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Commuting to Edinburgh - Stirling / Falkirk?

(80 Posts)
aforestgrewandgrew Fri 14-Oct-16 14:11:04

Ideally we'd like to be in Edinburgh but on a budget of approx £180K I'm not sure we can afford it!

We've got family in Glasgow so I was thinking Stirling / Falkirk could be good. Plus although we're looking at working in Edinburgh now, I guess easy access to Glasgow for future jobs could be good too.

My other half is Scottish but not me, my only knowledge of Scotland is visiting not actually living there. DP is very easy going, happy to go with what I want (i.e. leaving me to do all the research!) so I'm hoping MN can help!

What are Stirling / Falkirk like? What are the schools like? Is the commute OK?

Are there other areas I should be considering?

Alternatively any tips on how to live in Edinburgh for £180K would be amazing!

VoteyMcVoteFace Fri 14-Oct-16 14:20:17

The commute, by train to either place, is easy but expensive. Driving is unpredictable as youve got either the M8 or M9 to deal with and they can be busy, the M8 especially (that's the one you would use to get to Falkirk). Like all towns they both have their good and bad bits. Stirling is probably more pretty and historical, and in a more rural location. Falkirk is a bit post-industrial and doesn't have a great deal going for it, IMO.

Edinburgh's not out of the question on that money, depends how big a place you need.

You could also consider the Borders, which has a new train line, or East Lothian, though there are expensive villages there.

aforestgrewandgrew Fri 14-Oct-16 14:35:23

Thanks for the reply.

I did look down the Borders line, but was put off Esbank, Newtongrange and Gorebridge by comments I found on an old Mumsnet thread! (Happy to be convinced otherwise!)

A few of the properties we could afford around Gala look stunning, and we do have a couple of friends there - but it's such a long commute - an hour in, and then over to Glasgow again if we're visiting family, I think perhaps it's a bit too far.

I did get excited about it for a while, to the point that I looked up sold prices - interestingly most of the sold prices I looked at in the Borders seemed to be have gone for under the asking price, which is unusual in Scotland, hey? Perhaps they were overpriced as everyone thought prices would go up with the new train but they haven't as much as predicted?

If only it was a super high speed train to Edinburgh it would be perfect grin

aforestgrewandgrew Fri 14-Oct-16 14:43:58

Edinburgh's not impossible, but I think we'll be lucky to find somewhere we fit. We need 3 bedrooms and I'd really like a garden too, although happy with a nice tenement with shared garden.

We might get lucky - we're not afraid of "quirky" layouts. I found a couple of places recently that were advertised as 2 beds but actually had attic rooms that were perfect for being a 3rd bedroom.

Check out this place for example - advertised as a 2 bed for OO £160K but if you check out the floorplans it has 3 bedrooms if you count the attic.

Also I found this one just a smidgen out out of our budget I think, but interesting as it's advertised as a 2 bed again, but the there's an attic room that comes off one of the bedrooms. Our youngest would be perfectly happy with us going through her room to get to bed, that'd be fine for few years anyway I reckon!

aforestgrewandgrew Fri 14-Oct-16 14:46:16

So, it might be possible (if I keep everything crossed!). But I notice there are very few in our budget.

As we're going to take the plunge and have to sell up before we have a place to buy (if I've understood the difference between the English & Scottish systems correctly) I'm worried we might go for it and there might be nothing available in Edinburgh at that time.

I wanted to widen our options a bit.

WankersHacksandThieves Fri 14-Oct-16 19:57:51

I may be biased, but Stirling every time. I'm originally from Edinburgh and now live in Stirling, we also briefly lived in a small town near Falkirk. Happy to help with any info. smile

prettybird Fri 14-Oct-16 20:51:01

Have you thought of Linlithgow? I've seen MNers on threads like this speak warmly of the place.

teenyveg Fri 14-Oct-16 21:04:20

Another vote for Stirling. I really like - up a few times a month.

I know a group of young people who organise really interesting stuff like pop up cinemas, flash art sales. It seemsfrom the outside that there is lots going on.

WankersHacksandThieves Fri 14-Oct-16 21:05:49

I don't think I've thought of a sport or activity to do that I haven't found available in Stirling/environs. It's a great place to raise kids.

DoloresVanCartier Fri 14-Oct-16 21:08:14

Have you thought of further east? Perth etc?

SauvignonPlonker Fri 14-Oct-16 22:09:16

Agree re: Linlithgow - it's on the train line to Glasgow & Edinburgh. Linlithgow Bridge has cheaper property & you might get something there.

You could also consider Livingston - it has good train links, is almost on the M8 & has good shopping.

Perhaps think about areas just over the Bridge in Fife e.g. Dunfermline,,Dalgety Bay as it's fairly easy to get to Glasgow. But don't even consider it if you're commuting by car; hell on Earth!

Groovee Sat 15-Oct-16 12:31:29

I know the owners in Broomhall. It's a nice area and good schooling! Handy for trams and we have south Gyle station to get to fife or to haymarket then to Glasgow. Buses are pretty good and easy access to the M8.

