Choosing an area

The pandemic has encouraged many people to re-evaluate their life-style and consider making the move towards living their rural dream. The yearning for a taste of the good life and an escape from the city, has been matched with traditional barriers being removed. The growth in home working has opened up a new opportunities and demand for rural properties is booming.

Based on our personal experiences we have put together our things to consider if you are thinking of making the move; from selecting the area to choosing your home, read on to get genuine advice on moving to the country.

Family connections and support network

The first thing to consider when choosing an area is whether you have an established support network of family and friends. The help that this network can be life changing, particularly when you have a young family. For this reason many people feel drawn to move back to where they or their partner grew up. However, it’s important to remember that Grandparents or friends may not share your expectations for the support they are prepared to give. It’s definitely worth having an honest and upfront conversation to gauge their feelings in advance.

Moving somewhere completely new can be a challenge, consider that it takes time to develop new friendships and although having small children is a great way to meet new people, real attachments take time to develop.

Outdoor activities

If your life revolves around mountaineering then settling in the fens perhaps might not be a sensible move. So, think about your hobbies and pastimes and decide what’s important. If you have spent years travelling to the coast at weekends, then this could be the opportunity for you to make that a permanent move.

Property prices and making an offer

The value of houses is dictated by supply and demand. If you have your heart set on the prettiest of Cotswold village or a prime sea-view, be prepared to pay a premium. There are vast differences in property prices across the UK and this is the same for rural areas. Thorough research will help you understand the local market, so when are ready to make an offer, you can be confident it is fair and move quickly. You can now view historical property prices on the internet and this is a great tool for building a picture of the local market. For many moving from London all property seems cheaper but unless you have unlimited funds then paying market prices is still important.

If you are considering a move to Scotland then be aware that although some properties are sold at a fixed price, most are sold through a ‘blind bidding’ system. This means the seller will ask for offers either over or around a minimum price.  Sellers will have a Home Report completed and based on this, how many other people are bidding and how much you want the property, you then make a decision on high to make your offer.

Transport links

There’s always a link between property prices and proximity to commuter routes, whether major road or rail links. Paying less for your home could increase your commute, and you have to decide what that extra time is worth.  Also travelling to school and other amenities should be factored in. Calculate train, fuel and parking costs, and as rural transport links are more limited, you may have to budget for purchasing at least one car. If your work needs you to travel frequently, or you take regular holidays overseas, being close to an airport may be important.

Driving to Europe

If your family holidays revolve around driving to Europe to camp or ski, then living in the North of England or Scotland perhaps isn’t a wise move. We fall into this category and a three hour drive to Dover is definitely our limit.

Access to city life

Having convenient access to vibrant cities whilst living in a peaceful local environment can be very attractive. Being able to easily go shopping, eat out, visit cinemas, theatres, museums and galleries, may be important and therefore living closer to a big city may be a good choice.

To conclude

There are many things to consider when choosing an area and everyone’s decision making process and criteria will be different. House buying and moving is an expensive and emotional undertaking, so invest time upfront in your research and you should reap the benefits of all your hard-work.

Read our other articles on Market town, village… where’s your perfect place? and finding your perfect home.

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