Bishop’s Stortford in Hertfordshire ticked all the boxes for couple searching for their forever home
Having moved around several times in the last few years, Rami, Melissa and their two children (aged three and ten months), found their forever home at Countryside’s St James’ Park development - a new neighbourhood in Bishop’s Stortford, Hertfordshire delivering over 750 new homes, alongside community facilities and green open space.
Moving from Covent Garden, in an apartment above Rami’s parents’ pub to buying a two-bedroom maisonette in Oakwood, Cockfosters, the couple knew it was just a temporary move. After selling their property, they moved into rented accommodation in the Midlands – to be closer to their family during the pandemic – where Rami and Melissa started to create their own list of markers to help find their forever home. However, with two young children and only a six-month contract for their rented accommodation, they didn’t have much time.
Rami says: “We were more determined than ever to find our family home. While it was lovely being close to our family in the Midlands, we were living in a home too small for us and the countdown was on for Melissa to return to work in London, so we didn’t want to wait any longer.
“We weren’t tied to a location – which was a real luxury – so we did our own research and Bishop’s Stortford in Hertfordshire came out as a top location for offering the best quality of life for our family. It has great schools for our two children, and the commute to London is quick and easy. There’s also the perfect mix of green space, independent cafés and shops, and most importantly, you get so much more space compared to London – it felt like the perfect location for us to raise our family.”
Buying a new build came with its benefits
With the idea of owning a low-maintenance property and being the first people to live in the property appealing to Rami and Melissa, the couple narrowed down their search to look only at new builds.
Rami says: “Like every stage of our house hunting journey, I’d done my research into new builds. While of course there were physical benefits including everything being brand new and we could truly make it our own from the moment we moved in, it was the additional things like the 10-year warranty that made our decision so easy.
“We’d looked at a couple of new developments in the area but when we looked around the show homes at St James’ Park, we knew instantly this was the place we could see us living for a long time. The layout of the property worked perfectly for busy family life and having so much living space – inside and out - felt like a dream as we were not used to this in our previous homes.”
While Rami and Melissa fell in love with the specification and layout of the properties, the additional facilities Countryside will be delivering here also impressed them. Rami comments: “It was the offering of the whole neighbourhood that caught our eye – with the onsite school to the playing fields, green open space and community centre, it felt like it was meant to be.”
Designed for modern family life
The family were the first residents to move into St James’ Park in September 2021 and have been embracing the local community and all that Hertfordshire has to offer ever since.
Rami says: “We were both aware that moving to a new town, where we didn’t know anyone was a risk but we’re both sociable people, so we’ve been getting out and about meeting our neighbours and the wider community.
“There are so many clubs around for us and the children to get involved with. We’ve already signed our eldest son up for the local Scouts Club and I’ve joined Bishop’s Stortford Rugby Club. I’ve not only been able to enjoy local yet competitive rugby, but I’ve also already met some great people there. I’m really excited to bring my children along when they get older.”
While the social aspect was important for the family, it was also the lifestyle offering Bishop’s Stortford provided them with that made them realise it was the perfect location to put down roots.
“Since moving in, we’ve visited Bishop’s Stortford’s town quite a few times. We love its monthly farmers markets and range of independent shops, cafes and restaurants. Our favourite place to visit has to be Eat17 – it combines the perfect mix of high-end market stalls all into one place, with an in-store bakery, fishmongers and locally-sourced produce.