As his first step onto the property ladder, homeowner Joe Raynes tells us why buying this one-bedroom apartment was a worthy move to make.
In Bishopston, just off the vibrant and bustling Gloucester Road is where you’ll find Elton Mansions. It’s a quiet and serene Victorian building made up of several flats filled with character and original features. “When I was first looking to buy my first home, I was drawn to the high ceilings of this otherwise compact flat,” recalls Joe Raynes, who works as a civil servant. Joe bought the first-floor, one-bedroom flat for himself in June 2019. “Friends recommended me to the area, and I liked that there were plenty of shops, pubs and cafés right around the corner,” he says. “Even though the flat is small, I was really impressed by the light and airy feeling walking into it. The large windows bring in plenty of natural light, particularly in the mornings.”
The home has an open-plan layout, with a kitchen-living-dining area as well as a separate bathroom and one bedroom. “At one stage it was a studio set up, but a previous owner added a wall to separate the bedroom which makes a big difference,” says Joe. “Cleverly, they included inset shelving here to maximise storage space. As a first-time buyer, the space really appealed to me as it was easy to move into and decorate. I had looked at bigger places in terms of square footage, but none of them measured up to what I felt walking in here.”
During his time living at Elton Mansions Joe has refreshed the whole space by painting, revarnished the wooden floors, and updated the sash windows. “Since lockdown, I've put up a few shelves and painted the kitchen. It definitely feels even brighter now,” he adds.
While Joe enjoys the fact he can comfortably walk into the city centre from his home, there are plenty of places to visit on his doorstep too. “The Coconut Tree, a Sri Lankin restaurant offering a delicious range of small plates and tasty curries is a must-visit. Then there’s two Boston Tea Parties nearby, and also Eat a Pitta on Gloucester Road – I’d go there every day if I could!” says Joe. “As for green spaces, thankfully St Andrews Park is just a few minutes’ walk away.”
While Joe is now looking to upsize and move in with his partner, he’ll really miss his first home. “I’d love to find somewhere with a similar, airy feel with the high ceilings and benefit of natural light,” he says. “I’ll miss the location too. While there’s everything on your doorstep, there’s hardly any noise inside the building despite there being other apartments all around. You can really switch off and relax after a long day."
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