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Would you buy a flat in an area you adore or a house in an area you quite like?

(54 Posts)
Nickname1980 Tue 17-May-16 21:11:46

We're in a position where we can afford a decent flat (3 bedrooms and a garden, needs a bit of work but we could do it) in our preferred area. We're in London. But, if we move to a different spot of London that we quite like, we can afford a Victorian house.

I am totally confused. The spot we love is where we live right now. It has great schools, great childcare, and we have a lot of friends here (although some of them are starting to move to other parts of London because they want the house).

The spot we quite like - where we can afford a house - has pretty good schools and we know one or two people.

We have kids, so part of me wonders if I'm mad to even consider buying another flat rather than a family house.

What would you do???

Randomposter Tue 17-May-16 21:17:51

I'd buy the house. No question.

Pocketrocket31 Tue 17-May-16 21:22:12

House 100%

BeauGlacons Tue 17-May-16 21:25:45

Well I think the market will have a big correction so I'd sell and rent for 18 months then buy a house where you are now.

Stars66 Tue 17-May-16 21:26:48

Buy the house. No question about it!

Nickname1980 Tue 17-May-16 21:27:48

I'm really tempted to do that beau. I'm trying to persuade by DH, but he's not convinced!

Do you think London will be part of the correction?

You're prob right, random and pocket. But I love my neighbourhood! I'm really struggling with the idea of leaving! Argh!

Wolfcub Tue 17-May-16 21:28:22

The house

lalalonglegs Tue 17-May-16 21:28:26

I went for the flat and rarely regret it smile.

CremeEggThief Tue 17-May-16 21:31:05

I'd go with the 3 bed flat, but my DS is 13 now. It sounds as if you're really settled and feel part of the community where you are; that's what jumped out at me from your post.

BeauGlacons Tue 17-May-16 21:32:34

It depends where in London you are. We sold up in London 12 months ago, including rentals.

BeauGlacons Tue 17-May-16 21:37:54

I hasten to add after more than 30 years. Having bought in 82, 87, 92, 2013.

twirlypoo Tue 17-May-16 21:38:18

If the flat could afford you a big enough space then I would prob go towards that. There's just me and DS and I am looking at larger flats as apposed to houses at the moment because I can afford a nicer flat and my money goes further.

twirlypoo Tue 17-May-16 21:38:40

If the flat could afford you a big enough space then I would prob go towards that. There's just me and DS and I am looking at larger flats as apposed to houses at the moment because I can afford a nicer flat and my money goes further.

BeauGlacons Tue 17-May-16 21:39:43

The London market reeks of 88 btw. It collapsed in 89. I broke even on the 1987 house.

Nickname1980 Tue 17-May-16 21:45:33

We're in Hackney, Beau, the (well - in my opinion) loveliest bit! That's so interesting that you say that. I keep thinking that prices are so nuts that surely something has to give... Because who can afford London these days otherwise?

I definitely do feel part of the community, CremeEgg, that's what's making the decision so hard.

I want the house for my family, but I just love our spot. It's perfect for us in terms of location and schools.

The flat is almost 1100sq ft but an awkward layout (it doesn't feel as "grown up" as a house either) and the house is 1300sq ft with a great layout.

Do you ever feel like you'll have to move again, lala? That's another reason for my confusion. If we buy the flat, we can't expand it one day; but the house would extend up into the loft.

Interesting that most people say "the house" - my siblings and parents etc all say the same! They think I'm mad to consider a flat. To be honest, they don't really get what I see in my neighbourhood though (or London!) smile

BeauGlacons Tue 17-May-16 21:55:59

If you can't extend it, don't buy it. What happens if you have the unplanned baby? When dc ate small property has to be able to expand with you.

lalalonglegs Tue 17-May-16 21:56:30

Yes, we will move one day but the flat suited our needs in terms of schools/neighbourhood at the time (and it was also extendable).

I agree with Beau by the way, I'm definitely getting a bad feeling about the housing market in the next few months. It definitely feels very last days of Rome.

forkhandles4candles Tue 17-May-16 21:58:15

The flat definitely. That is my situation and I really wouldn't change it. We are exactly where we want to be and have everything around us, including parks.

Randomposter Tue 17-May-16 22:00:24

Do you think you'll ever be able to afford a house in your part of Hackney? price crash predicted if we leave Europe. ( but that of course means the value of your flat will plummet ) if you think you'll be able to afford a house in a few years then maybe buy the flat? But if it's never going to be a possibility then I'd defo buy the house, I mean it's not like you don't like that area, you do, but you're just not used to it.
Good luck in whatever you decide smile

Nickname1980 Tue 17-May-16 22:19:48

We could only afford a house in the part of Hackney we live in if house prices crashed big time, Random! Otherwise they're £1.4m for the same size house as the one we're looking at in the other neighbourhood. Ouch. We don't have anywhere near that. But I wonder if they'll ever fall enough?

I keep watching prices get slashed, too,lala and beau. Now actually feeling seriously tempted to sell, rent and see what happens... I bought my very first flat in 2006, a few months before the 2007 crash! (But could never have got a mortgage in 2007 so I didn't end up regretting it.)

concertplayer Tue 17-May-16 22:27:37

If there is a correction- then it could be rather disappointing to wake up with 40% knocked off it. However, you are already on the property ladder and you know the market has always gone up
and down it's just that more recently in London prices have been
soaring
So long as a big correction would not leave you in
negative equity eg property worth less than mortgage then
your worst fears are over.The people who really need to watch it
are as always those who overstretch themselves borrowing wise
especially ftbs
It strikes me -and to be on the safe side -that if you move you may need to consider it to be your forever home as it could be years before an upward correction takes place.but this advice is only based on historical trends in the property over the last 30 years nothing is guaranteed.
I should also point out that we are in a new situation now as we have negative interest rates Further slips in int rate and there could
be another banking crises but this time the govt will not be able
to bail them out The pound will crash as banks ask their customers
to bail them out
The Referendum is not helping either and of course the govt is
trying to cool the market with new btl taxes and promises of
building programmes (though the latter will take some years
to impact on the market)
My feeling is that March 2016 was the last chance to move
as times now are much less certain.

BeauGlacons Tue 17-May-16 22:41:17

In your shoes at this point in the cycle I wouldn't gear up, I'd move out where there are good schools, you can afford enough save and have a longer term quality of life. What are secondary schools like in Hackney?

DiggersRest Wed 18-May-16 07:44:50

House every time.

I agree with pp re housing correction coming as the ridiculous prices can't keep going. Our house could have sold last year for 75% more than we paid for it 5 years earlier. It is truly bonkers.

I wouldn't STR though with a family as renting is so unpredictable (and not dead money as l hear thrown around!)

You like the area the house is in so it's not a massive leap. Can l ask why you want to move, is your current flat to small? Only l would hang on for a little while to see what's going to happen in the next 6 or so months.

Paffle Wed 18-May-16 08:00:56

House. Stamp duty is so huge now that you won't be able to afford to move again any time soon. House definitely.

LizaLemon Wed 18-May-16 08:02:56

Flats usually have more noise issues, they're usually lease-hold not freehold and you end up paying mammoth management fees for nothing. House if you can!

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