Buying your first house is incredibly exciting as you finally find a place to call home with the choice of decorating it any way you choose. However, despite the initial rush of house-hunting, it can also be extremely daunting. There are so many options to choose from within a range of different areas throughout the UK. But despite what you may think, one area you shouldn’t immediately dismiss is London.
Brexit has helped slow-down the London property market in recent years, but it’s still a place worth investing in. England’s capital is constantly thriving as it’s one of the most popular destinations throughout the whole of the UK for both tourists and homeowners. Don’t dismiss it’s potential as London’s market will and has already begun to rise, making it a worthy investment for 2020.
However, you may be thinking, “But, can I afford it?” Buying your first home is always going to be difficult and will make you stretch your money as far as possible. Don’t forget to compare removal, surveying and conveyancing quotes by using comparison websites like Compare My Move and to save for that all-important deposit as soon as possible.
It’s also important to compare the individual areas of London to help you find the right location for you and your budget. But, trust me, it’ll be worth it! London is forever on the rise and contains a variety of houses for you to call home. To start you on your house-hunting journey, here are 6 areas of London that first-time buyers should invest in.
Barking and Dagenham
A major part of buying any house is calculating the costs – one of which is stamp duty. First-time buyers in London don’t have to pay stamp duty on houses valued up to £300,000, which is one of the many reasons why Barking and Dagenham is such an attractive area for first-time buyers. The current average property price is below this threshold at £298,660.
Not only are you saving yourself from this extra added cost, but it’s also one of the cheapest areas of London in general.
What makes this borough a worthy investment for first-time buyers is not only it’s affordable property prices, but also the upcoming work to be done to improve the area even further. Since 2018, plans have been in the works to make the area a “mini-manhattan”, bringing in around 6,000 new homes all within an affordable price range. Barking town centre will also be revitalised, further proving that this unsuspecting London borough is definitely one to invest in.
Another highly affordable area of London, Newham currently has an average property price of £356,049, with first-time buyers paying an average of £347,124. Only 5 miles from the city centre, Newham is a great area for commuters and those wishing to live closer to the city without the sky-high prices that come with it.
One of the most popular areas within this borough is East Ham. With tree-lined Victorian terraces, excellent schools and a thriving high street, it’s popularity is constantly increasing. There are also plans to build even more houses for first-time buyers in the next few years, as well as new cafes and shops. There’s so much to explore already but with this upcoming regeneration plan, you’ll be overwhelmed by the number of choices before you!
Croydon is another great area for first-time buyers in London, with an average house price of £361,580. Croydon has seen many young families and professionals flock to its homes, with many green spaces offering an escape from the busy lifestyle. With plans for the new Westfield shopping/leisure complex in the works for 2020-2023, interest in this area will only increase.
For those foodies out there, Boxpark is filled with delicious street food and independent stores, adding to the overall charm of the area. There are also a lot of shared ownership opportunities for first-time buyers, which is another way to gradually purchase and eventually own your first house. As an added feast for the eyes, the town centre also now has around 60 murals created by local artists, making it a visually and emotionally vibrant part of London.
With local markets, a close-knit community and a range of affordable housing, Lewisham is definitely a London borough to consider with an average property price of £407,894. From large Victorian houses to quaint villas, there’s a lot to choose from and the range is only going to grow as more and more modern flats and properties are being added.
The area is constantly growing and thriving, creating a welcoming and diverse community for all new homeowners. There has been a lot of refurbishing throughout the area in the last few years and there’s still more to come with plans for new houses and transport links.
A breeding ground for culture and arts-based festivals, Hounslow currently has an average house price of £401,425. It’s the perfect location for young families with lots of play areas and green spaces available. It has excellent transport links and is only a 20-minute drive from Heathrow Airport. More refurbishments are in the works, but there’s still a lot of affordable housing to choose from.
There are so many art centres and quirky cafes to explore, as well as the award-winning Local Nature Reserve. For an extra treat, try and catch the Hounslow Night of Festivals for a range of music, carnivals and a celebration of Hounslow heritage!
Once voted the second happiest place to live in London, Bromley has an average property price of £430,941. It has amazing transport links to and around London, making it a commuter’s haven. For housing options, there’s plenty to choose from with little cottages and victorian houses to a variety of new-builds that are constantly popping up.
For all you historians out there, there’s Charles Darwin’s house, Chislehurst Caves and a whole range of other spectacles to marvel at. If you’re the “shop ‘til you drop” type, then there’s also The Glades shopping centre as well as the Charters Market for more unique discoveries.
Wherever you’re thinking of moving to as a first-time buyer, don’t forget to do your research to make sure it’s the perfect place for you to personally call home. Save yourself as much money as you can by comparing removal quotes and start saving as early as possible – your dream home is waiting for you, just be patient!