Old rectories and manor houses ‘give English village homebuyers better value’

House-hunters looking to snap up their dream home in the English countryside may get more space for their money by buying an old rectory, research suggests.

Estate agent Jackson-Stops analysed six typical English village property types, and found that at £245 per square foot on average, an old rectory can potentially offer the best value for money in terms of space.

Manor houses offer the next best value in terms of space, at £246 per square foot on average, although due to the large size of these properties they command the highest average sale price of the property types looked at, at £1,431,944 on average.

Jackson-Stops analysed sales of homes from its country branches between February 2018 and February 2019, as well as Office for National Statistics (ONS) house price data, to make its findings.

At the other end of the spectrum, barn conversions were found to be the most expensive per square foot, at £316 on average.

A typical barn conversion costs £939,070, the research found.

While they may not be as spacious as some other property types, the traditional “chocolate box” cottage was found to be the least expensive in terms of the whole property, with an average price of £606,886.

The research also looked at what time of year countryside properties are most likely to be sold.

The most popular quarter for an English village home to sell is in the third quarter of the year, with manor houses, barn conversions, farmhouses, and chocolate box cottages all selling particularly well during August, when the countryside is in full bloom, the study found.

Mill conversions, however, prove most popular with buyers during the first half of the first quarter – with January being a particularly popular time for this property type to be snapped up.

Nick Leeming, chairman of Jackson-Stops, said: “While the country market may not be as buoyant as it was a few years ago, beautiful homes in bucolic countryside which are accurately priced will always achieve strong interest and will continue to command significant price premiums.”

He continued: “Despite ranking as the first and third most expensive property type respectively, it was interesting to see manor houses and old rectories offering the best value for money per square foot.

“The vicar was often considered the most important individual in the village, only second to the lord or lady of the manor, and so the homes do tend to offer ample proportions.”

Here are the average sale prices of countryside property types on a per square foot basis, followed by the average sale price for the whole property, according to data from Jackson-Stops:

– Barn conversion, £316.93, £939,070
– Chocolate box cottage, £305.74, £606,886
– Mill conversion, £276.64, £959,929
– Farmhouse, £264.28, £1,144,348
– Manor house, £246.25, £1,431,944
– Old rectory, £245.81, £1,075,889