In January this year, we looked around our teeny, tiny, one bedroom flat in Stoke Newington, where we had lived, on and off, in different forms, for the last 6 years and decided it was time for a change. We needed more space, a little more quiet and wanted to stay in London. That meant one of two things based on our budget – 1) decide to stay in zone 2 and swap a one bed for a slightly bigger two bed for an insane price tag, and in a year’s time cry about how we still needed more space or, simply 2) SUCK IT UP AND LEAVE ZONE 2.
I know, for many people, leaving zone 2 is not an option. What we had in Stokey was what most people dream of: a lovely high street, tons of awesome places to eat all within walking distance, and a half hour commute to work. Bliss. But, we also had: a one bedroom flat creaking at the seams, seemingly noisier neighbours everyday and a wish for our own FRONT DOOR.
Decision made and six months later (after some bumps in the road shall we say), we finally got the keys to our new house – our new four bedroom house – in Forest Gate, zone 3. Oh, Forest Hill she means I hear you say? No, no. Forest Gate is a different place, that you most likely won’t have heard of (most people haven’t).
See, near Stratford? Where that thing called the Olympics happened? Now you know.
We swapped a one bedroom flat, for a four bedroom house, for not much more money and got to keep the half hour commute to work. The one thing we gave up: the lovely high street, with all the food options. But I remain hopeful…
And the big gain: