Yes, a property price guide to London might seem ambitious, but apart from the fact that it’s the biggest city in the country, and a hotspot of property sales, London is unique in its influence on the property market generally.
Facts first: the average property price in the greater London region is an enormous £666,000. Over the last 12 months, the average price increased by six percent. While the average price of an established property is £664,000, the price of a newly built property is £691,000. There were 61,500 property sales, which represented a drop of 30.6% (-30.4k transactions). At the top end of the scale, the postcode W1K holds the highest prices. The average price is £12.3 million, which is 1852% of the average house price.
Introduction To The Area
London is a collection of neighborhoods and villages stitched together by an impressive transport network of buses and trains, but of course there is enormous diversity between postcodes. For example, Shoreditch is all about the Young British Artists set and young professionals, while Brixton is a multicultural and social hub, Hampstead is full of upmarket cafés and large period houses, while trendy Notting Hill was made famous by the rom-com movie. There is a big difference between east and west, and whether you’re north or south of the River Thames.
But what most affects house prices? Mainly commute times to work in central London, and the quality of local schools for your children. Bear in mind that schools operate by catchment areas, which means families living in the immediate vicinity of the school will get first dibs on places, meaning prices for those houses are likely to be higher.
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What About A New Build?
Walk down any street near a tube or train station in greater London and you’ll find a cluster of new-build houses. In many cases these have taken the place of derelict properties, such as football stadia (e.g. Highbury), disused factories, and churches. They vary enormously in value as the variety in size and facilities is so great among them, but the true cost of a new build can come at a premium – particularly in London where demand for property almost always outstrips supply.
But, just like when you drive a new car off the forecourt and the premium evaporates, premiums on new-build homes can disappear as soon as you move in. In this case, make sure you research prices on comparable new developments using property websites.
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One of the biggest concerns about buying in London is often the asking price. Unsurprisingly, prices for buying and renting homes vary considerably between areas. Clapham in south-west London is a popular choice for young professionals and families. If you’re looking to buy, the current average value in Clapham is £871,000, while the average rent is just over £2,000 per calendar month.
If you’re looking for something a bit more lively, you might want to head for Shoreditch in the East End, where homebuyers face average costs of £742,000 and renters pay an average £2,400 a month. For something more suburban, there’s the leafy village of Dulwich, south London, where the average value is just over £753,000, and the average asking rent is £1,900.
If, like for most people, these parts of London lie outside your financial grasp, the good news is that some outlying neighbourhoods are cheaper. Try Finsbury Park in the north, Walthamstow in the east, New Cross in the south-east, or Streatham in the south-west, for example. For even tighter budgets, you’ll have to venture further out still from the centre to outer London neighbourhoods, such as Enfield in the north, or Kingston in the south-west.
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Estate Agents' Comments
Foxton’s, London’s largest estate agent, say that “the coronavirus pandemic and its associated lockdowns made millions of Londoners crave access to green space. While some made the decision to up sticks and leave the Capital, others found solace in London’s many parks, forests and uplifting garden squares. In 2019 London became the world’s first National Park City, which is not especially surprising given the capital has around 3,000 parks of varying sizes, resulting in almost one-fifth of the entire city (18%) being regarded as a public open space. The jewels in London’s green crown are its eight Royal Parks, which in size order are Richmond Park, Bushy Park, Regent’s Park, Hyde Park, Kensington Gardens, Greenwich Park, Green Park and St James’s Park.”
These inner-city havens are some of London’s most popular attractions for both tourists and residents alike, so it makes sense that they are surrounded by an abundance of fantastic properties, from flats to maisonettes, townhouses to expansive family homes. These are houses that you will pay a premium for, due to their unbeatable locations.
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