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Nice place in ugly area or ugly place in nice area?

(41 Posts)
Lilylo Sun 08-May-16 00:04:35

Hi all!

I would like to get some opinions from fellow mumsnetters. Would you prefer to live in a really nice flat/house in an area that is a bit ugly/ run down/ dirty or to live in a bad flat/ house in a nice area?

Location vs nice home: which one do you value the most?

DramaAlpaca Sun 08-May-16 00:44:31

Location all the time. You can always improve a bad house, but you can't single handedly improve a bad area.

ZenNudist Sun 08-May-16 00:55:27

Middle ground. No point paying over the odds for the best location. Choose an area that's on the up and get more for your money.

I think you have to go for the space you need then aesthetics are optional extras.

LemonRedwood Sun 08-May-16 00:58:27

Ugly places can be fixed. Ugly areas not do much.

MagnifiMad Sun 08-May-16 01:16:03

I've heard you should go for worst house in best area rather than best house in worse area. I would tend to agree- location is more important.

ontherightpath Sun 08-May-16 07:54:58

Go for the best location. There is always something you can do to an ugly house to make it better. Living in a location you don't like and find visually unapealling is not a good experience (found this out the hard way).

MarlowWills1 Sun 08-May-16 08:03:20

We bought an ugly house in a beautiful, chocolate box village inan Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
Over the years we've transformed it inside and out and, as from last week when the front elevation was finally finished, it's now a beautiful house in a beautiful area.
You can change everything except the lication, given emough time and money so I'd say location every time smile

SansaClegane Sun 08-May-16 08:05:36

Always location. Always.

You can change houses so much, but there's nought you can do about improving your area single-handedly.

NapQueen Sun 08-May-16 08:06:14

The location will sell your house if you ever want to move on. By all means buy a beautiful house but if it's in a bad location you will either (1) not sell it (2) not sell it at a decent price (3) take an age to sell it.

smellyboot Sun 08-May-16 08:08:01

Location every time

Tiredemma Sun 08-May-16 08:09:21


TheSuspiciousMsWhicher Sun 08-May-16 08:12:12

Location every single time.

Lilylo Sun 08-May-16 08:37:13

It sounds like the general consensus is location location location, which confirms my idea sad

A bit of background: I am about to move to a fantastic flat in a not nice area.

Long story short, the place was purchased and gifted to us by family, so we can't just sell it and buy something else atm (perhaps in 5 or 10 years, not now).

I am happy and I am moving to a great flat (currently renting) but I am afraid I will never love the neighborhood, which is currently considered "up and coming".

The reality is that it is a depressing poor and ugly area with "islands" of luxury developments (I am going to live in one of those), which frankly also feels a bit ethically wrong.


Fluffycloudland77 Sun 08-May-16 08:40:01

We had to go for a bad area, it's worked out well. It's really quiet here & the new builds were all in are well kept by the owners.

originalmavis Sun 08-May-16 08:41:34

When we were looking years ago (over 20) there was one 'up and coming' area. Nowadays it is a weird mix of million pound townhouses next to hostels, b&bs and squats.

Because of local developments traffic is pretty much at a standstill most of the time and crime is still quite high.

I am glad we didn't move there. The way prices have risen we couldn't have afforded to sell and buy in a nicer area.

Lilylo Sun 08-May-16 08:44:58

fluffy why did you consider that area bad? Was if unsafe, ugly or just badly

TomTomKitten Sun 08-May-16 08:46:53


If you walk down the road and feel safe, can admire a beautiful view, have nice neighbours, etc. it will make you feel a heck of a lot better than if you live somewhere with the opposite attributes.

You can always make a house lovely on the inside even if it isn't chocolate box perfect.

Helmetbymidnight Sun 08-May-16 08:49:36

Better to have the shittiest house in a great area than a great house in a shitty area as Shakespeare said.

Zampa Sun 08-May-16 08:51:06

I bought in an unpopular area 11 years ago. Colleagues expressed shock and horror and questioned my safety ...

My flat has almost tripled in value and people are now envious.

If it is genuinely "up and coming", in 5-10 years, you'll be really pleased to have got the flat.

Lilylo Sun 08-May-16 08:54:33

zampa you give me a bit of hope! Everyone says it is up and coming, but you know, virtually anything in London is said to be "up and coming" to justify the outrageous prices...

Fluffycloudland77 Sun 08-May-16 09:07:47

It's got a large rough council estate at the bottom of the town, a big factory and a car auction place. Rough pubs dh was warned not to go into because the patrons are all cunts and you wouldn't be welcome.

It's a place you wouldn't feel safe walking around.

Then you come to the top of the town and this new estate, built 20 years ago and it's BMW/Merc/Audi/Porsche land. Lovely lake with ducks. Our houses built 4 years ago have been tacked onto this estate.

Kids all play out in the road & lots of dog walkers up and down the road all day. It feels very safe here.

People still wrinkle their nose when I say where we live though but our house is lovely.

TheSuspiciousMsWhicher Sun 08-May-16 09:11:39

Why can't you move for 5+ years OP? Just being nosey but if the flat has been gifted to you, can't you sell whenever you want?

Lilylo Sun 08-May-16 09:20:17

thesuspicious it is a complicated family matter, essentially PILS (who bought the flat) are not very reasonable people and the place is both in DH and MIL's names.

I think down the line when DC are involved there will be more leverage to propose to sell it and buy somewhere else (let's say if we want to move to a better area for schools or safety issues) but atm we have to suck it up.

Lilylo Sun 08-May-16 09:22:11

fluffy that sounds a lot like the area I am moving to. New, shiny and lovely estate in a really ugly and grim area.

As long as you stay within the estate it is great, but if you dare to venture out for a walk... confused

cherrytango Sun 08-May-16 09:26:28

Location is always more important to me, we live in a 2 bed flat even though we could get a 4+ bed house if we moved 5 miles away. However I think what is a 'good' location in London is often different from elsewhere - our area is quite run down and dirty from many points of view, but very expensive and sought after as it's so central (zone 1), and definitely on the rise. Crime is statistically high, as it is everywhere in central London, but I've never experienced any at all while living here. Traditional naice areas would be quite boring to me - the suburban bits in zone 4/5 which wouldn't have anything interesting nearby for us to do, as we have older teen dcs and we go out all the time here. So it depends a lot on your lifestyle I think.

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