Fancy a terraced house - for £425,000?

By David LennardTHIS terraced house shows just what first-time buyers, eager to get their feet on the property ladder and in search of affordable housing, are up against.

By David Lennard

THIS terraced house shows just what first-time buyers, eager to get their feet on the property ladder and in search of affordable housing, are up against.

The three-bedroom house in Southwold has just gone on the market with a price tag of £425,000 – more than 20 times the average £20,000-a-year wage for the area.

Southwold is one of this country's most sought-after locations in which to live and the cost of property in the picturesque town reflects this – but people born and bred in the area realise they will have to move away to find a home they can afford.

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The house in Victoria Street is being marketed by Flick and Son, and Richard Brown, fromn the estate agents' Southwold office, said the "unique appeal" of the town was an important factor in attracting people who wanted to purchase homes in the area.

"We have people on our waiting list who want to buy a home in Southwold and are prepared to wait for a suitable property to become available rather than purchase elsewhere in the area," he added.

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"There is such a strong demand for homes in the town and the prices of property reflects this. A three-bedroomed property overlooking Southwold Common is on the market for £850,000 and that is also creating an awful amount of interest from potential purchasers."

Southwold has one of the highest percentages of second-home owners in East Anglia and it is possible that the terraced house in Victoria Street – which is in one of the most sought-after areas of the town – could be bought as a holiday home rather than a main residence.

Waveney District Council is aware of the problems facing first-time buyers in the area and its housing strategy encourages more affordable homes to be built.

Steven Chilvers, the council's portfolio holder for housing and social inclusion, said: "This is not only a problem in Southwold. The cost of terraced homes all over Waveney, including Lowestoft, has become out of reach for many people.

"That is why our housing strategy promotes more affordable homes all over Waveney and we are working with developers and housing associations to achieve this."

Mr Chilvers added it was vital for the area's economy to have homes that young people could afford to live in and the council wanted to see a range of such homes available for purchase, rent and shared equity.

n Southwold restaurant Sutherland House has been put on the market for £1.1million after owners Stephan and Linda Cornell decided to go their separate ways.

Mr Cornell said: "We've had some interest, but nothing has been confirmed as yet. Linda is going to pursue her own interests in the hospitality industry and I will probably look into returning to the travel industry."

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