Leaving London – an update, almost

May 24, 2013

Battersea Power StationI wanted to give an update on our moving situation and potential plans to leave London, which I wrote about a while ago. So far we have progressed slightly, but not very far down the track. I wouldn’t say the plan has hit the buffers, but we’ve certainly stalled.

We’re beginning to narrow our search area down, thanks to the awesome Buying Agent for a really helpful chat, and my lovely friend Claire who emailed me outlining an awful lot of potential places. And in the rare moments Eliza’s asleep and we’re both awake, we’ve been trying to do some extensive and detailed research (aka look on RightMove and Google journey times).

But then apart from the fact that these moments are so rare, the problem is the areas we’re looking at aren’t that much more reasonable than London, price-wise. And then we’d be adding an expensive commute and a car on top of that. Or dealing with a route that’s been dubbed ‘Britain’s worst train service’ (really).

Moving even further out is the obvious, and slightly scary, compromise. But I love that Alex is home for Eliza’s bath time, and I don’t want him to spend hours stuck on a train and never seeing us in the morning or evening. And I remember that we have everything on our doorstep here: an area we love, a nursery Eliza is now incredibly happy and settled in within walking distance, parks and playgroups, central London within 20 minutes, and all our friends really close. And I think, why are we even considering moving? Then I have another look at house prices here and we’re right back where we started.

Although it is exciting, planning our new future, I do wish we would know where we’re going to end up already. Or maybe we should just close our eyes and put a pin in a map? Thanks for all the suggestions on the last post, any ideas are all gratefully received. But in the meantime…keep watching this space. With the next update, we might be full steam ahead.

(And here’s 36 reasons to love London).


  • Marissa Coltman (Little Rascal Reviews)

    May 25, 2013 at 6:32 pm

    We live near Redhill. Redhill itself isn’t too picturesque but good connections to London Bridge & Victoria and surrounded by nice villages and towns that are i.e. Reigate. We moved here from Blackheath two and a half years ago for more space & greenery. Come & join us! 🙂

    1. gillian

      June 6, 2013 at 10:50 am

      I’m getting on Rightmove as we speak! x

  • Sophie

    May 29, 2013 at 1:12 pm

    Ah what a hard decision! I can see why you have pros and cons to each. This sounds a bit silly but it’s a way my sister taught me to make smart decisions (she is a HR manager and uses it to pick who to fire – bit scary but it works!). Both you and your husband (and anyone else you trust the opinion of) to list the three top things they consider the MOST important of the house or area (for example closeness to work/school, beauty of the area, pricing) and then score these points. So say you and your hubby both say ‘price’ this gets 2 points, if only you say ‘beauty of the area’ then it would get 1 point.

    Then get you, your hubby and again anyone who you trust the opinion of into a meeting and list houses or areas that you have looked at on rightmove and then all vote to see if this house has the ‘important points’. Say there are four of you who all vote that one has the right ‘price’ then this get’s a score of 8 as price was considered to have the importance of ‘2’ – so the more important the point the higher the score.

    This way you keep your heart out of the equation and allow the head to rule, you can always allow a little 5 point bonus for a ‘heart’ place! 🙂

    Hope this makes any sense, sorry it’s a little wishy-washy! I can completely understand why you wouldn’t want to leave London, I’ve only visited even though I only live an hour away but I already absolutely love it. I hope you come to the right decision.

    1. gillian

      June 6, 2013 at 10:46 am

      This is brilliant, thank you so much, such good advice. Although we’ve not sit down and done it properly yet, you’ve really made me think about prioritising the really important aspects first. I think the work commuting time (e.g. the time we all get to spend together) is coming out on top -really making me think again about staying in London…

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