1st October 2018
Since then the couple have added to their family with daughter Phoebe, almost two, who is a welcome addition to five-year-old son Charlie – and now their home suits them better than ever!
“Having our own space on the top floor was key and it has been lovely for me and Steven. Plus it means I can come up and watch EastEnders in peace if I want to – or I can send him up to watch the football!” says Rachel.
“One of the main reasons we chose the three-storey home was for the bedroom space. We couldn’t have afforded a four-bedroom home across two floors because they were more expensive, but we got all the room we wanted by going up a level.
“Each child can have a bedroom of their own, which is what we always wanted, and we have got a much-needed study for when Steven and I – both high school teachers – need to get on with work, whether it’s marking books or preparation. It’s perfect.”
Rachel, 38, and Steven, 42, had previously lived in a flat but wanted a real family home in West Yorkshire in which to bring up their children.
When they first bought the home, the couple loved the idea of the top floor master bedroom with its own bathroom so much that they didn’t even look at other similar properties. And it’s turned out to be everything they wanted – and more.
Rachel explains: “We love having our own space, which we didn’t have when we were in a flat. It’s not that the children don’t come up here, it isn’t out of bounds; but it’s great, for instance, when I’m getting ready in the morning – as is having our own bathroom which isn’t filled with the children’s toys!”
“A few people have asked how we feel about sleeping on a separate floor but the acoustics are so good that if you leave the doors open you can hear everything perfectly. I don’t think we anticipated the challenge of so many child safety gates with the extra set of stairs, but that’s a short-lived issue and one which wouldn’t have changed our minds that this was the house for us.”
The Kenilworth property they live in has a spacious open-plan kitchen and dining area, which two years on Rachel says is still her favourite room in the house, and a good-sized lounge. And while a two-storey detached home might have afforded more space downstairs, it was the second and third floor space of the Kenilworth that impressed the pair and continues to do so.
“We have used what we originally intended to be the study for Charlie’s bedroom and kept one of the bigger bedrooms for our study because we have a lot of books and, while there’s a desk in there, there’s still plenty of room for the kids to use it as a play room too. It enables us to compartmentalise and organise our lives, and it will do that even as Charlie and Phoebe grow,” Rachel continues.
“It’s so cleverly designed that we have found it easy to manage and look after. It’s fun, we love it and we are looking forward to enjoying it even more as the children get older.”
The family is 100% certain they’ll stay at The Green, although Rachel and Steven sometimes joke that as they get older they might have to move down a floor.
“We have lovely views from the front and back and the development itself is better than we’d expected,” Rachel says. “It’s got a local shop just two minutes away and a children’s play area. We have got a teacher like us on one side, a family like ours on the other, and Charlie’s got about five or six classmates on The Green which means he’s got friends to play with and it’s nice for us to have a bit of support in terms of other parents.
“Steven’s mum is coming to live in Horsforth and has looked at a Redrow home and my brother is thinking of buying one as an investment – everyone is always so impressed!”
For those wishing to embrace the space of going up instead of out to get more for their money, the three-storey options include Kenilworth and York house types.