First-time Buyer: A roomy house in a stunning lakeside setting proved perfect for this young family
KIMBERLEY STANTON and Byron Fleming were happy enough renting a one-bed flat in Bayswater, but when they discovered that they were expecting a baby, the couple were spurred into action.
Rather than being squeezed into a cramped home they didn’t own, they took the plunge and decided to buy in Reading, where the average property price is a third of that in parts of west London, and the commute is set to be boosted by the arrival of Crossrail.
The couple — who are both in their 30s — wanted the convenience of a new build and immediately thought of the Green Park Village development, as Byron was familiar with it through his job as a quantity surveyor.
Located south of Reading town centre, this new community is being created by St Edward, part of the Berkeley Group, and features a collection of homes on the banks of a lake and surrounded by green space.
The houses and apartments have a stateside feel, inspired by the architecture of New England, the seaside communities of Cape Cod and the Hamptons on the US east coast, and many enjoy views of the water.
‘The arrival of our baby Finn was an exciting surprise for us,’ says Kim, a marketing manager for a firm based in Berkshire. ‘However, the situation we found ourselves in meant that we needed to find a property as soon as possible and, through Byron’s work, we knew that Green Park Village had everything we needed. We wanted a home where we could be proud to raise a family and have achieved that.
‘We chose a three-bed house which has a fabulous open-plan space for entertaining, and the flexibility needed for modern living.
‘There is such a peaceful feeling here — it is so well maintained and provides that rare balance of nature on your doorstep while being close to the city centre, motorway, bus and rail networks.’
In addition to finding a spacious home in a desirable setting, the couple also required a location that would fit in with their jobs and family commitments. ‘The fantastic thing about Green Park Village is that we really didn’t have to compromise at all,’ explains Byron.
‘The good transport connections mean that I can continue working in London and it’s easy for us to see friends and family.
‘From the quality and specification of the properties to the lakeside setting and architectural style, the development really ticked every box for us. We were impressed with the modernity of the houses and really loved the attention to detail, as if everything had been considered and provided for.’
DO THE MATHS
Purchase price: £483,000
Deposit (ten per cent): £48,300
Service charge: £36pcm
Total monthly spend: £1,795
■ Green Park Village is less than a mile from junction 11 of the M4, and residents have access to a day care nursery, restaurants and a gym at the neighbouring Green Park Business Park. The next phase of homes, Lakeside Gardens, launches on Saturday. It consists of six two-bedroom coach houses plus a range of 31 three and four-bed townhouses. From £400,000, greenparkvillage.co.uk