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syed

Little Help With Areas

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I have some knowledge of the areas of London through research I've been trying to do on the net and stumbled onto this forum (+sub-forum).

I'm moving to London due to a job starting later this year (have 4 or 5 months yet).

The closest tube station to the firm is Blackfriars (closed for work) so will be using Temple for now.

I didnt want to live particularly far from the centre - is 20-30mins (via tube) unreasonable? I hope not :P

Looking for a 2 bedroom property in a decent area for say around 240k-280k.

The areas that I had somewhat narrowed it down to where;

Camden, Stratford, Docklands area, Bow, Southwark, Clapham South, Bermondsey.

Each time I try to find more information, I tend to find one good, then a bad thing! :o

- Camden seemed nice and recommended by a fair few but then I found another source suggesting its 'quirky' and dangerous at night and lot of drug users around?

- Stratford doesnt seem highly rated on this forum, it did seem rough...

- Bermondsey I've not found that much information about, but some suggested it is a bit dangerous too.

- Southwark ive been able to find very little information about, some property very expensive, some affordable but the great advantage of being so close to work?

- Docklands was suggested by some family (who's opinion I dont trust enough to take their word for) due to Olympics investment etc but then on this forum, seems to suggest that it probably wont improve the area that much either?

- Read decent things about Clapham but not sure about Clapham south, again can be difficult to find information!

- Bow looked nice with some of the flat complexes and its on the district line too with the tube. Wasnt sure about the area entirely either?

I could be completely off the mark with some places, probably have missed out other places in my searches and that's why I've come to you guys!

Thanks for any help, appreciate it ;)

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tough question since you're unlikely to come across anyone who has direct experience of living in more than one or two of those places, and you don't really know what an area's like unless you've lived there.

of course you may have friends and/or family in some of these areas, which might be a key factor for you, and your own circumstances including marital status & all that are v important too, but for what it's worth i would say:

  1. reject docklands [not especially cheap, generally sterile & depressing, ghost town at the weekend, pointless to live there unless that's where your job is];
  2. reject bermondsey, stratford on account of not being very nice;
  3. southwark's an interesting one because it would enable you to walk to work, it's a bit of a so-so area but the distance would be appealing
  4. i can't say anything about bow, have barely heard anything about it;
  5. if a toss up between clapham south and camden, probably favour the latter if you're relatively young and/or trendy, otherwise the former.

but i definitely would not buy until you've properly found out whether you like the job, the city, and so on.

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I'm in a relatively similar situation, aiming to move to London but dotting between different areas.

I definitely get a feel for a place as soon as I get to an area, but it is difficult as a few streets down can have a big impact.

For example a friend lives in a gorgeous little 1 bed basement flat in Clapham South, but when I searched for the same area I got places come up a few streets away, but turned out they were ex council places. I still favour Clapham a lot, but for my budget of £250k I find it difficult to find anywhere thats 2 beds and not ex council.

Try http://www.stuckinlondon.com/ for reviews of area's, written from a rental perspective.

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Southwark would seem the best out of that lot. It's a mixed area. Very close to central London but with a quiet feel. There are some dodgy parts (the Nelson estate springs to mind) but there are some very quiet pleasant parts, like the Roupell Street area near Waterloo East station, which feels more like the back streets of Cambridge than London.

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I have some knowledge of the areas of London through research I've been trying to do on the net and stumbled onto this forum (+sub-forum).

I'm moving to London due to a job starting later this year (have 4 or 5 months yet).

The closest tube station to the firm is Blackfriars (closed for work) so will be using Temple for now.

I didnt want to live particularly far from the centre - is 20-30mins (via tube) unreasonable? I hope not :P

Looking for a 2 bedroom property in a decent area for say around 240k-280k.

The areas that I had somewhat narrowed it down to where;

Camden, Stratford, Docklands area, Bow, Southwark, Clapham South, Bermondsey.

Each time I try to find more information, I tend to find one good, then a bad thing! :o

- Camden seemed nice and recommended by a fair few but then I found another source suggesting its 'quirky' and dangerous at night and lot of drug users around?

- Stratford doesnt seem highly rated on this forum, it did seem rough...

- Bermondsey I've not found that much information about, but some suggested it is a bit dangerous too.

