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London areas - where to buy?

edited 5 February 2014 at 5:52PM in House Buying, Renting & Selling
115 replies 168.5K views


  • lowislowis Forumite
    2K posts
    for 300 a week you could rent a flat in clerkenwell
    i live there and love it
    you can walk to the west end and soho in about 20 minutes
    you can walk to hoxton and shoreditch in about 10 minutes
    islington is a 10 min stroll too
    great cinemas at the barbican and in islington
    waitrose at the barbican, sainsbury's in islington, somerfile at old street
    an abundance of bars and restaurants (some of londond's best!)
    fantastic transport links - if you ever need them - personally i rarely have the need as i can walk everywhere i need to go from my flat :-)
    shoreditch park 15 mins away
    and the Southbank is about a twenty minute walk away.
  • I agree I think Clerkenwell would be great. I wanted to live there (I work about 10 minute walk from there), but I had a samller budget and couldn't afford it. That road in Clerkenwell with the restaurants and cafe's is nice to have on your doorstep, but as you pointed out you can walk to so many other places. I love walking!
  • handerhander Forumite
    201 posts
    Almost all areas in London (that someone with realistic amounts of cash can afford) are in close proximity to areas of deprivation that can be both dangerous and, frankly, unsightly. I think it's something Londoners are used to.

    I live in a reasonable part of Maida Vale and there are plenty of social problems associated with poverty on my street, let alone in the area.

    It's a very tough choice - especially if you're not restricted by needs of work - but the points to bear in mind are always:
    1) Location - if your prospective purchase in at a road junction, it most likely always will be.
    2) Location - if it's not near a tube or has poor train links then it almost always (in your time there) will remain this way. Even extensions to the various lines, eg East London are at the moment not particularly impressive in my mind.
    3) Location - some areas will take a huge amount of time to regenerate. If you see yourself moving before this happens, then it's worth bearing in mind that your prospective buyer will be looking at a similar thing.

    And think about outside space. Whether it's a garden (often small in London, of course) or a roof terrace or even a largish balcony, they will pay dividends during fair weather. And also when it comes to sell on.
  • hechizerohechizero Forumite
    132 posts
    No offence to the residents of London. However it is good to have an opinion and I am sorry if mine upsets you.

    The north:

    Wood Green - The high street is a dump and the area is surrounded by worse areas eastwards.
    Edmonton - This is a industrial scar. Pollution filled and dangerous.
    Tottenham - A neighbour of the above two. These areas provoke nightmares. The ones where you try to run, but your feet don't move...

    Anywhere right on the A406 is pretty much poor.

    Palmers Green - Nice
    Winchmore Hill - A dollop of good
    Finchley - Very Suburban, but ok
    Highgate - Not bad and closer to city
    Golders Green - Perhaps not
    Hampstead - V. Nice, but shoebox syndrome for that money

    The north west:

    Dotted with some areas that can only be described as dour and unworldly. If you want to travel abroad, just hop on a line and get up there for the weekend. I would avoid the entire north west except for perhaps parts of Willesden Green/Brondesbury. There may be some other good spots, but to be honest I don't know the whole north west, and perhaps a wise decision not to explore too deeply...

    I am not going to review the south. We all know what goes down south of the river :D "cue screeching car tires, sirens and random gunfire" Only kidding!

    Wherever you choose to live, good luck!
  • pigeonpiepigeonpie Forumite
    1.2K posts
    To my alarm I found myself in SE London; had always lived SW London which has got too expensive - Balham and Tooting prices are insane & they are horrible (sorry but they are). A lot of SE London is grot, but Greenwich (parts of) and Blackheath and the adjoining bits of Lewisham and Lee are nice, especially near Greenwich Park which is safe and lovely.
    Charlton (parts of) is much cheaper & not too bad but trains only for the moment.
    Woolwich is getting the DLR in 2 yrs time but it's a bit bleak right now.

