It was love at first sight when the Boardman family walked into a luxury five-bedroom home built by Vistry Group in Saffron Walden.
The family knew instantly that the three-storey Fordham at Linden Homes’ Saffron View location was their ‘dream’ home.
Stuart Boardman, a 39-year-old partnerships director for a technology company, said: “We walked into the Fordham show home and that was that really. My wife Lauren and I looked at each other and we just knew without saying a word that our search for a new house was over. It sounds corny but it was love at first sight for both of us.
“When we got upstairs, our children Miller and Phoebe were excitedly picking who would have which bedroom and that just reinforced the sense that this was, without any doubt, the house for us. The interior design team had dressed the house and really done a fantastic job because we could see ourselves living there without having to lift a finger.”
The couple were living in a four-bedroom terraced cottage in Stapleford Abbotts, near Epping, and realised they needed more space.
“There were four bedrooms but they were small rooms and to be honest, the whole house felt a bit cramped with all of us in it,” said Stuart. “So, we started to search in earnest and during our internet research came across Linden Homes’ Saffron View development.
“We booked an appointment and went along to have a look and were just blown away. The development was just what we were looking for – it was not too big, it was nice and quiet, the houses were well-spaced out and, unlike our house in Stapleford Abbotts, it was not on a ‘rat run’ for drivers.
“It was also close enough to town for us all to be able to walk in together and there was a selection of good schools in the area. All these boxes were ticked before we stepped into the show home. Once we had seen inside that house, we just wanted to live there.”
Stuart and Lauren, 38, their three children – Miller, seven, Phoebe, four, and one-year-old Hadley – and their three-year-old Cockapoo Margot, moved into their new home in November 2021.
“There is so much room in this place it is amazing,” said Stuart. “Having three floors is brilliant because it just accentuates the feeling of space. Miller and Phoebe have taken over the top floor. There are two large bedrooms up there and they share one of them and use the other as a playroom.
“As a family, our favourite room is the huge kitchen/diner because it is the real focus of the home. At the old house the kitchen was separate but here it is part of a large communal area. Lauren and I can be cooking dinner while the children can be reading or doing their own thing. It’s perfect for all of us to be together but not on top of each other.
“I use the downstairs study as an office where I can close the door and concentrate as I work from home. I need to go into the office in London once a week and that takes me about an hour to get there, which is about the same commute time from the old house. But once I get home here, it’s so much more relaxing than it was at the previous place.”
The couple hope the children will soon make new friends in the neighbourhood.
“There is a real family feel on this development and that is such a bonus for us,” said Stuart. “We have met some of our neighbours and they are lovely. We can see ourselves, and our children, making some really good friends here.
“A big thing for us is to be able to get the family together and set out on a walk if the weather is nice. Sometimes that will take us to the local common where the children can run about and play but sometimes it will take us into town.
“On our travels, we have discovered a glorious ice cream shop and the Eight Bells pub in Saffron Walden. The ice creams are delicious and the pub does a fabulous Sunday lunch. It is wonderful to be able to stroll down there with the children, eat some great food and then just wander back home.”
The couple said they would recommend Linden Homes and Saffron View to family and friends.
“Rob and Sharon on the sales team were excellent all the way down the line,” said Stuart. “Nothing was too much trouble for them and they answered any questions we had about where we were in the process. They were very helpful and patient and kept us fully informed.
“I know I am biased, but this is a beautiful house on a lovely, peaceful development. It is our perfect home and we are very proud of it. We feel so lucky to have found our dream home and are looking forward to bringing up our family here.”
There is currently a choice of four and five-bedroom homes at Saffron View available to reserve.
References to “we”, “us” or “our” are to the part of the Vistry Group (including Linden Homes, Bovis Homes, Countryside Homes, Drew Smith, Vistry Ventures or one of Vistry’s joint venture companies) from which you are intending to purchase a new home. References to "you” and “your” are to the prospective buyer or buyers of a new home from us.
All images are used for illustrative purposes only and are representative only. They may not be the same as the actual home you purchase and the specification may differ. Images may be of a slightly different model of home and may include optional upgrades and extras which involve additional cost. Individual features such as windows, brick, carpets, paint and other material colours may vary and also the specification of fittings may vary. Any furnishings and furniture are not included in any sale. Please check with our sales consultants for details of the exact specifications available at the development(s) for each type of home and the associated prices.