- Southwark ive been able to find very little information about, some property very expensive, some affordable but the great advantage of being so close to work?

- Docklands was suggested by some family (who's opinion I dont trust enough to take their word for) due to Olympics investment etc but then on this forum, seems to suggest that it probably wont improve the area that much either?

- Read decent things about Clapham but not sure about Clapham south, again can be difficult to find information!

- Bow looked nice with some of the flat complexes and its on the district line too with the tube. Wasnt sure about the area entirely either?

I could be completely off the mark with some places, probably have missed out other places in my searches and that's why I've come to you guys!

Thanks for any help, appreciate it ;)

Errr....

Why dont you just rent somewhere and see if you like it before spending a fortune on a flat there?

Generally with your budget you wont find much in your price in most of those areas I'm afraid, except for Stratford, Bow and Docklands (and there is a reason for that...)

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Southwark would seem the best out of that lot. It's a mixed area. Very close to central London but with a quiet feel. There are some dodgy parts (the Nelson estate springs to mind) but there are some very quiet pleasant parts, like the Roupell Street area near Waterloo East station, which feels more like the back streets of Cambridge than London.

The houses on Roupell Street sell for 600K plus, it's a very expensive area...although it shouldn't be considering the houses there are all tiny Cottages.

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The houses on Roupell Street sell for 600K plus, it's a very expensive area...although it shouldn't be considering the houses there are all tiny Cottages.

agreed... it is beautiful, though. like a little coronation street or something only in the shadow of waterloo station and with no poor people living there [only joking, kind of].

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My dad is looking to buy as a long term investment, and since im moving to London anyway, I'd get it for now. If I didnt like the job/place, I'd just move elsewhere but he's happy to keep and invest in it anyway.

I cant exactly rent for a while at each area to see which I prefer but so long as its relatively clean, safe and has the basics and well connected with transport, Ill be happy with whatever the area is. Im pretty non-fussy, will be working long hours and probably meet all friends in the central anyway. Seems a waste to spend a year or 2 renting when that money can go towards a mortgage. Especially as the funds for buying are already there (and dont want prices going up again slowly..)

Ill have a closer look at Clapham South, Southwark and Bow then. (Probably try and go down for a couple of weeks; visit the areas and check out some houses).

Thanks for all the help guys! :)

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My dad is looking to buy as a long term investment, and since im moving to London anyway, I'd get it for now. If I didnt like the job/place, I'd just move elsewhere but he's happy to keep and invest in it anyway.

I cant exactly rent for a while at each area to see which I prefer but so long as its relatively clean, safe and has the basics and well connected with transport, Ill be happy with whatever the area is. Im pretty non-fussy, will be working long hours and probably meet all friends in the central anyway. Seems a waste to spend a year or 2 renting when that money can go towards a mortgage. Especially as the funds for buying are already there (and dont want prices going up again slowly..)

Ill have a closer look at Clapham South, Southwark and Bow then. (Probably try and go down for a couple of weeks; visit the areas and check out some houses).

Thanks for all the help guys! :)

Why not just rent a place in Clapham South then to see if you actually like it rather than just jazz £250k up the wall.... :huh:

.... oh I see, daddy is paying... :unsure:

...oh, house prices can only go up (but SLOWLY)... :blink:

Words fail me... <_<

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Why not just rent a place in Clapham South then to see if you actually like it rather than just jazz £250k up the wall.... :huh:

.... oh I see, daddy is paying... :unsure:

...oh, house prices can only go up (but SLOWLY)... :blink:

Words fail me... <_<

What is to particularly like about an area? I've lived in 4 or 5 different places and they've all been fine for me.

Whether I buy a place or rent a place, i'd still need to pick one place.

How would you be 'jazzing' 250k up the wall? Just because you buy a property does not mean the property value becomes nil the next day, it will (assuming you buy at fair value) roughly hold its price in the short term.

Sure, theoretically prices can go down again but there seems to be no particular indication that the outlook is getting worse and if anything, things are slowly starting to recover. Unless you know something everyone else doesnt?

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"Looking for a 2 bedroom property in a decent area for say around 240k-280k."

You'll be lucky to get an ex-local council flat in most of those areas for that sort of money!

