JAMES WATTS

James Watts
Best in class doesn't mean you have to have a big budget
18 March 2015

Part of my role at Prime Purchase is finding those hidden gems that are more affordable.  With prime Central London now the domain of the very wealthy and the areas immediately surrounding the centre pricing out the first-time buyer where do those with a smaller budget and a keen eye on a long-term investment go?

The good news is that “best in class” doesn’t mean you have to have the biggest budget.  In our book it’s about buying the best you can within your allocated funds.  There are some pockets of London which offer some real value for money but it’s knowing where to look.

Take Camberwell as an example.  Nestled between Dulwich, Southwark and Stockwell, it is a 12 minute journey into the city  (Blackfriars) and yet still has easy access, on one side, to the more gentrified green area of Dulwich Village, whilst on the other side, is close to one of the oldest parts of the City with its plethora of markets and multi-cultural cuisine.  With several roads boasting some beautiful Georgian architecture Camberwell is well placed for easy access and yet still offers considerably more property for your money.  As an example, a budget of £1m would buy you a 4/5 bedroom terraced house, at just under 2,000 sq. ft.  most likely with the potential to add some square footage over time.

Further north, Whitechapel sits just east of the City and is becoming increasingly fashionable.  An area that is prominent in the art scene, Whitechapel has become progressively transformed in recent years as its grand Georgian town houses mix with smart new developments.  Sitting on the outskirts of the City it has the promise when Cross Rail arrives in 2018 of a 15-20 minute journey to the other side of London.  With £500,000 as the starting point for a good, well positioned 2 bedroom flat it is little wonder that young professionals are flocking to the area, taking advantage of infrastructure improvements and the potential of substantial capital growth over the coming years. 

There is a popular misconception about buying agents only taking on clients with big budgets.  Clients come to us because they have a real need for our service be this as an advisory point or in searching and researching areas.  As with any location marrying up where the real investment opportunities lie with the individual client’s specific needs is key.  And in many respects getting advice on a 2-bedroom house in an up-and-coming area is even more important than buying a property in an established part of London.

 

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