Move over Kensington: Balham is London’s new property hotspot

Balham High Street Photo: HerryLawfordam

The average Prime London home saw prices rise by £95,000 in the past 12 months, according to Marsh & Parsons, but the estate agent’s report highlights an unlikely candidate for the best performing market in the capital: Balham.

The area saw house prices jump £152,000 over the same period, as demand rose for properties further away from the expensive central zones.

Indeed, property prices in Outer Prime areas of the capital are typically 25 per cent lower than the wider Prime London average, says Marsh & Parsons, prompting stronger demand that has, in turn, helped to boost the rate of house price inflation up in suburban ‘villages’. House prices in Outer Prime London climbed 9 per cent during 2014, as a result, compared to a 4.3 per cent annual increase in Prime Central areas.

Balaham led the way, thanks to its appeal among both first-time buyers and young families, with a rise of 21 per cent in value. It was closely followed by leafy Brook Green, where property values are now 19 per cent higher than a year ago. In contrast, average prices in exclusive Prime Central enclaves of Kensington and Holland Park have grown 8 per cent in the past 12 months.

“The prestigious prime property bastions of Kensington, