When Ben Brown was deployed in Europe with the Army Air Corps earlier this year, his partner Tracey Drake realised she wanted to move to Norfolk to be closer to home.
The couple, who had been living together in Ben’s home in Ipswich since December 2021, found their perfect place – a new Bovis Homes property at Vistry Group’s Birch Gate development – in Wymondham and moved in on Friday 25 November.
Ben, a Warrant Officer with 4 Regiment Army Air Corps based in Ipswich, used the housebuilder’s Smooth Move scheme to take all the hassle out of selling his old 1950s home – with Vistry liaising with the estate agency and paying their fee.
The couple were also able to take advantage of the Bovis Homes Armed Forces Discount Scheme – and by buying brand new, there were no repairs or DIYs jobs to worry about when they moved in.
Ben, 42, said: “I wanted to move into a home which was already decorated and done up. I have renovated properties before, and I do not have the time anymore to be doing that.
“The customer service at Birch Gate from the sales consultants and site team was exceptional. We really could not fault them – they were accommodating, responsive, and would consistently send us pictures of the build updates.”
Before Ben and Tracey got the keys to their new five-bedroom detached Birch home, they found out that their neighbours were actually former military colleagues of Ben’s.
He said: “It was great to find out I already knew the neighbours – we had worked together in Afghanistan and Ireland. After selling my old home, Tracey and I rented for two months whilst completions were being made on our new place, and our new neighbours offered to store some of our furniture in their home while we waited to move in.
“We’ve already been to the Christmas market in Wymondham with them. It is great to be part of a friendly community already.”
The couple love the spacious layout of their new home, which suits their lifestyle perfectly.
Tracey, 42, a project manager who had previously owned a new-build home in Mulbarton before moving in with Ben, said: “We were originally looking for a four-bedroom home, and that was all we could afford at other sites. However, at Birch Gate, we could buy a five-bedroom house within our budget.
“This, alongside many other factors which made the Birch stand out the most, made putting an offer in an easy decision.
“The Birch has an office, as well as five bedrooms, which was fantastic because it didn’t mean having to give up a bedroom for an office. I have been able to make one of the bedrooms a dressing room, with three other rooms still available for guests.
“Now that we have moved in, I have fallen in love with the kitchen. I have always wanted a large kitchen with bi-fold doors leading out to the garden and this house has that. It is so spacious, and I am also surprised at how quiet and peaceful the site is.”
Ben said: “We are in love with the Birch. Everything in the house flows so nicely, the layout is great for hosting and there is great storage in every room, too. The master en suite also has a walk-in rainfall shower which makes it feel as though we are living in a luxurious hotel.
“There is no comparison to this house compared to our previous homes. The location is so much nicer and the homes themselves are worlds apart.”
Ben commutes to work near Ipswich each day, while Tracey generally works from home but gets the train from Norwich into London when she has to head into the office, so having easy access to good road and rail links was important to the couple.
They also wanted a home near plenty of green space, with shops and local amenities just a short walk away.
Ben said: “Wymondham town centre has everything you want. It is only a short walk from the site and has plenty of local shops and supermarkets, as well as takeaways and cafes. There is a great pub just down the road, and the Mad Hatters Tea Shop is near to us, too.”
Tracey added: “I am really looking forward to visiting Wymondham Abbey. It looks beautiful and would be a lovely place to go for a winter walk.”
Tracey and Ben bought the Birch for £491,995 which included a military discount of £8,000. They put down a £50,000 deposit on the home.
To find out more about the Bovis Homes properties Vistry is building at Birch Gate, visit www.bovishomes.co.uk
References to “we”, “us” or “our” are to the part of the Vistry Group (including Linden Homes, Bovis Homes, Countryside Homes, Drew Smith, Vistry Ventures or one of Vistry’s joint venture companies) from which you are intending to purchase a new home. References to "you” and “your” are to the prospective buyer or buyers of a new home from us.
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