Sorry to disappoint you, but you'll be looking to pay at least £300k for something decent close to the centre.

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What is to particularly like about an area? I've lived in 4 or 5 different places and they've all been fine for me.

Whether I buy a place or rent a place, i'd still need to pick one place.

How would you be 'jazzing' 250k up the wall? Just because you buy a property does not mean the property value becomes nil the next day, it will (assuming you buy at fair value) roughly hold its price in the short term.

Sure, theoretically prices can go down again but there seems to be no particular indication that the outlook is getting worse and if anything, things are slowly starting to recover. Unless you know something everyone else doesnt?

Syed - welcome to HPC. If you are thinking of buying a house, and don't believe that houses will all cost two pound 50 in six weeks time you might get some abuse.

Clapham South ok, but be aware that the northern line is not called the misery line for no reason. Getting the tube from clapham into town is seriously unpleasant unless you are getting the tube before 7.30am. If you are working in blackfriars then i would suggest somewhere closer to clapham north: you can then get the overland train from clapham high street, change at denmark hill and get a train into blackfriars. I used to do this when i lived in clapham, and is pretty civilised - you generally get a seat, you are not underground, and its quite quick.

good luck

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What is to particularly like about an area? I've lived in 4 or 5 different places and they've all been fine for me.

Whether I buy a place or rent a place, i'd still need to pick one place.

There is a lot of difference between Stratford and Clapham South - trust me

How would you be 'jazzing' 250k up the wall? Just because you buy a property does not mean the property value becomes nil the next day, it will (assuming you buy at fair value) roughly hold its price in the short term.

It depends if you are leveraged or not, I know someone who (against my advice) bought in mid-2007 and is in NE now> If you dont need to borrow timing is much less important

Sure, theoretically prices can go down again but there seems to be no particular indication that the outlook is getting worse and if anything, things are slowly starting to recover. Unless you know something everyone else doesnt?

Based on massive government money printing on a historically unprecedented scale yes, on balance do you think the next move in interest rates will be up or down?

I know that much...

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"Looking for a 2 bedroom property in a decent area for say around 240k-280k."

You'll be lucky to get an ex-local council flat in most of those areas for that sort of money!

Sorry to disappoint you, but you'll be looking to pay at least £300k for something decent close to the centre.

Well I know my budget is a bit of a dream but I had to start somewhere. Looks like ill be able to look more at the 270k-300k budget now but we'll see what happens.

Btw how do you know if its ex-local council flats? Im presuming I should be steering clear?

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Well I know my budget is a bit of a dream but I had to start somewhere. Looks like ill be able to look more at the 270k-300k budget now but we'll see what happens.

Btw how do you know if its ex-local council flats? Im presuming I should be steering clear?

They look like sh1t generally and can have big design problems

The major troubles are:

- neighbours

- councils levy big repair bills for rennovating blocks on owners

Some ex-council properties, eg period houses, are fine

To be fair a lot of the 1980s and later Council stuff is probably better built than your average Barratt slavebox

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Syed - welcome to HPC. If you are thinking of buying a house, and don't believe that houses will all cost two pound 50 in six weeks time you might get some abuse.

Clapham South ok, but be aware that the northern line is not called the misery line for no reason. Getting the tube from clapham into town is seriously unpleasant unless you are getting the tube before 7.30am. If you are working in blackfriars then i would suggest somewhere closer to clapham north: you can then get the overland train from clapham high street, change at denmark hill and get a train into blackfriars. I used to do this when i lived in clapham, and is pretty civilised - you generally get a seat, you are not underground, and its quite quick.

good luck

Thanks for the help (ill bear the advice in mind :P)

The route sounds good, just need to see prices of property.. looks expensive at first glance.

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They look like sh1t generally and can have big design problems

The major troubles are:

- neighbours

- councils levy big repair bills for rennovating blocks on owners

Some ex-council properties, eg period houses, are fine

To be fair a lot of the 1980s and later Council stuff is probably better built than your average Barratt slavebox

How lovely.. ill ask my architect friend in London, he can spot an ugly 1960s building from miles away :lol:

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If your Dad has £300k cash in the bank earning nothing, with a reliable tenant (his son), he'll be getting around 6% net of tax on his money so I can see why it's an attractive investment for him.

