Emilie Heinonen, who founded the interior design agency People and Spaces, chose Kingsdown, south of Cotham, for its family-friendly vibe – her family walk or cycle everywhere and she also likes the book club, where she says the average age is “around 83”.
“After living in London, Helsinki and Sydney we thought Bristol was the perfect place – a more ‘manageable’ version of London,” says Emilie, 43, whose husband is from Exeter.
“In my business I love the Georgian architecture of this little pocket.”
A little further out of the centre, Henleaze and Westbury-on-Trym remain popular with families for their villagey feel and sense of community, says Robert Nagle. “You can find a three-bedroom semi for around £600,000, a four-bed for £700,000 upwards.”
The agent is selling one for £845,000 in the catchment area for Henleaze Junior School (Ofsted rated Outstanding).
Along with nearby Westbury Park, Bishopston and St Andrews, Henleaze is also attractive for family house rentals, says Charlotte Strang of property finders Strang & Co. “But the yields are not as good as in an area like Easton, where purchase prices are much lower.”
For property investors
Buy to let (BTL) is not dead, according to Charlotte Strang, who sources properties for investments, student landlords and lets to professionals.
“For flats, I would recommend investing in a two-bedroom property with some sort of outdoor space like a balcony. These tend to rent better than one-bedroom flats. They’re also a safe investment for selling on. Many tenants like to use the second bedroom as an office.”
She says Bristol harbour’s Finzels Reach, Horizon (Cabot Circus) and Everard’s Printworks are schemes where initial yields of around 5pc can be achieved for the BTL investor.
In the Harbourside, flats in developments such as such as The General, Anchorage and Hope Quay are particularly sought after. “A two-bed apartment with views of the harbour rents for around £1,700 per month.”
For student lets, Ashley Down area is popular for its proximity to the University of the West of England and Bristol University. A four-bedroom terraced house costs around £600,000, and can be let to students for around £3,300 per month, giving an initial yield of around 6.6pc.
Investment opportunities include the Temple Quarter area, surrounding Bristol Temple Meads Station – an area of around 130 hectares, considered to be one of the UK’s largest urban regeneration projects. Another one to watch is Bristol Zoo – there are plans for 196 new homes under consultation.
New residential neighbourhoods slightly further outside the city include the Brabazon development in Filton, a large regeneration area on the former airfield which will benefit from a new railway station linking Filton with Temple Meads in under 15 minutes.
Prices start from £194,000 for a one-bedroom flat, through Savills.
“Filton is an attractive place for professionals to live, particularly as some of the large employers such as Airbus are based there,” adds Ms Strang. Chinese and Hong Kong buyers especially prize Filton’s easy access via the M4 and M5, and proximity to Bristol airport.