So you’re chasing your dream and moving to Devon. And, you’ve seen how super cheap property is in Plymouth and you’ll have a bit of that, thank you very much. But if you’re not that familiar with the Ocean City (as no-one except journalists call it), you need to know where the best areas to live are, right?
Picking a place to live in Plymouth can be tricky as you can be trading off between having inconsiderate student neighbours or sketchy townies hanging about, vs some really nice areas with genuinely nice neighbours. Ok, that’s vague as fuck, so where do you need to pick to get the best out of living in Plymouth?
Straight in at the top is safely middle class Peverell, usually one of the top choices for people moving in Plymouth. The good bits? You’ve got Central Park right in your back yard for walking and jogging, nice big houses with decent sized back gardens and the shops of Peverell High Street and Mutley for all the convenience.
The downsides of Peverell? It is more expensive than other areas in this part of town, it can be a bit studenty (which might mean noise or the ever-present scent of pot smoke, which you may or may not think is a good thing) and on match days you’ll find it impossible to park your car.
Other than that. Lovely.
2. Mount Gould/Lipson
One of the best things about the Mount Gould and Lipson area is that your property is quite likely (not always mind) to have a sea view. This is especially true for properties lining Mount Gould Road itself and along the terraces that line this road.
Houses here are also pretty big, even if they are terraced, and usually have a good sized garden too. If you find property in Mount Gould or Lipson, do take a look. It is one of the nicer areas of Plymouth and pretty safe – meaning not much crime.
The downsides to Mount Gould and Lipson are the hills. It’s hilly AF which means if you’re walking it’s always a trek. There are also no pubs, which might not be a big deal for most as you can just get a taxi to the Barbican or something.
3. Durnford Street/Millbay
Millbay is very much on the up, with lots of new apartments springing up, meaning you might find a great investment here for the future. Nearby Durnford Street is also a popular spot to pick up nice old terraced houses or flats in the area, and you’re very close to the buzzing Royal William Yard and the beach/waterfront at Devils Point.
Downsides to this area of Plymouth are that gardens are pretty rare, so you’ll be living on your balcony or a small yard if you find a house. It is also a development area, so there are still building works going on probably for the next few years too.
Ever since the Guardian ran a piece about Plymouth being one of the best places to grab property in the UK, Stoke has been held up as one of the best areas to live in Plymouth. There is some truth in this, with some lovely big houses for what are still criminally low prices. The area is all very leafy and has that not-quite-gentrified-yet air which is quite refreshing.
There is also the high street at Stoke Village with some decent take aways and restaurants and a short hop into town if you need. Plus the benefits of Devonport Park on your doorstep.
The downsides to Stoke might also be that some bits of it are still a bit sketchy, and the overlap with Devonport can lead to some undesirables lurking around at all hours. Having said that, most people moving to the city from, for example London, will find the area pretty safe and friendly.
Is this the Beverly Hills of Plymouth? It’s a bit of a stretch to be honest, but this is where your expensive properties are found, which means if you view a house here it’ll probably stretch your budget but you’ll love it. Like most other areas in this list, think semi-detached or terraced houses on leafy streets.
The downsides to living in Compton and Mannamead are mostly down to the cost of property. But you might well find a bargain too.
This area is often mistaken for Stoke, but actually sits in the valley between Stoke and the city centre. You’ll find decent terraced properties here, with Victoria Park helping to make the area even more appealing.
There’s not much to say about it, other than it’s quite well placed and can be a bit of a bargain.
Heading out from the city centre now, one of the better suburban areas of Plymouth is definitely Plymstock. Areas such as Hooe, Elburton and Goosewell are temptingly close to the countryside but with the benefits of some of the urban living. Think bus links to the city, shops that are open past 8pm and a choice of pubs.
The benefits to being this far out also means no students, which might be a selling point for some. And you’ve got the beaches of Bovisand and Jennycliffe a short walk from your front door (in theory).
Beyond the city Centre, Southway is as pleasant as suburban Plymouth gets really. It’s on a hill, there are lots of quite large terraced houses, and you’ll get quite a lot for your money, compared to in town. It’s also a short distance (relatively) to the Moors, and you’ll usually get to skip the traffic bottleneck between Derriford and the Roborough junction.
The downsides to Southway are that it’s a bit of a way out of town, and it’s not very exciting.
Areas to avoid in Plymouth
This is a tricky subject, as its entirely subjective of course. But… Assuming you’re moving to Plymouth from the cosmopolitan hubs of Bristol, London or Manchester, you’ll probably want to avoid:
Stonehouse: Up and coming or way past it’s best? There is a very run down/ghetto-esque air, but some parts still offer a decent place to call home. That said, you can find some cheap properties around Union Street.
Devonport/St Budeaux: The face of run-down Plymouth, sitting right next to the Naval Dockyards. Yes, you’ll find a bargain property. And it’s not all rough. Personally, I’d look elsewhere.
North Prospect: Long hailed as the rough end of town, Swilly, as it’s usually referred to, is still pretty rough. Can it be gentrified? Maybe. But I wouldn’t stick around to find out.
So there it is…. The best and some of the worst areas to live in Plymouth. Are we way off? Missed anything amazing? Let us know in the comments.