thank you for the information and links, I have something to read now!
I'd be curious to know what makes Crawley a place not suitable for raising children... ;)
About the example price (200000), it was just well.. an example price to make calculations easier. It does seem that one needs a little more than that to move a family in.
And when I wrote "house" I mean house, flat... bungalow (?).. etc.. :D
Here in Italy when we say house we mean "anything" somebody can live in.. and only after we distinguish between a flat (appartamento), a house (villa), etc... What stroke me in my initial search on the web, beside the prices which are obviously higher than around here, is that bedroom seem so small. I doubt our furniture will fit in there. On the other hand, it's nice to see that when you buy a new house/flat it usually comes with the complete kitchen and appliances.
Finally, I apologize if all this sounds too off topic (something which I warned you about at opening of my thread). I remembered there's a conspicuous set of people joining the forum from UK and I wanted to capitalize on your knowledge :)
Indeed, you should expect a certain amount of culture shock :). Houses for example are generally smaller than in many countries, not least because this is a small Island with a lot of people living on it so land is expensive, especially in London and the surrounding areas (the "home counties" or "the south-east"). We are not talking Japan here, but all the same, do not expect a Californian style ranch-house for 200k ;) ...
Fitted kitchens are always included in the selling price but if there are any free-standing components they may not be; tables and chairs will most certainly go with the seller unless you do a side-deal on those. You are given a list of all things that are included in the sale so it is worth taking time to check exactly what is included.
A good site to get an idea of prices and house types is: http://www.rightmove.co.uk.
Another point for an Italian Ex-pat, is that if you are prepared to commute further distances places like Bedford have a very large Italian community.
When I lived in Bedford I was about 200m away from a small corner shop who had weekly deliveries from Italy, so I got very attached to proper ferrero cakes, fig rolls, and decent olives and parmesan
Downside, its over an hour by train into central London. Also like most British towns, there are nice parts of Bedford, and there really crappy bits.
The advice about renting for 6 months is one of the best, as you'll never know an area well until you live there for a while