The trend of London home owners relocating to the Home Counties is set to continue as prices in the centre of the city in particular keep increasing, it is claimed.
Prices in the central London property market increased in July by 0.5% and are now setting record prices. As a result prices in the surrounding counties could also start rising as people who are out priced in London compete for properties in the Home Counties.
‘There is no doubt that London has to be one of the top investment destinations for anyone looking for a safe haven asset right now, particularly after the worldwide focus received during the Olympics. The success of the 2012 games will have an after effect as its prominence lingers in the air for some time to come, and its place to be appeal will attract investors from all over,’ said Brendan Cox, managing director of Waterfords estate agents.
‘This inevitable further increase in demand from investors, coupled with rising prices, means that there is no better time for London home owners to capitalise on their existing property and make a move to an area that provides better value for money, such as the Home Counties,’ he explained.
Waterfords estate agents reported only earlier this year that their branch network had seen a noted upsurge in the first half of 2012 in buyers from London moving into the locations that they operated in, particularly in Chobham, Surrey, and Cox believes that this trend will continue to head in an upward direction.
‘The Home Counties are perfect for these types of buyers as you can get more for your money and many locations are along the commuter belt so for anyone that works in London access is easy with only a 30 to 40 minute journey by train. On top of this, the general cost of living is cheaper and council tax is a lot less which is an appealing factor for many people. There are of course the added benefits of living in the countryside and excellent local schooling,’ added Cox.
The most recent report from property consultants CBRE predicts that prime central London residential house prices will grow by 6% this year in stark contrast to the rest of the UK.
Average house prices in prime central London have increased by 35% over the last three years and are now 16% above their 2007 peak.
London’s time zone, infrastructure, education system and the language make it the top choice location for international buyers, according to Mark Collins, head of residential at CBRE.