child on the bike, and the river path is muddy and dark in the winter. You can also cycle into Oxford along the back of the Abingdon Rd through Hinksey park though. Iffley area is lovely, but pricey. We lived there when my DC were small and had many happy times feeding the ducks at the lock!

Sinkingfeeling Wed 05-Aug-15 18:44:09

Meant to say that I like both Abingdon and Wallingford, though they're definitely a very different proposition to living in Oxford. Wallingford more characterful than Abingdon, but bus journey to Oxford quicker from Abingdon. Both have some great independent shops. Abingdon has amazing French patisserie, deli and bookshop. Wallingford has a couple of good bookshops and a fab fabric & patchwork shop if that's your thing.

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