The bad news is that £300k, even in a buyer's market, will only buy you a 1-bed sh*thole, or a moderately attractive place with a very short lease, in Zone 1 (your 30 minute commute).

Get into Zone 2 and your money will go much further, possibly even a small two bedder, but your travel time will be around 45 mins. I have to tell you that a 45 minute commute, door to door, is considered very civilised in this city, though it would horrify the average Mancunian, say.

Do not forget bus routes when plotting your commute - London buses are vastly more regular (and usually more pleasant) than elsewhere, and being on a main artery bus route doesn't seem to impact on house prices as much as a nearby tube station does, though in many ways it's a much nicer journey into work.

Also think about your background - every London area seems to have a distinct sociodemographic, and you and your friends will find some more pleasant than most.

Clapham, for example, is full of nice university-educated middle class kids helped on to the property ladder by their parents, but it is overwhelmingly white. A friend of mine is married to a Philipino girl (also very middle class, as it happens) but tells me she is regularly mistaken for the nanny, because the locals just can't compute that being Filipino and living in SW11 doesn't automatically mean "staff"!

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If your Dad has £300k cash in the bank earning nothing, with a reliable tenant (his son), he'll be getting around 6% net of tax on his money so I can see why it's an attractive investment for him.

The bad news is that £300k, even in a buyer's market, will only buy you a 1-bed sh*thole, or a moderately attractive place with a very short lease, in Zone 1 (your 30 minute commute).

Get into Zone 2 and your money will go much further, possibly even a small two bedder, but your travel time will be around 45 mins. I have to tell you that a 45 minute commute, door to door, is considered very civilised in this city, though it would horrify the average Mancunian, say.

Do not forget bus routes when plotting your commute - London buses are vastly more regular (and usually more pleasant) than elsewhere, and being on a main artery bus route doesn't seem to impact on house prices as much as a nearby tube station does, though in many ways it's a much nicer journey into work.

Also think about your background - every London area seems to have a distinct sociodemographic, and you and your friends will find some more pleasant than most.

Clapham, for example, is full of nice university-educated middle class kids helped on to the property ladder by their parents, but it is overwhelmingly white. A friend of mine is married to a Philipino girl (also very middle class, as it happens) but tells me she is regularly mistaken for the nanny, because the locals just can't compute that being Filipino and living in SW11 doesn't automatically mean "staff"!

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If your Dad has £300k cash in the bank earning nothing, with a reliable tenant (his son), he'll be getting around 6% net of tax on his money so I can see why it's an attractive investment for him.

The bad news is that £300k, even in a buyer's market, will only buy you a 1-bed sh*thole, or a moderately attractive place with a very short lease, in Zone 1 (your 30 minute commute).

Get into Zone 2 and your money will go much further, possibly even a small two bedder, but your travel time will be around 45 mins. I have to tell you that a 45 minute commute, door to door, is considered very civilised in this city, though it would horrify the average Mancunian, say.

Do not forget bus routes when plotting your commute - London buses are vastly more regular (and usually more pleasant) than elsewhere, and being on a main artery bus route doesn't seem to impact on house prices as much as a nearby tube station does, though in many ways it's a much nicer journey into work.

Also think about your background - every London area seems to have a distinct sociodemographic, and you and your friends will find some more pleasant than most.

Clapham, for example, is full of nice university-educated middle class kids helped on to the property ladder by their parents, but it is overwhelmingly white. A friend of mine is married to a Philipino girl (also very middle class, as it happens) but tells me she is regularly mistaken for the nanny, because the locals just can't compute that being Filipino and living in SW11 doesn't automatically mean "staff"!

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If your Dad has £300k cash in the bank earning nothing, with a reliable tenant (his son), he'll be getting around 6% net of tax on his money so I can see why it's an attractive investment for him.

The bad news is that £300k, even in a buyer's market, will only buy you a 1-bed sh*thole, or a moderately attractive place with a very short lease, in Zone 1 (your 30 minute commute).

Get into Zone 2 and your money will go much further, possibly even a small two bedder, but your travel time will be around 45 mins. I have to tell you that a 45 minute commute, door to door, is considered very civilised in this city, though it would horrify the average Mancunian, say.