But the competition for Broomhall has been amazing. Number 87 was recently up for sale and had numerous notes of interest before the first viewing. The owner had thought it would take longer to sell and only had about 5 weeks to pack up and move and find somewhere before her new house was ready.

That would be the only thing is the competition in buying a house for the Gylemuir catchment.

aforestgrewandgrew Sat 15-Oct-16 13:45:24

I've just seen there are lots of responses, thanks!

Groovee what a brilliant coincidence! Great to hear it's a nice area, and the transport links sound perfect. Do you have a feel for how much over "offers over" properties are going for round there by any chance?

WankersHacksandThieves Sat 15-Oct-16 13:58:29

I'm guessing that Forrester High must have upped it's game? I moved from one rough council estate to another in the vicinity of Broomhall but wouldn't swap to Forrester High as it was really terrible. I ended up getting a job so i could pay my bus fares back to Firrhill smile

aforestgrewandgrew Sat 15-Oct-16 14:22:17

Thanks for the Linlithgow tip, it looks like there's not much in our budget there, but there is a little, I'll add it to the list.

Livingstone certainly does tick a lot of boxes, but because it's a new town it's not the top of my list. Being somewhere like Edinburgh or Stirling makes my heart sing. Roundabouts and modern houses makes me feel - meh. (Apologies to anyone in Livingstone or new towns!)

Having said that, we live in modern housing now, so it may well be that's the compromise we end up making in reality! But I'd like to keep the new towns up my sleeve IYSWIM and try to find somewhere else first. And the houses we can afford in Edinburgh are modern, that's fine for me, but ideally I'd like to live somewhere that has history & character, even if my bit of it doesn't. I'll just covert the beautiful old stone houses from afar and hope I can afford one, one day! grin

Groovee Sat 15-Oct-16 14:22:27

Wankers, my sisters went to Forries away back in the last 70's and absolutely flipped their lids when they heard where dd was going! Dd got good results (well we gloss over maths) and I've found their pastoral care amazing with all dd has been through. They have a school of football like broughton and kids actively choose to go to Forries over Broughton now. Ds is happy there too. Although the previous head had a big scandal after being seconded, he really has turned the school around. Some pupils still choose Craigmount as an out of catchment but it is worth visiting Forrester as I found it a much more vibrant place with staff who seemed like they wanted to be there.

Groovee Sat 15-Oct-16 14:23:43

Dh went to Firrhill and refused to move anywhere in catchment for there. Yet it is a thriving good school now too lol.

aforestgrewandgrew Sat 15-Oct-16 14:24:22

Apologies also if I've got the wrong end of the stick about Livingstone. I've never actually been there, just going on what DP has said.

Happy to be corrected!

Groovee Sat 15-Oct-16 14:27:15

Speaking around some house go way over the asking price. But 87 was up for offers over £195,000 and sold for £203,000. Check out the website for the prices. The only thing with Broomhall and Wester Broom is many houses have been extended and changed from the original 2/3 bedroomed houses. I do know of one family who paid £247,000 around 2007 who's neighbour sold in 2012ish and only got £160,000 for a similar house.

dementedma Sat 15-Oct-16 14:30:46

Stirling is great. Loads of sports and activities, excellent schools and university, good pubs and the countryside is amazing with lots of good walks and activities in easy reach.
You also have the old town with the castle and a good shopping mall. Commute to Edinburgh or Glasgow easily, also now a direct train route to London.

aforestgrewandgrew Sat 15-Oct-16 14:31:55

According to these league tables (although of course they don't show the whole picture!), Firrhill is fourth from top but Forrester is fourth below average for Edinburgh.

Really good to get an inside perspective. It'll be a few years until we need secondary so if it's on the up, that's great.

We didn't choose the school locally that was best on paper, for DS. There are two and one gets a better OFSTED report and I assumed we'd send the DC there, but on visiting I found the ethos of the "worse" school was so much more in tune with our values, and some great teaching was happening there. DS has thrived there.

aforestgrewandgrew Sat 15-Oct-16 14:33:34

Groovee that's interesting, thanks smile

aforestgrewandgrew Sat 15-Oct-16 14:34:49

Stirling's sounding great, thanks everyone, I think we need to visit!

WankersHacksandThieves Sat 15-Oct-16 14:38:58

Groovee, that's good to know - I went to high school late 70s/early 80s. Firrhill just had and possible still has a better mixed catchment than Forrester and I guess for me it was also familiar rather than going somewhere new. I lived in the South and West of the city most of the years I lived there. If I were the OP, I'd also consider Colinton Mains/Firhill/Longstone/Redhall/Juniper Green for Firrhill catchment and you also have Carrick Knowe and Clermiston on the west which might be worth a look. As with most places, a few streets can make a difference as to whether you'd live there or not.

we lived in penicuik for a while which has good schools and transport links though maybe not so much the character you want. I think Musselburgh may also be worth a look but that's not an area I am too familiar with. I have family that live over by the Asda on the west and went to Portobello High and did well there.

I'd still choose Stirling though as much as I love Edinburgh.

aforestgrewandgrew Sat 15-Oct-16 14:40:24

Groovee do you mean this one? (looks like 87 is a flat).

(The internet is a slightly scary but marvelous thing, hey?!)

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