31 January 2017

Young professionals in Carlisle are taking the opportunity to get on the property ladder up to nine years earlier than the average first time buyer, in an area of Carlisle that has undergone a £50m transformation.

With hundreds of new homes already built by Lovell, the Raffles Estate area is proving to be a popular address for young people wanting to make home ownership a reality. It has a winning combination of affordable house prices and a location that offers the complete lifestyle; easy access to work in the city centre, great local community facilities and open spaces on the doorstep.

Clare Noakes, regional sales director for Lovell in the North West, said: “Lovell was part of the Raffles Vision project team established in 2002 to revitalise the estate which has since benefited from a major £50m phased regeneration programme.

“Now, over a decade on, we are seeing a totally transformed community which is attracting new people who desire to live in this area, as well as empowering young first time buyers to realise their home ownership dream much earlier than the national average of 30 years old.”

Eventually there will be 500 new homes built here, over several phases, the majority of them for private sale. Lovell has just recently launched its latest phase of 52 new homes at New Acres, directly neighbouring the hugely popular Parkside. Earlier phases also include The Elms, Parkview and The Hawthorns.

Current prices at New Acres start from £115,500 for a two-bedroom home, while three-bedroom homes start at £147,000, considerably less than the UK average price of a starter home, at just short of £200,000.

At just 21, Alex Nicolson is nine years younger than a typical first time buyer, but she is already thinking about her next home purchase. She moved into a two bedroom Hamilton property built by Lovell, recently.

Having begun saving years ago, Alex, who works at a building society, was keen to get onto the property ladder in Carlisle rather than spend years renting.

“I didn’t see the point in renting,” said Alex. “In fact, I thought I would have to be saving for another couple of years and was thinking about a home at New Acres, before the property at Parkside came up for sale.

“I saw it on the internet and came to look with my parents and thought ‘wow, this is an amazing little place’. I loved the fact that the living room is at the back so I have my own private haven and it’s beautiful in the day because the sun shines in.

“It’s brilliant. I overlook the park so I can go for long walks when I’m not working and people are so friendly. Plus I’m close to the city centre where I work. My father used to live where I am now and he has commented on how the area has changed and how lovely it is. I am still saving and hope to buy another house and rent my current home out – and I wouldn’t hesitate to buy a bigger house in this area. I love it so much, why not?!”

Matt Wood, 27, and partner, Dan Spencer, 24, are excited as they wait for the conversion of the former show home at Parkside. The detached three-bedroom home will have plenty of space for the couple, their dog Gizmo, and two kittens.

Matt, a retail insights manager, is originally from Lancashire and moved to Carlisle to study performing arts at the University of Cumbria. After graduating, he moved to Manchester but said: “I didn’t like being in such a busy city.

“Here I can go into town and have a bit of busy, and I’m close to Lancaster, Glasgow and Edinburgh, and the Lakes, but it’s nice and quiet.

“It’s a beautiful area, so friendly, and the house we have bought is across from the park so it’s perfect for walking the dog. My work is based from home but Parkside is close to the local hospital where Dan works as a health care assistant in the ophthalmology department. It’s ideal for us.”

Lovell has released a new three-bedroom show home at New Acres, to convey the lifestyle that’s on offer for those who buy there. A video tour of the show home, with comments from home buyers Matt and Dan, can be viewed here. A two-bedroom show home is also open to view.

Tagged Developments