Wealthy buyers send house prices rocketing as London's Olympic borough of Newham records top rises

A decade after London was selected to host the 2012 games, the Olympic borough of Newham records top property price rises in the capital.
Newham recorded the capital’s top property price rises of more than 23 per cent in a year, according to new Land Registry figures.
The east London borough reached the top of the table largely through rich buyers snapping up new high-end apartments around the former Olympic Village and coveted Royal Victoria Dock. Price rises among average homes in London have been strongest in south-east London, while values in prime central London appear to have stalled.


The figures show Forest Hill saw the capital’s most impressive growth for average homes, followed by price rises in Waltham Forest and the riverside boroughs of Southwark and Lambeth.
As prices in central London begin to teeter, Newham is enjoying the strongest market, with prices up 23.4 per cent. The average price in Newham is now £293,134, largely thanks to high-end developments at both the former Olympic Village and Royal Victoria Docks, which are boosting prices.

The best value is, in fact, to be found in less developed areas such as Forest Hill in south-east London.
“Newham is doing very well, mainly because it’s still affordable,” says James Hyman, head of Cluttons residential agency. “It’s a location that many buyers simply didn’t consider five years ago, but new and improved shops, schools and transport links have all added to Newham’s rise. It’s getting a buzz about it now.”
East London’s performance is particularly impressive with prices up 22.1 per cent year-on-year in Waltham Forest, the second strongest borough. Prices have also outperformed in two riverside boroughs — Southwark (up 21.1 per cent), and Lambeth (up 20.2 per cent).

Prime central London, meanwhile, is struggling to keep pace. The number of £1 million-plus properties in the capital has fallen by 24 per cent in the past year — a trend fuelled by increases to stamp duty and ongoing fears over the possible introduction of a mansion tax.
Kensington and Chelsea, London’s most expensive areas with an average price of almost £1.3 million, only managed an annual price rise of 7.2 per cent in the past year, and also recorded January’s steepest price fall — almost two per cent. Westminster and Camden are faring a little better, with annual price increases of 15 per cent.
Across London, prices fell by 0.2 per cent in January to £458,283, leaving the capital with a 12 per cent annual price rise.
Nick Barnes, head of research at Chestertons, pointed out that London has the best performance in the UK and feels the slowdown is caused by general election jitters plus last autumn’s changes in stamp duty. The brake put on lending by the Mortgage Market Review in April last year has also had an impact.
The best potential for price groups are those that are central, but relatively affordable. Tooting, Hither Green and Limehouse do well, as these are areas where you can still get a four-bedroom house with outside space for less than £1 million.
Jonathan Hudson, managing director of Hudsons, believes that central north London will outperform.
“Bloomsbury still seems to be a sensible area to buy as it sits nicely between the West End and the City — it’s walking distance to both — and a great space for families, with plenty of garden squares and green spaces.
“Neighbouring King’s Cross will see significant price growth, and a lot of sensible money is being spent there.”

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