It is the season for buying coastal and waterside homes and coastal Dorset has seen more of a wave than a ripple of buyer activity this year. Here is Poole, Dorset we have already been named one of the country’s key areas outside London affected by the housing bubble (Land Registry prices up 15-20% since 2009)
Much has been written about the beachfront homes of Sandbanks, Poole. However home buyers are less well versed in the hidden charms of the coastal chines of England.
There are only three areas where you will find chines in England: Dorset, Devon and the Isle of Wight. The word chine is only used in the south of England and describes a steep-sided ravine or valley that leads down to the seafront. Not only are chines interesting for their geological history but they make highly desirable locations for holiday home buyers and family home buyers, as many are discovering today.
Dorset’s coastline has a host of chine’s spread between Bournemouth and Canford Cliffs, adjacent to Sandbanks in Poole, Dorset. The chines have created interesting walks along beautiful ravines, which often contain a stream flowing into the sea. They also harbour some wonderful clifftop homes delivering a contrasting combination of wooded landscape and sparkling seascape.
“We recently sold two beautiful homes overlooking Canford Cliffs Chine and Branksome Dene Chine,” explains Pippa Sole, Branch Partner at Berkeleys Poole, “Our buyers appreciated the dual coastal and wooded land/seascape that a chine creates as well as the healthy lifestyle benefits. Looking at average prices achieved for properties located on a chine, a price premium of 10-15% is not uncommon when factoring in a sea view with proximity to a chine,” Pippa explains, “the chines in Poole also command higher prices currently than the chines situated in either Bournemouth or Boscombe.”
These properties also make attractive rental investments. Gemma McGowan, Head of Lettings at Berkeleys notes, “We have recently rented some very attractive apartments on Alum Chine and Branksome Chine, notable for the speed at which they were snapped up. Savvy locals know that a chine based property is likely to be in close proximity to the beachfront or clifftop.”
Every chine is unique offering differing lifestyle benefits. Some chines are more secluded, others more family-friendly whilst one is designated a wildlife conservation area. When buying on a chine, by doing some research first, buyers can uncover truly wonderful properties that will fit their lifestyle today, be they families, second home buyers or young professionals with a passion for water sports.