Buying a Victorian House

20.02.2013 07:13:03

Buying a Victorian House Interested in buying a Victorian house? If you want character, charm, high ceilings and bay windows, Victorian homes for sale certainly fit the bill. Available in areas throughout England, this type of property comes with pros and cons. Prices vary considerably according to location. For example Victorian properties for sale in Manchester are considerably more expensive than similar homes to buy in locations such as Ilfracombe in Devon.

Here, we take a look at buying a Victorian house, identify the pros and pitfalls and look at two very different areas which feature this particular type of property: Manchester and Ilfracombe.

Pros of Buying a Victorian House

Built during the reign of Queen Victoria (1837-1901), these properties are built from brick or stone, have slate roofs and are characterised by spacious rooms, high ceilings, adornment, stained glass, sash or bay windows, pine floorboards, cast iron fireplaces and ceiling mouldings. All of which give a home instant character and desirability.

Cons of Buying a Victorian House

Charm and character are all very well and good but they do require maintenance. Buy an older property and you may have to take measures to rectify damp, such as replastering walls with a salt inhibitor or re-blackening the chimney. Buying a Victorian house may also mean inheriting outdated electrics. All of this will of course be covered in the survey you pay for, but be prepared to spend on modernisation and maintenance.

Where to find Victorian Houses for Sale

Whilst you can find this type of home in many locations, there are some towns and cities which boast more than others. Many Manchester properties for sale date back to the Victorian era. Try Victoria Park, Fallowfield and Didsbury for starters. You’ll find three, four, five and six bedroom Victorian houses in and around the Greater Manchester area. Many are purchased by buy-to-let landlords and let out to students.

Some of England’s coastal hotspots are also blessed with a high concentration of Victorian houses. Take the aforementioned Ilfracombe for instance. Ilfracombe properties for sale that date back to the Victorian era can be purchased for around £155,000. However, living by the sea isn’t for everyone. Coastal towns have bags of charm but can be desolate in winter.

Buying a Victorian house can mean spending anything between £150,000 and £1million. It all depends on location.

Victorian houses for sale in Manchester start at around £220,000. For that, you’ll get a three bedroom terraced house in West Didsbury. If you want to live in the desirable Didsbury Village (a big hit with Manchester’s young urbanites) you can expect to pay a premium for the privilege. A well-presented, two bedroom Victorian terrace typically costs around £230,000. If you’re looking for something larger, a four bedroom mid-terrace house in West Didsbury will set you back around £325,000. Moving up a level, you’ve got five bedroom houses for around £385,000.

Now, let’s take a look at Victorian houses for sale in Ilfracombe, Devon. Here, it’s quite a different story and you definitely get more for your money. This is a coastal town that’s a bit shabby but could be one to watch. Damian Hurst has a restaurant here and is rumoured to be building high end eco homes. It’s an area ripe for regeneration and is blessed with stunning sea views, well-regarded restaurants, plenty of pubs by the harbour and a cinema and a theatre. It was one of the areas favoured by holiday makers back in Victorian times, hence the number of Victorian homes in the area.

Here, you can pick up a six bedroom detached house with stables for around £500,000. If that’s out of your price range, there are Grade II listed properties for sale for around £300,000. 

You’ll also find four and five mid-terrace Victorian properties for sale in Ilfracombe just off the high street for around £220,000.

If you really want to push the boat out, buy an old guesthouse or a huge gentleman’s residence for around £700,000!

Check the My Homes Unlimited listings for Victorian houses for sale in Manchester and Ilfracombe.

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