Property professionals report that rural homes and smallholdings have been highly in demand as a direct result of the global pandemic. But have you ever wondered what £1M could actually buy you?

Many of us have wondered what we’d do if we suddenly came into a large sum of money. And it’s highly likely that a buying a house would be on most people’s to-do list – or investing in multiple properties!

Vicky Young, Customer Service Assistant at the Cumberland said: “It must be an unbelievable feeling to suddenly realise that you never have to worry about money again, other than thinking of ways to spend it!

“We’d all like to be in that position, but a windfall is not the only way of becoming wealthy. Let’s not forget the many people who work extremely hard to build up a pot of money that they can use to fund their retirement or secure the well-being of their families.”

Also pulling out all the stops in hopes of a brighter future are those who make a calculated decision to save as much as they can in order to move up the property ladder.

“Having reached their goal, many of these individuals often consider a lifestyle change to go with their changed circumstances,” said Vicky Young. “In fact, after we came out of the first Covid-19 lockdown, inquiries for country properties, farms and smallholdings shot up in rural areas, a bounce which took many by surprise.”

This increased demand was attributed to the rise in home working, with employees staying in touch with the office via video conferencing; to families with school-age children judging that a village would be a safer and more attractive environment than an urban setting; and to younger buyers wanting more open space.

So if you’re sitting on £1M (or dreaming of it) and wondering what your next home purchase could be, we’ve picked five great properties to give you a few ideas.

If you’re a keen equestrian…

Hale End, Hale, near Beetham

High-end style and rural delights combine at Hale End, a large stone-built house with many original features. And there’s enough room for your family, the grandparents and a few horses too. 

It has superb views over the surrounding countryside and sits in more than seven acres of land with a summerhouse and workshop.

This property is ideal for equestrian purposes, having a seven-stall stable block, large flood-lit menage and new field shelter. Hale End is currently used as a four-bed home but has an interconnected annexe that could easily be made part of the main property to create a five/six-bedroom house.

An impressive entrance hall with hand-crafted elm staircase is complemented by oak flooring while a bespoke kitchen and quality bathrooms add to the prestigious feel. This really is an impressive family home with lots of options for work and play.

More details:

For sale at £1M from Waterhouse

If you want character and charm…

The Oaks, Dalston

Country living is all very well, but sometimes it’s good to be close to amenities.

Sash windows, exposed beams and shutters are just some of the original details still remaining in this Grade II-listed house which is on the outskirts of Dalston village.

The extensive living space provides five reception rooms and six bedrooms and the grounds contain an attractive heated garden room with hot tub.

Vicky Young said: “The Oaks impresses from the outset, being approached through electric gates to a twin driveway.

“Just think how visitors might react to their first sight of this imposing red sandstone property, if you were to run a business from the premises. 

“It would be ideal as a wedding venue or boutique bed and breakfast and the landscaped gardens include a children’s play area and campfire space.”

Formerly on offer at £1m, The Oaks has now been reduced so you can tell yourself you’re getting a bargain.

More details:

For sale at £900,000 with PFK

If you want to run a smallholding…

Woodgate Farm, Lowick Green, Ulverston

If your post-lockdown dreams involve a career change to farming, this kind of property could be worth a look.

A detached farmhouse with paddocks to front and rear, this home is in a popular location with great views and offers an opportunity for someone to run a smallholding on the land.

The current owner is retiring and willing to sell an additional 20 acres of land by separate negotiation. 

There are a lot of rooms in this large farmhouse, many of them with lovely pine doors. Shuttered sash windows and exposed beams add character and although the property has a modern bathroom and kitchen, you’ll probably want to redecorate throughout.

More details: 

For sale at £1m from Corrie and Co

If you want a lifestyle opportunity…

Beckfoot, Highbridge, Dalston

This house has a wealth of noteworthy features but perhaps the most unusual is that you approach it over its own private bridge. 

This sets the tone for this period property which dates from the late 1600s with 18th Century alterations. It has underfloor heating throughout and further improvements have been carried out by the current owners. Contemporary comforts and period charm make a winning combination that’s sure to be of interest to many buyers.

Vicky Young said: “Beckfoot is a fabulous family house which just exudes class from its super living kitchen to the large orangery with exposed timbers.

“But it’s the magnificent master bedroom suite which is the icing on the cake for me. It covers a large area and has a dressing room and beautiful bathroom.

“The property also has a self-contained annexe, Beckfoot Cottage, which currently operates as a highly-rated Airbnb although it was previously used as offices and could easily revert back to that function.”

More details:

This property is now under offer but see other listings from Hayward Tod

If you’re looking for The Cumberland’s property of the week…

Cundells, Garth Row, Underbarrow

As this detached modern house sits in substantial landscaped gardens, is it still apt to describe it as having tremendous kerb appeal?

Let’s not argue about it but say instead that Cundells is an exceptional home that delivers the wow factor in spades.

From its galleried entrance hall, through its huge sitting room and on to the well-equipped breakfasting kitchen, the attention to detail and quality of finish is evident.

It has also been designed to capture unrivalled views from the Lake District fells to Morecambe Bay from almost every window.

Vicky Young said: “Cundells really is something special with contemporary styling and exquisite touches as standard throughout.

“It is also beautifully presented and in turnkey condition. Similarly, it is evident that much thought has gone into the landscaping of the gardens which are a delight.”

Why is this The Cumberland’s property of the week?

Cundells is just a five-minute drive from Kendal and offers a host of possibilities for a new purchaser. Vicky Young added: “The house would make the most fantastic family home but is also perfectly suited for a business. 

“It has five en-suite bedrooms which offer great potential for bed-and-breakfast purposes and there is ample garaging for guests’ vehicles. 

“Cundells is in a great location for accessing all the major attractions of the Lake District and its panoramic views are absolutely outstanding.”

More details:

For sale at £1.25m with Thomson Hayton Winkley.

If any of these homes take your fancy, speak to our local experts or quickly see what you can afford by using our mortgage calculator.

Finding out how much you’re able to borrow will give you a clearer understanding of the price range of homes you can start searching for.

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