Country houses for sale

Six Nations City Hotspots

Savills prime market price index during 2013: +11.4%, England 6 Nations title wins: 36

England and Wales have both won the title 26 times outright, but Wales have also shared it a dozen times to England’s 10. England’s home ground is Twickenham, a 20minute rail journey from London Waterloo. The good news for rugger fans is that, as Nigel Field of Winkworth explains, that area is a good place to buy at present. ‘Areas with potential for growth are increasingly popular and the triangle between Waterloo, Elephant and Castle and Kennington is predicted to grow significantly in the next few years. As this area has good transport links and is close to the South Bank, it would be great for a piedàterre.’

Savills index: +9.6%, Ireland titles: 20

‘In general, period or new build family homes in the three-to-five bedroom semi-detached category would be available for this price,’ says Graham Murray of Savills.

‘However, in more desirable locations, such as Dublin 2, 4 (where the Aviva rugby stadium is) and 6, properties in this price bracket will offer less space for your money. In these particular areas, period homes requiring upgrading and three-to-five-bedroom terraced, semidetached and detached houses are proving to be the most popular.

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For best long-term value, properties in the Dublin 2, 4 and 6 locations, areas such as Sandymount, Ballsbridge, Donnybrook, Ranelagh and Rathgar, are a good bet.’

Savills index: +1.3%, Scotland titles: 24

Blair Stewart of Strutt & Parker says: ‘The Georgian New Town is one of the most expensive parts of Edinburgh and £1 million could get you a wellpresented ground or basement flat in one of the more soughtafter streets or a town house in need of renovation, such as the one on Walker Street that we have on our books for offers over £925,000. In other residential areas, such as Barnton, Colinton and Trinity, all of which are popular with families, a buyer could snap up a house with four or five bedrooms for about that figure.’

Savills index: +0.2%, Wales titles: 38

‘Cardiff is on the doorstep of the countryside and the sea and £1 million here will get you an excellent family home. The principle suburbs to look on at this level are Cyncoed, Lisvane and Llandaff,’ believes Peter Reilly of Savills. ‘But the best houses in the best roads rarely change hands.’ However, don’t get downhearted: ‘There are several areas that are made up of Victorian properties where you can choose a detached house with a bay window, high ceilings, ornate cornice work and fireplaces,’ enthuses Gareth Jones of Chewton Rose.

Savills index: -2.3%, France titles: 25

‘With that budget,’ advises Mark Harvey of Knight Frank, ‘you could get a two-bedroom, 80sqm [860sq ft] apartment within the inner crown of Paris in a historic building that encapsulates that city’s rich architectural heritage.

These buildings enjoy elegant proportions and are most sought after within the international community. I would seek out something above the first floor, with south or southwest orientation. The Marais in the 3rd still offers value compared with other central arrondissements and has oodles of character. If in doubt, stick with the 7th and 6th, where you can still find a decent pied à terre for £1 million.’

Savills index: n/a, Italy titles: 0

The 5 Nations became the 6 Nations in 2000 when Italy joined but, although they have won some games, the title still eludes them. ‘Often, buyers begin their search in the historic centre, because they know this location from coming here as tourists,’ observes Knight Frank‘s Rupert Fawcett. ‘Within this budget, you’ll find a 2-3 bedroom apartment, restored, but with no outside space. A terrace or balcony will generally add significant value to an apartment.’

He continues: ‘Looking a little further afield in the Trieste or Parioli areas, you may find more for your money. The Aventino area is also popular, but often for larger villas. Best long-term value is in the centre or surrounding areas, as these will always remain popular.’

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