the ‘Birds Estate’.. whats the appeal?
The Bird’s Estate is a popular housing development that was created in a small sector of Rayleigh approx 18-20 years ago. Over the years it has become increasing popular for commuters that are looking for a good sized family home within a short walk to the station , which has the added bonus of links directly into London .
Having done some research myself – suggestions for the development of the estate and the naming of the roads can be seen on documents from Rochford District Council dating back to 1995. Although I can not find any evidence of the original build date of the Birds Estate , residents suggest that it was 1999. It appears to be built in several phases starting from the front which was that of Kestral Grove.
The position of the estate seems a smart move and ideal location to build. Yes , it is right on top of the railway ( Some of the properties even back onto it , but within 5 minutes you are on the platform . Another 5 minutes and you are in the heart of Rayleigh high street. Between the two however , there is additional facilities , including a small parade of shops located on London Road and a family pub opposite this , making it a perfect location for residents without vehicles.
For those with vehicles, the estate has one way in and one way out. You have the option of turning right into Hatfield Road which will take you down to London Road. Should you be looking at leaving Rayleigh , you can travel down Bardfield Way and follow the road around, which will still take you onto London road but avoid the traffic in the middle on busier days.
Thankfully , the parking restrictions between 10-11am on one side and 2-3pm on the others means that the streets around the estate are are free of parked cars , which maintains an idealistic housing estate image as well as easy access around the estate itself.
There is also a pathway leading from the entrance of Heron Gardens that takes you onto open fields and woodland , making this an easy access route for dog walking residents. Much amounting to the many plus points of the areas for families ( dogs and cats included!)
That is just the location . The properties themselves however, can be slightly on the smaller side compared to other local properties. A typical 2 bedroom house on the Birds Estate can compromise as a number of set ups , mainly hosting one reception room , some with a downstairs toilet, but most without. The 3 bedroom houses typically have 2 reception rooms, which many have chosen to open upto into one larger space, as well as a downstairs WC. Over the years many people seem to have added conservatories on to give some much needed space into their living areas.
The bedroom’s may not be the biggest ( unless extended ) , however the truth is , How much time do you really spend in your bedroom ? Are you looking for somewhere with a bedroom big enough to do yoga or Cartwheels at the end of the bed ? If not , then its looking good. If a bedroom for you is used, just as a bedroom and a comfortable place to sleep in the evening, then they are perfect!
Sizes for the gardens , can fluctuate massively. Naturally people gravitate towards to the south facing gardens of the estate , however the gardens/plot sizes range depending on where on the estate the house is situated. Although none of the gardens , I would deem to be small ‘small ‘ – however , this is just my opinion ! In my eyes , a small garden would be 10ft ! I once sold a bungalow on the Chase in Rayleigh that had a garden of this size ! Honestly ! So if small gardens are for you, the Birds Estate isnt .
Having met endless families on the estate , there is still a large number of them that have purchased their property from new and are now planning to downsize/ relocate for which ever reasons . My feeling is that people have seen the ‘premium’ exampled by estate over recent years and understand that its the perfect time for such a move, whilst maximising the income from their properties.
How popular the estate is, is very hard to describe ! We have sold a 2 bedroom Semi detached house which needed a touch of TLC for £292,500! At the time that it sold, this was quite high for a 2 bedroom. We have sold a 3 bedroom semi detached house for £340,000! – This property was originally up for £335,000 and ended up going over the asking price on the first open day. Fast forward to two years later and people are still trying to sell 3 bed semi detached houses for the same value.
I encountered a very smart vendor who lived in Kestrel Grove , the property was a 3 bedroom semi detached house , up to an outstanding standard , conservatory, garage conversion , the works ! We discussed the expected price to be between £390,000 and £410,000 . However, the vendor wanted to try at £390,000 and what happened next , I have never before witnessed in my career. The phone couldnt be answered quick enough , I was working on my own at the time and struggling to keep up with calls . In the end , we agreed an open day for a saturday . Viewings started at 9am and were booked for every half an hour, with the last viewing just after 6pm . This alone , shows the volume of interest in the area !
Due to the nature of how things went , and to make it fair to all parties, we decided to create a ‘sealed bid system’ whereby , all applicants interested in the property would be able to put their best offer forward with a deadline in place , then all of these offers would be put forward to make a decision . After putting them all forward , we discovered that the highest offer was just over £25,000 over the asking price !! Yes , £25,000 !
That itself, shows how people are willing to go above and beyond for the location !
So far , so positive .
My only negative insight is that the estate is quite populated. There is a lot of properties in a small area , and whilst the developer has clearly tried to be careful in the layout – most of which has worked well on the estate . On some of the properties you can feel ‘on top of each other ‘ with privacy compromised in a select few of the gardens. However , this is only a small handful within the estate.
Overall, prices seem to be high , with 2 beds selling currently for around £300,000 . Three beds are selling for around £340,000 -£425,000 depending on if they are detached or semi detached and the 4 + bed properties are selling for anything in the region of £375,000 and £475,000 ! So if you have a half a million pound budget you could get one of the biggest , best standard properties on the estate. Take the money elsewhere in Rayleigh, and you could be slightly more restricted on what you can get . The Birds Estate defiantly has a premium in Rayleigh ! But the big question is , is it because of the location ? Is it the style of the properties ? The truth is , I dont think there is a definitive answer. What I can say is that it is remarkably popular and in my professional opinion , I cant see this changing anytime soon !