Do not forget bus routes when plotting your commute - London buses are vastly more regular (and usually more pleasant) than elsewhere, and being on a main artery bus route doesn't seem to impact on house prices as much as a nearby tube station does, though in many ways it's a much nicer journey into work.

Also think about your background - every London area seems to have a distinct sociodemographic, and you and your friends will find some more pleasant than most.

Clapham, for example, is full of nice university-educated middle class kids helped on to the property ladder by their parents, but it is overwhelmingly white. A friend of mine is married to a Philipino girl (also very middle class, as it happens) but tells me she is regularly mistaken for the nanny, because the locals just can't compute that being Filipino and living in SW11 doesn't automatically mean "staff"!

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Camden is quite nice. Yeah trendy if you go to the markets. Drugs going down if you so happen to be in a club at 2 am in the morning. No more druggies than anywhere else.

Not sure how the prices compare with the other areas.

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If you can ride a bike well, and your work has a shower, consider biking around. One of the best things I ever did was buy a bike. And then another after that one got stolen. I think I'm up to number four now. But that's a lot less than four years of tube.

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...

I'm moving to London due to a job starting later this year (have 4 or 5 months yet).

The closest tube station to the firm is Blackfriars (closed for work) so will be using Temple for now.

I didnt want to live particularly far from the centre - is 20-30mins (via tube) unreasonable? I hope not :P

Looking for a 2 bedroom property in a decent area for say around 240k-280k.

The areas that I had somewhat narrowed it down to where;

Camden, Stratford, Docklands area, Bow, Southwark, Clapham South, Bermondsey.

Each time I try to find more information, I tend to find one good, then a bad thing! :o

- Camden seemed nice and recommended by a fair few but then I found another source suggesting its 'quirky' and dangerous at night and lot of drug users around?

- Stratford doesnt seem highly rated on this forum, it did seem rough...

- Bermondsey I've not found that much information about, but some suggested it is a bit dangerous too.

- Southwark ive been able to find very little information about, some property very expensive, some affordable but the great advantage of being so close to work?

- Docklands was suggested by some family (who's opinion I dont trust enough to take their word for) due to Olympics investment etc but then on this forum, seems to suggest that it probably wont improve the area that much either?

- Read decent things about Clapham but not sure about Clapham south, again can be difficult to find information!

- Bow looked nice with some of the flat complexes and its on the district line too with the tube. Wasnt sure about the area entirely either?

...

I know lots of people have given opinions on the places, I'll give you things to consider from a transport perspective, since you'll be going to/from work 5 days a week I assume...

Also consider that you may change job before you move home! So think about the location's accessibility to Canary Wharf, the city and the West End...

- Camden is very busy, traffic is bad, and you'd have to use the northern line, but at least you can get close to work without change.

- Stratford, good transport links to the city/Canary Wharf/West End, but not great to Temple... (Have to interchange), or quite a walk from Holborn. Will be quite a construction site for a few years yet though!

- Southwark, up and coming, good if you can find a cheap place not surrounded by council estates (good luck!). Can walk to work, so will save about £90 a month which you can put to the mortgage instead. Can walk to the city (just), and good link to Canary Wharf and West End. But could be a clue as to why you think it's so pricey!!

- Bermondsey/Canada Water. Jubilee line is fairly fast and reliable, and the least hot of the tubes since it's the newest. Should be able to get to Waterloo and walk over the bridge to Temple - though quite a walk. Good also for Canary Wharf/City/West End

- Docklands similar to Bermondsey but further away so less convenient!

- Clapham is quite nice, but traffic is awful, Very dependant on Northern line, which is very hot, unreliable and always jammed packed.

- Bow. Note the district line is very slow because of all the stops, but at least you can get to Temple without changing.

Note, personally I live around the Bermondsey/Canada Water area, so my opinions may be biased!!

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If you can ride a bike well, and your work has a shower, consider biking around. One of the best things I ever did was buy a bike. And then another after that one got stolen. I think I'm up to number four now. But that's a lot less than four years of tube.

I used to know someone who cycled to work

She got run over by a bus

Every day in London some cyclist is seriously injured in an accident

I'd rather get the tube

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