Essex

Essex is a county in the East of England and is one of the most populous counties in the country. It has a population of 1.4 million people, making it an attractive place for prospective home buyers to invest their money and enjoy all that Essex has to offer. Below we’ll take a look at what you should know about Essex before deciding where to put down roots!

4.58
Average Location Score

Excellent

67%

Very Good

27%

Average

4%

Disappointing

2%

Very Poor

0%

Best places to live in Essex

HomeViews Top Rated Development ranking takes into account the Star Rating and HomeViews Transparency Rating of every development in the area

Audly End in Essex

Where is Essex?

The county of Essex is located to the East of London. It borders Suffolk and Cambridgeshire in the South West, Hertfordshire in the North West and Kent along its Northern border.

Areas in Essex

The county contains many different types of areas – some are large towns while others are smaller villages or rural communities that offer peace and quiet away from city life.

Some popular places include:

Chelmsford –  The county’s largest town and its administrative centre, Chelmsford is a vibrant and growing community with excellent schools, shopping and leisure facilities.

Basildon – Located in the East of Essex, Basildon is one of the county’s fastest-growing towns thanks to its convenient location and modern amenities. With transport links to London and the coastal resorts, Basildon is a great place for commuters to live.

Southend-on-Sea – With its beautiful seafront location on the Thames Estuary, Southend is popular with Londoners looking to move out of city life but still want quick access via train or road.

Southend on Sea in Essex

Colchester – Situated in the North of Essex, Colchester is a historic town with plenty to see and do. With two universities and an abundance of shops, bars and restaurants, it’s no wonder Colchester is one of the county’s most popular places to live.

Clacton-on-Sea – A seaside resort on the coast, Clacton is a popular choice for holidaymakers and those looking to retire because of the proximity to the coast and countryside.

Universities in Essex

Essex is home to a few universities which draw students from all over the country – these include:

The University of Essex – With over 13,000 students and nearly 600 international ones, the University of Essex is a popular choice for those looking to study in an informal environment and specialises in social sciences.

The University of Essex is located on the outskirts of Colchester which has a vibrant social scene with plenty to do for students.

Writtle University College – Located in Chelmsford, Writtle is the only agricultural university in Essex and offers courses such as land management, forestry and agriculture.

The Colchester Institute – a popular choice for students looking to study in the creative industry, the Colchester Institute offers courses in fashion, design, marketing and more.

Clacton-on-Sea in Essex

Top Schools in Essex

There are many good schools in Essex catering for children of all ages. In addition to state schools, there are also many prestigious private schools located throughout the county.

Some of the standout institutions include:

King Edward VI Grammar School for Boys – a top independent school that is part of a network of more than 30 King Edwards throughout the country, this grammar school has been established since 1551

The Thurstable School – recognised by The Good Schools Guide as one of the best state schools in England, this selective boys’ school is less than 8 miles south of Colchester.

Colchester County High School for Girls – Another top state school, this selective girls’ grammar boasts high academic standards and impressive examination results.

Population of Essex

The population of Essex was estimated at just under two million people as of 2016. This number is expected to grow steadily over the next few years making now a great time for prospective homeowners to consider buying property in the area.

Reviews in Essex

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Do not buy from countryside homes

Verified Resident
Verified Resident
Review Date Jul 2024

It’s a long walk into town. Bus service is ok especially if you want to go to Stansted airport for £2. Local pub the king William is very clicky and the landlady is not very welcoming

Please review your development:

It’s a nice development and very quiet at times. The major downside would be the day your house is 2 years old countryside homes completely wash their hands of you. And the NHBC certificate they give you isn’t worth the paper it’s written on. Also the constant flow of Essex police cars going to the housing association flats to sort out the drug problems can be a bit frustrating

Please share one thing (or more) which you wish you had known before you moved in:

The fact countryside do not care about you. The rip off maintenance company. The NHBC certificate isn’t worth the paper it’s written on. The constant flow of police officers going to the housing association flats. The fencing that’s falling over in our back garden. The park that we have been paying for has never been finished. The paths are all cracking up. The lack of lighting on the walkways. The litter is never picked up. The place looks like a jungle because the grass is never cut. Lack of trees that should have been planted

What is the best feature of your home:

The front door. We can’t wait to get out of it. The fact that our roof tiles have fallen off after 2 years is not a good sign. We can’t wait to move. Do not buy a new build home. They are paper thin and not built very well. Always problems with something. If it’s not the boiler it’s something else with the hot water system or the heating

1
Facilities
4
Design
2
Location
2
Value
1
Management
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Modern apartment in a peaceful area and community

Review Date Jul 2024

Great access to local shops, bars, open spaces and public transport. Area’s very quiet and well maintained. The post room is a godsend. The communal office space, tenants lounge and private dining room are great amenities to have although the booking process for the dining room could be easier.

Please review your development:

The development itself is fantastic and we’re happy with the overall design. The balcony door could use a stopper or position lock (where you lock the handle to fix the door’s position) as, when it’s windy, the door can be easily blown into the railings. The bedroom could also use a window that can be opened separate to the balcony door. All small things though.

From what we’ve experienced so far, the building and property management has been brilliant. I do wish the onboarding had been a bit more thorough so that we were clearer on how to raise maintenance issues (I’d normally expect a form within the portal) and what information we could find where – maybe the welcome pack could be a bit more detailed?

Please share one thing (or more) which you wish you had known before you moved in:

I wish we’d known that we could find most of the info we’d need after moving in on the resident’s portal. I also wish we’d known that visitors parking is limited and that you need to pay for the permits for these.

How has the building management responded to any problems or issues you have raised:

Very communicative – even when there isn’t a resolution yet we feel kept in the loop.

4
Facilities
4
Design
5
Location
5
Value
4
Management
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Nice apartment, shame about the parking

Verified Resident
Verified Resident
Review Date Jul 2024

Very easy access to town, and the shops and bars etc, as well as parks and local river walks.
Parking, other than paid for permits for residents, is terrible, with very aggressive parking company ticketing.
On-going nearby developments, including new bridge and a new junction on Springfield Road, have impacted walking into town as well as driving.
The lack of permit parking within the same block as your apartment is disappointing

Please review your development:

Very modern and stylish apartments, with good quality fittings, although the sounds proofing isn’t as good as I hoped
Building management team are very friendly and responsive.
The electric smart meter reading is always different to what British Gas state, and different opening reading to what was in the welcome pack, which is frustrating to say the least

Please share one thing (or more) which you wish you had known before you moved in:

That my car parking space wasn’t in my block, especially annoying given my front door is next to the car park door.

How has the building management responded to any problems or issues you have raised:

Yes, I’ve always received a response from the team, although some of the maintenance issues weren’t actually resolve during my stay.

5
Facilities
4
Design
4
Location
3
Value
4
Management
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Ok place to live

Review Date Jun 2024

Location good although little further than a 5 min walk to the train station. Parking is limited so this could be improved

Please review your development:

Buildings are ok, what you would expect with a new build development. Could do with some updating in some areas. Staff are around to help if needed so this is a nice feature. Bin rooms do overflow as people don’t use them correctly but I have seen the cleaner tidy this up.

Please share one thing (or more) which you wish you had known before you moved in:

Parking is the main issue which I feel a lot of people agree with.

How has the building management responded to any problems or issues you have raised:

I haven’t really needed to contact them however the office is open a lot.

3
Facilities
3
Design
4
Location
3
Value
4
Management
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