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Properties in St Johns Wood and Primrose Hill growing increasingly popular

By John M. Alcorn Subscribe to RSS | March 20th 2012 | Views:

The expensive prices of homes in central London are leading more buyers to seek alternative addresses to get more for their money. With average prices slightly cheaper, some people have started moving away from prime central London to surrounding regions on the edge of the city centre, reflected in greater demand for property for sale in St Johns Wood and Primrose Hill.

Trevor Abrahmsohn of Glentree Estates said: "30 years ago, St John's Wood was the first leafy suburb outside the Mecca of the West End, with its glittering array of shopping facilities. If you wanted to live in North West London proximity to the West End was crucial and St John's Wood provided an excellent, yet expensive, place to live."

Thirty years later and very little has changed as far as demand for homes in St Johns Wood and Primrose Hill is concerned.

The one thing that all Primrose Hill estate agents have in common is a lack of stock to cater for the high number of applications registering to buy homes in Primrose Hill.

Houses for sale in Primrose Hill are like gold dust in that there are very few on the market at any one time, regularly pushing up property prices in the process.

Andrew Ellinas, director of leadig estate agents Sandfords, said: "Property prices have now risen by nearly 40 per cent since the post-credit-crunch low in March 2008, bringing prices well above the 2008 peak. Restricted supply makes it very likely the trend will continue."

In fact, given the existing shortage of homes in relation to demand, almost any property for sale in London is currently likely to attract a high rate of attention from homebuyers. This is reflected in the fact that the level of transactions in the residential property market hit an 18-month high in February, according to the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors.

Alan Collett, housing spokesman for RICS, said: "With the recent upturn in activity … it seems that a renewed sense of optimism may be slowly returning to the property market. Chartered surveyors' price predictions were more optimistic in almost every area of the country in February."

It is not just the property sales market that is booming in the capital. Many would-be purchasers cannot gain a foot on the UK housing ladder due mainly to stringent mortgage lending conditions, forcing them instead to look at property to rent in London; an attractive proposition for landlords, many of who are benefiting from higher rental returns.

Unsurprisingly, the latest quarterly survey of Private Rented Sector investors carried out by the Young Group shows that London remains the most desirable place to own a buy-to-let investment. A total of 85.1 per cent of respondents to the survey said that they expect rents in the city to continue to rise throughout 2012.

Adam Feather, senior sales negotiator at Foundation Estates, commented: "Low availability of rental homes in the capital has meant that landlords are experiencing fewer void periods and higher rents. Rental values in London have risen significantly in recent years; increasing by about 11 per cent in 2011, with further growth anticipated this year."

John M. Alcorn - About Author:
John Alcorn looks at the London property market and after talking to Primrose Hill estate agents finds that demand for houses for sale in Primrose Hill and property for sale in St Johns Wood is growing.

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