Nine Elms: two-bedroom flats for first-time buyers amid London's new millionaire's playground

The US Embassy is relocating to Nine Elms, central London's largest regeneration zone — and first-time buyers could be, too.
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Just two years from now, the US Embassy will relocate from Grosvenor Square in Mayfair to set up shop next door to Battersea Dogs and Cats Home. Yet the move is not so surprising once you consider the rapid pace of transformation at Nine Elms. 

Over the next two decades, thousands of people will move into modern riverside towers just south of the River Thames between Battersea and Vauxhall. The multi-billion pound regeneration will bring new arts centres, shops and offices to the area, with a bridge carrying pedestrians and cyclists across the river to Pimlico. 

Almost 2,000 of the new homes are being built by developer Ballymore on a site that will encircle the landmark new American embassy building. 

Embassy Gardens has been designed by architect Terry Farrell for buyers with £5 million to spend on a London flat, with a pool, yoga studio and a boxing ring as part of the facilities. 


Buyers are likely to include embassy staff, overseas investors from Singapore and Hong Kong, and City workers — as well as just under 100 regular first-time buyers. 

Posh Peabody 
Housing association Peabody has already sold 34 discounted one-bedroom flats in the development. It is now selling 50 two-bedroom apartments, priced at £155,000 for a 25 per cent share. 

The light, bright flats are within a block named the Chancery Building, and each will have a private terrace or balcony, with views over the new linear park being built on the Nine Elms site — a landscaped ‘green corridor’ which will be accessible to the public and will link up to the Thames Path. 

Buyers, who must either live or work in Wandsworth borough, will also need to pay about £200 a month in service charges, plus rent on the portion of the property they do not own. 

Vauxhall station is a 10-minute walk away, for Victoria line services and commuter trains to Waterloo — services take from four minutes. In 2020, Nine Elms will get its own Tube station, an extension of the Northern line. 

Lisa Crush, head of sales at Peabody, says the Chancery Building flats are well-designed, in a good location and are a sound investment. Property group CBRE recently forecast that the area would enjoy 5.5 per cent annual capital growth over the next five years. 

The good news is that buyers will be able to move into the flats in the early autumn. The bad news is that they will have to put up with years of building works and few of the planned facilities — including cafés, shops, restaurants, bars and the bridge — are likely to be completed any time soon. 
The light, bright flats are within a block named the Chancery Building

Past: Once a picturesque area filled with willow trees on the marshy banks of the Thames, with the advent of the railways, it became an industrial wasteland of factories and warehouses, criss-crossed by train tracks. 
Future: Central London’s largest regeneration zone, with £15 billion worth of investment in homes, shops, offices and restaurants.
Trivial pursuit: The cluster of new skyscrapers planned for Nine Elms has earned it the nickname Dubai-on-Thames.
What it costs: An average property costs £614,894, down 3.07 per cent in the past year. Renting a two-bedroom flat will cost an average £3,072pcm (source: Zoopla).
First-time buy: Dexters estate agents has a purpose-built one-bedroom flat in Battersea Park Road for £499,999 (
Landmarks: The 50-storey The Tower, St George Wharf, one of N ine E lms’ first and tallest skyscrapers.
Eat: A food quarter at New Covent Garden Market is being redeveloped as part of the project. It’s a bit of a case of jam tomorrow, however, as it won’t open until at least 2020.
Drink: Pub-crawl your way along Battersea Park Road, making sure to stop at the Magic Garden.
Buy: Not much right now, though plenty of shops are planned for Nine Elms over the next few years.
Walk: The linear park is not yet built, but Battersea Park is 10 minutes away. 
Outdoor space: all the discounted flats will have a balcony or terrace, overlooking the linear park. The cube-shaped US Embassy will be a neighbour.

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