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Last Updated: 9 June 2018

If you think all new homes lack character and individuality and you would never buy anything but a period house read this case study of a family who changed their minds about new homes. Then take a look at the pictures of some gorgeous new homes and you might change your mind too. None of them are run-of-the mill new boxes – all have distinctive features that make them stand out from the crowd.

Would You Swap a Period Home for a New Home?


I was fortunate enough recently to visit a friend’s brand spanking new home and it really changed my opinion of new homes. The friend is Scandinavian and had recently moved from a gorgeous Edwardian house that she had spent 8 years getting to a state of perfect Scandi-chic with the help of a local interior designer. Unlike many “interior-designed” homes this one was full of personality with artworks from the owner’s home country and some unique Scandinavian antiques as well as contemporary design classics such as Philippe Starck’s Ghost chairs in the dining room.

It was such a beautiful house that when planning their next move, to be closer to the school they had chosen for their children, they were convinced they would buy another period home; and that looked very likely when they spotted another period house in the right area for schools, with plenty of characterful features and on a large plot. It had been neglected for many years and had very dated interiors but had huge potential and was ripe for refurbishment. Understandably my friend was very excited about the prospect of creating another gorgeous period home in her understated Scandi-chic style.


The pressures of moving with a young family


The next time I saw her I was sure she would have been progressing with the purchase of the period gem but, in fact, she told me they had already exchanged on a brand new house so, as you can imagine, I was very surprised. But in the end the thought of moving to a new area with young children soon to be starting school plus a large house and garden to renovate just seemed like too much hard work.

They had seen the new house – the last available on a very small select development that they had noticed near their children’s school – some months earlier but it had soon gone under offer. When it became re-available they decided to snap it up and simply enjoy their free time with their young family instead of spending every spare moment planning and over-seeing building work .


The attractions of a new home


Once I saw my friend’s new home for the first time I understood exactly why they had decided to forego the attractions of a period home. It was beautifully designed and planned for modern family living with huge windows that let in plenty of light. That might sound like a cliché but if you have lived in a period home they almost never work well for open-plan family living without a huge amount of (very expensive) remodelling and they will never quite be as warm as a new, well-insulated house, or as bright, or as well kitted out for modern technology.

This home was very spacious and, to my surprise, had high ceilings and an impressive entrance hall and staircase. Every room was a good size with beautifully fitted bathrooms and a German kitchen to die for. Huge white porcelain tiles spanned most of the ground floor with double doors leading to all the main rooms meaning there was a wonderful feeling of space and glimpses of the back garden from the main entrance. Even better it had some enviable hi-tech gadgetry such as speakers installed in the ceiling of the kitchen.

Perhaps no home, new or old, is without compromise and perhaps the only compromise with this particular new home was the size of the garden. It wasn’t exactly small but relative to the size of the house – 5-bedrooms, 4-bathrooms and a generous 6,000 square feet– it felt slightly cramped but the developer had retained areas of pine trees between and behind the 3 houses on the development so whilst the garden was on the small side it felt well-established and did not feel overlooked. And, as a bonus, the main area of pine trees belonged to my friend’s home and had a covenant on it so it could never be built on.


Not all new homes are equal


Take a look at these gorgeous new homes if you need convincing:


Oakbridge Homes


A bespoke residential developer of individual quality homes in premium locations, qualified under the Chartered Building Company Scheme, which commits the company to a comprehensive code of professional conduct.


Oakbridge Homes Traditional Design


Oakbridge Homes Hall



Oakbridge Homes Bathroom




Chase New Homes

A progressive, independent company that has been successfully developing new homes since 2005, building a reputation for excellence.


Chase New Home



Chase New Homes Tiled Hallway

New Homes Ensuite Bathroom

Howarth Homes


Custom build of prestigious properties for individual clients using the latest cutting edge technology and design techniques to create bespoke dream homes characterised with unique style in London and the Home Counties.

Howarth Homes Bespoke Designs



Howarth Homes Kitchen


Cairnpark Properties


Developing thoughtfully designed homes on sites which enrich the owner occupier experience and provide an excellent property investment.


Cairnpark Kitchen in New Home



Cairnpark Properties