Owning your own home

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  • I mean it looks like a house in the north, where I grew up - it's very definitely not in the north.

    This is a road near my school:

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  • Looks lovely!

  • Filling in the side return would make it harder to get my Christiania child chariot safely behind the house (if I'm buying into that dream I'm going all in).

    Plus it's only a 9 minute cycle to Gail's. I think I'm actually coming round to it even more.

  • The views and light from the back of the house are incredible (south-west facing over allotments, a canal, a floodplain and distant hills)<

    What more could you want?

    You don't look at your house from the outside much. And it looks just fine to me. Nice windows as suggested and it might look great in an utilitarian way.

  • I think part of the problem is you are moving from what is objectively an extremely attractive period property into potentially a house that onslow, on keeping up appearances, would live in.

    I personally think you've made your mind up by posing the question but I quite understand your willingness to see if others have been able to compromise on things like this.

  • It's been really useful hearing the different responses here.

    I didn't think I had made my mind up about it but perhaps I'd been more keen on it than I realised.

    We viewed it last Saturday in the rain, being rushed into a 15 minute slot at the end of a long day of viewings with two small children in tow, but it's been a bit of a grower.

  • Massive ramble incoming, sorry. Upon rereading I was maybe a bit strong. Our house is huge and location is wonderful and I’m very happy with our choices, but the house itself is so sad/frustrating to live in and it does get to me a bit when I look up from wrangling two kids and trying to survive in life. Obvs rarely a lull to do that though!

    It doesn’t help that two near-neighbours in similar properties have really knocked it out of the park with thoughtful refurbishments, highlights how nice ours could be with the application of time and money we won’t have for a long time. When we were scoping out the town walking around, long before it came to market, I even commented on how nice our little part of things is apart from the really sad house on the end which we obviously now occupy. Thanks, fates. Well played. *

    I really thought through what I wanted to do to the property before we moved in, and those ambitions haunt me every now and again so try to keep expectations low/realistic.

    Your comments on the views from the place honestly sold me tho, do it. Something like that really highlights the benefit of moving somewhere different and you’ll feel it every day. We’re atop a big hill on the edge of town and can’t see shit, plus our garden is overlooked on two sides by retirement flats while we wait for some planting to mature. It’s a very London z5 suburbia vibe until we walk around the corner and look out over hills across to distant villages/westbury white horse or whatever and get the semi rural payoff.

    * funnily enough another house that caught our eye on a wander also came to market. Similar price, amazing views, just a tiny bit further out. With benefit of local knowledge though we’d never consider it due to traffic and prospective development. So sometimes what seems like the best answer from the outside maybe isn’t. We still coo at it and its views over the valley every time we go past tho.

  • Yeah views from the house beats views of the house for sure.

    As others have said, windows and planting will make an enormous difference. Get a proper garden designer (nb. Not landscaper) or spend a lot of time reading up as this will make more difference than anything else.

  • Side porch with a front door and a back door to make through access straightforward but also keep the child chariot a teeny bit more secure.

    It's probably not an effective use of funds, I just don't like not being able to see the front door from the road.

  • Yes! We are in a 1930s-1950s terrace with cream render on the upper storey - on the other side of the street are beautiful old stone houses. We have a great view. And everything has its charm. At least it's got decent sized windows!

  • Has anyone bought an extremely ugly house in a nice area?

    May be worth pointing out that every generation or so, we considered building ugly but now acceptable or even embrace them.

    Victorian terraced houses with two tiny front windows and zero front garden were deemed a horrorshow, especially the back to back terraced by the Victorian/Edwardian.

    Nowadays, they gone for silly money like 500k right opposite our flat.

    Point being, the LA council flats are ugly, but in 50 years time, our view may changed.

  • Hmmm, or now even. I’ve lived in a pretty good range of houses from Chocolate box 17th Century haunted ones to new build with some 2 up, 2 down, Victorian terrace, Warehouse conversion and Architect designed TMH fodder in between. We picked our ex-LA house for this move as a long term (20 years) bet as the layout works, they are pretty light, it had a decent sized garden, and crucially it was in a good area with a nice local school. All else being equal, I’d take this objectively ugly house over the stone floors/no insulation/shoddy workmanship/dark corridors/over-looked narrow garden/listing restrictions previous homes have offered. You can make anything look pretty good anyway.

  • You can make anything look pretty good anyway.

    Brick slips and vinyl wrap all the things.

  • Exactly, carbon effect vinyl wrap, grey window frames, astro-turfed front lawn, 6 foot tall ‘Live, Laugh, Love’ neon on the roof and some over-sized house numbers. 💥

  • Exactly, carbon effect vinyl wrap, grey window frames, astro-turfed front lawn, 6 foot tall ‘Live, Laugh, Love’ neon on the roof and some over-sized house numbers. 💥

    Hi Neighbour!

  • Have you done Some major renovations on your house in Southwark? Do you remember how much Building Control charged you and how much of an arse on it was? I want to hear from you! Any advice?

  • Most councils have pricing structures on their BC website. I’d suggest going private to make the process as smooth as possible and allow for a bit more wiggle room. We’ve used London Building Control a couple of times.

  • You can make anything look pretty good anyway.

    Or horrdeous! Classic Victorian terraced converted into… I don’t know what that is.

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  • Their kids did a line drawing of the house and 9t was interpreted literally

  • Maybe they really like a game of squash?

  • I have a love/hate relationship with the front of ours. We've done quite a bit to it, but mostly out of necessity rather than just for looks. It will get re-painted again this year most likely, 1) because ms_com (who chose the colour) doesn't like the colour and 2) the previous painters were shit and there has been some patching and fixing done since they were round. It's definitely more practical now though.

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  • Not going to lie - not a fan of the new colour, but all the other work is good.

    Keep it simple with white imo.

  • not a fan of the new colour

    It is on the hate side of my love/hate thing, it's true. But I do not have a say in creative decisions here.

  • How much did the front garden wall set you back? Need to do ours.

  • It was part of ripping the whole front out, laying new flagstones and a path. All of it was about £7k, not sure how much of that was wall. Annoying Travis Perkins bricks are still weeping salt a year on though.

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Owning your own home

Posted by Avatar for Hobo @Hobo