Prime Central London still offers value

Chelsea is one of the Capital’s most cosmopolitan and affluent areas, set in a stunning oasis of elegance and history, yet it preserves a village atmosphere.

Favoured by Royalty, aristocrats, actors and musicians to the super-wealthy, the area has it all – history, culture, food, drink, beauty and shopping, not to mention an abundance charming green spaces.

The close proximity of higher value areas such as Knightsbridge, South Kensington and Belgravia adds to the appeal.

From studio apartments and bijou mews houses to detached villas and grand townhouses, Chelsea encapsulates the finest of the London property market. The core of the original village, by the Thames, retains some impressive Georgian properties, with plenty of red-brick terraces and mansion blocks in a network of pretty streets dotted with gracious garden squares. New developments are also proving popular with both investors and owner occupiers.

Construction is underway at the Chelsea Barracks site, set to provide 325 private homes. The site of the former John Lewis warehouses have been offered for sale with planning permission for 69 luxury homes and the former police station on Lucan Place, extending to over 20,000 square feet, has also been offered to the market with potential for residential use.

A studio flat for sale in Chelsea may start at £300,000, escalating to multimillion-pound price tags on larger houses for sale. There is even a lock-up garage for sale at Cheyne Gardens for £100,000. Nothing is too grand or too small and there is no shortage of eager buyers, in particular from overseas.

Areas in SW3 close to the river are amongst the most prestigious addresses in London, including Cheyne Walk. Further west in SW10, the area around Chelsea Creek is enjoying considerable regeneration.

Despite more than half of London’s most expensive streets being found in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, what is surprising is the relative value of Chelsea compared with other prime locations.

In SW10, average values at the end of 2014 were £1,341 per square foot, making a medium sized two bedroom flat £960,000 cheaper than in nearby Knightsbridge. The average price per square foot in Q4 2014 across Chelsea was £1,647.

SW10 also has greater scope for potential capital appreciation, with growth since 2011 of 29% compared with 35% enjoyed by the wider Prime Central London market.

High end developments like the aforementioned are likely to drive values in SW10 closer to that of its neighbours.

Prices for residential property in Prime Central London, or PCL, have outperformed Greater London by 30%, and the UK as a whole by 34%, over the past three years. If there is still value in Chelsea, and in particular SW10, now is a good time to invest or move to a larger property.

The demand for extra space in Chelsea has prompted the local authority to take steps to limit basement extensions. This is likely to act as a spur to the market as occupiers are forced to move in order to get the space they require – perhaps just a bit further west to SW10 and benefit from the potential capital appreciation.

If you would like further information on these areas and our latest thoughts on how to acquire a property here and what to pay, contact Garrington.

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