Written by Sara D'Souza

What makes a forever home?

The hassle of moving really is stressful, so what if you never had to do it again? It’s an appealing prospect. No more removal vans, no more frantic calls to the estate agent, just growing into your forever home. But what makes a forever home? There’s a lot to consider from location to space to future planning. According to Safestyle, over a third of Brits over the age of 30 are already in theirs, but currently only 32% of first homes make the grade.

Forever home in the countryside

Photo: Adobe

Location, location, location

Hands down the most crucial factor in picking your forever home is the location and one that’s arguably, the hardest thing to choose, as not only are you considering your current needs but ones across your whole life. Will you have a family? Are there good schools nearby? Are there good transport links? Do your family and friends live near enough to see regularly?

It’s important to think about what would happen if you changed jobs and, also about your leisure time. Looking for somewhere that has easy access to nature could be a key factor, especially as Safestyle’s findings have revealed that ‘32% of Brits want their forever home to be in the countryside’ and 43% of Brits need a garden to be part of their forever home.

Garden in the countryside

Photo: Bridgman

Get the size of your forever home right

Size management is another factor in choosing your forever home. Firstly, is there enough space? Growing families need plenty of room, and it’s often easy to fill any space that you move into. Is there scope for an extension in the property? Whether that’s out into the garden or a loft or basement extension. Don’t forget to think about planning permission when thinking about extending.

‘Three bedrooms is the perfect property size for two in five Brits’, while ‘26% want a room for the grandchildren to sleep in’. That’s not the only room to think of adding, 51% of Brits think a family room would be important. Given it’ll be your forever home, you’ll be future planning to your retirement, so it’s important to think about whether the property will be the right size for you to manage in older age and if the stairs might be a problem.

A chic loft extension

Photo: Karndean

How will you use the space?

A lifetime is a long timeline to think about your needs. Post pandemic, people have realised how important gardens are, and having that outdoor space to properly relax and unwind in. The spaces in a forever home must add value to your life, whether it’s a chic home office in the garden (39% of Brits want a home office), that you don’t have to commute to or a showstopper dressing room (42% of Brits want a walk-in closet).

Interestingly, one of the most sought after attributes a forever home should have is a garage, with over 60% of Brits seeing it as their most important feature. Spending more money on excellent quality fixtures, fittings and appliances will also pay off in the long run. Make sure you do your research before buying, whether it’s an incredible oven, high quality white goods and even having excellent paint, which you know you won’t have to keep re-doing.

Chic garage from Urban Front

Photo: Urban Front

Make it your own

A massive benefit of a forever home is what a huge part of your life and story your house becomes. You can think about the décor in a completely different way, as you know you’re only doing it for yourselves, not for any potential future buyers, nor are you thinking about what could add value to your home.

Safestyle believe that ‘personalisation allows us to cherry-pick our favourite features of a home to create somewhere we can see ourselves in forever. It’s the different bits of inspiration you take from places you’ve been and want to replicate for your own property. Windows and doors clearly have a huge impact on how we feel about a property on first impression, which is why the option of having your windows tailor made for your forever home is really important.’

Personalise your forever home and make it your own

Caffe Latte

What are Brits looking for in a forever home?

  1. 60% of Brits see the garage as the most important feature in a forever home
  2. 32% of Brits want their forever home to be in the countryside
  3. 51% want a family room in their forever home
  4. 42% want a walk-in closet
  5. 39% want a home office

What are the UK’s most desirable property types?

  1. Countryside home
  2. Bungalow
  3. Cottage
  4. Period home
  5. Terrace house
  6. Townhouse
  7. Flat/apartment
  8. Seaside

forever home infographic