    If you want 2 or 3 beds for 200k you'll have to head south, to Lee or Hither Green, or east to Charlton and Woolwich and quite probably purpose built.
    The advantage though is no tube, just DLR and overland and you can get to London Bridge and Bank easily.
    Greenwich is zone 2.
    like's been said, try, enter 200k and see what comes up.
    It's nicer here than central London as there are green spaces and it's less noisy at night. But our road is nice but just 3 mins away is a horrible road, not v unsafe, just vintage London grot 'n litter. You just have to identify and go and look.
    I wish I could live in Muswell Hill but it's too far for OH to work. Commuting is exhausting: you might as well stay in Swindon. :)
  • SE London is where I live! I hadn't been in London for long enough to be prejudiced against the South before I moved here, and I think people in the North that live on a tube line don't know what they're missing. Trains aren't great, but when I compare it to tube travel and being rammed in in such heat it is not so bad at all. We were renting in Blackheath wich is lovely (and also only 25 minute walk to Greenwich), but are in the process of buying and couldn't afford Blackheath so looked at adjoining parts of Lewisham, Lee and Hither Green. We are buying 5 minutes from Hither Green station, lovely parks nearby, it is not Blackheath, but not a bad area (just 20 minutes walk to Blackheath, but now Greenwich is really too far us to walk to). You need to know the right parts of these areas though, as some of Lewisham is terrible. Even Hither green, north east of the railway line is ok, but I wouldn't want to live on the south east of the railway line. There are not too many places in London you could get a 2 bed victorian terrace with a garden for £230,000 in an area you actually wouldn't mind living in.
  • Bargain_RzlBargain_Rzl Forumite
    6.3K posts
    I've lived in various parts of SE London (Ladywell, Catford, Welling, about to move to Camberwell), most of which I think a lot of people would turn up their noses at. But I LOVED Ladywell - a "London village" atmosphere without the horrendous prices of other "London villages". I knew all my neighbours - rare in London - there's lots of green space nearby, and access to good bus routes as well as the train. Catford was grotty but fine, Welling is grotty but fine, and Camberwell (the Peckham end) will be grotty but fine (I wouldn't be moving there if I didn't already have a good "sense" of the area). Depends what you're looking for. Grotty but fine is what I'm used to :D
    :)Operation Get in Shape :)
  • There was a big debate in the local SE newpaper (news shopper) because somebody from abroad visited a friend in Catford and wrote to the paper saying they thought it should be called Crapford which sparked a bit of local debate. The sad thing is many of the long standing locals agreed the area was fairly crap. If people have lived somewhere their whole life thinks it is crap, I think it is best avoided. When me and my house mates are not calling the place Crapford, we occassionally call it Crackford.
  • What an interesting thread. Perhaps a better idea is to get a list of areas to avoid. I would avoid:
    Brixton, Kilburn Park and Camden. I've also heard bad things about Seven Sisters.

    Good luck
    Lightbulb moment: June 2006:shocked:
    Debts June 2006: £18,100
    Egg Card [strike]£13,400 [/strike] £12,350; Loan [strike]£3,500[/strike] £2,300; Other [strike]£3,700[/strike] £3,100; Overdraft [strike]£1,500[/strike] £585
    Debts Setp 2006: £15,300
  • gingercordialgingercordial Forumite
    1.5K posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Name Dropper
    What an interesting thread. Perhaps a better idea is to get a list of areas to avoid. I would avoid:
    Brixton, Kilburn Park and Camden. I've also heard bad things about Seven Sisters.

    Good luck

    I think that's a pretty good assessment!

    Brixton: the only place where anyone I know personally has been mugged at knifepoint.

    Kilburn Park: I thought the area was OK but the flat we saw up there had a really bad rodent problem.

    Camden: great nightlife but you'll be living in a rabbit hutch with drunk people throwing up in your doorway all night.

    Seven Sisters: just feels extremely dodgy! Same goes for most of Tottenham (and most of Hackney in fact).

    I live in Finsbury Park and I love it, it's not exactly swanky but it has a good vibe and not too expensive, although the council tax varies hugely depending on whether you fall into Islington, Haringey or Hackney.
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