With a thumping election win in his back pocket, Boris Johnson is quietly lowering expectations for a third Heathrow runway which in property terms is pretty good news. For some time now, the area’s low prices and good transport links have been in the sights of investors and property developers and they’re probably glad to see the back of any controversy. As a result, the neighbourhoods to the West of London namely Hayes, Hounslow, Southall and Harrow are all showing great promise and, together with some overlooked pockets in East London, and some impressive development pyrotechnics along the Thames, are being hailed as London’s latest property hotspots.
In times past, the western fringes of London have been seen as a tricky commute due to the sheer distances involved, but as the promise of the high-speed Elizabeth Line (Crossrail) gets closer, whole neighbourhoods are beginning to perk up. Traditionally, property development has followed the river which meant that the likes of Richmond and Chiswick flourished, leaving other places in limbo, however, things are beginning to change. The network of canals that crisscross the area are proving to be the ideal sites for a slew of new developments, all well-appointed and competitively priced.
Apartments that are sited along the Grand Union Canal and its branches are attracting a lot of positive attention as they provide uninterrupted views across landscaped gardens and scenic waterways. Hayes Village, Southall Waterside and Alperton’s Grand Union are prime examples of the type of luxurious new developments that are transforming their respective West London fringe suburbs. Keenly priced, they provide perfect buy-to-let investment opportunities as they all stand to benefit from the opening of the new high-speed Elizabeth Line (Crossrail) rail link and will, therefore, have no trouble attracting quality tenants. Apartments at Grand Union start from £395,000*. At Hayes Village, a 5% gross yield rental guarantee for 24 months paid from the day of completion is an indication of the confidence that developers and we as estate agents, have in this emerging location. Similar deals are on offer at Western Circus which is located in Acton, a little bit nearer to Central London. Harrow also offers a good investment location. With the Metropolitan Line Underground station, you can get into the City’s financial district in 35-40 minutes.
No doubt about it: the relocation of some of the world’s heaviest financial firms to Canary Wharf has irreversibly changed the face of East London and subsequent waves of redevelopment have drastically upgraded the E14 postcode. However, there are still pockets of regeneration potential to be found in the streets that feed into the Docklands peninsula. Poplar and Surrey Quays are areas that can still be regarded as rental hotspots as they offer proximity to Canary Wharf without the prohibitive prices, with new developments like Blackwall Reach and Marine Wharf being of particular interest to corporate professionals. Here, they can find that walking or taking the Thames riverboat to work is a distinctive component of the daily work/life balance.
To many buy-to-let investors, Zone 1 may seem to be something of a mirage: any prospective yields being outweighed by the massive size of capital outlay. Big changes on the southern bank of the Thames are changing this perspective as the Nine Elms mega-development reaches completion and nearby areas start to smarten up. Oval Village, a Berkeley scheme, is one such example. It’s right in the edge of Zone 1, just set back lightly from the River and its competitive pricing when compared with similar apartments in the area is sure to tick all the boxes for many prospective renters providing a steady income for investors.
Even in a less congested market, building a buy-to-let portfolio should always be done with consideration and research and London is far from over in this respect. Investigate areas fringing the city, particularly overlooked ‘pockets’ and you’ll find that good deals are yet to be uncovered and placemaking is on the rise. We have a team of sales professionals who can help guide you. Whether you are looking for an off-plan property or a resale property, we have many developments we can introduce you to. Contact us today for an informal chat with no obligation.
*prices prevailing at time of publishing
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