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Buy to let in the Cotswolds

PUBLISHED: 15:00 22 September 2009 | UPDATED: 16:15 20 February 2013

Preston - Detached 4 bedroom house set within its own grounds in village location close by Cirencester. Large kitchen/breakfast room with aga and walk in larder, separate conservatory, office, snug, utility and boot rooms. Externally the property has matu

Preston - Detached 4 bedroom house set within its own grounds in village location close by Cirencester. Large kitchen/breakfast room with aga and walk in larder, separate conservatory, office, snug, utility and boot rooms. Externally the property has matu

Leaving behind suburbia for the countryside used to be a retiree's dream. But many younger families are now 'green-shifting' in pursuit of a better quality of life.

Leaving behind suburbia for the countryside used to be a retiree's dream. But many younger families are now 'green-shifting' in pursuit of a better quality of life. A recent survey by the Commission for Rural Communities suggested that 83 percent of urban dwellers would prefer the rural life, and the biggest group of people moving to the countryside are between 30 and 44. Meanwhile property search website Propertyfinder.com suggests the average green-shifter is in their 40s, with a higherthan-average income, has been in the rat race since their 20s and is now looking for a better quality of life.

And renting a rural property, says Paul Oughton, head of lettings at Cotswold letting agent Moore Allen & Innocent, gives families the chance to 'try before they buy'. Paul said: "There are a host of reasons why people want to leave urban areas and move to the countryside. Levels of pollution and crime are much lower and there's often a real sense of community in villages. "For families with children or pets there's bags of open space and properties normally come with much larger gardens than their city equivalents, while the postcode lottery for school places simply doesn't exist - most primary and secondary schools in the Cotswolds are comfortably above the national average.

"Those large gardens give tenants the chance to grow vegetables too - and growyour- own food is returning to fashion, so will impress your city friends, especially if they can take away bags of produce when they come to visit. "Renting a house in the countryside can be like an all year round 'staycation' - all the benefits of two weeks in a country holiday cottage, for 52 weeks of the year." There is, however a flip side. "Urbanites who move to the countryside, especially very rural locations, sometimes fail to appreciate just how much impact the lack of services to which they have become accustomed impacts on their lives.

"They might be half an hour's drive from the nearest 24-hour convenience store or supermarket, and a similar distance from their closest cinema. And unless they've chosen to live in a market town, there's no ambling to the café for a fried breakfast over the papers on a Sunday morning. "Renting a property gives families the chance to try out rural living for six months or more, weigh up the pros and cons and decide whether country living is really for them. Of course, we're confident that most people will choose the country idyll over the urban rat race, but there are families who will just miss city life too much, and decide country living is simply not for them. And better to find this out before sinking all your money into a rose tinted cottage.

Properties typically available range from a one-bedroom cottage in central Cirencester at £495 per calendar month to a pair of sixbedroom country homes at Northleach and Hannington Wick at £2,695 and £2,595 per month respectively.

For advice or information on letting in the countryside, please contact Sam Hall-Digweed or Paul Oughton at Moore Allen & Innocent in Cirencester and Lechlade on tel: 01285 648 118 or email: lettings@mooreallen.co.uk

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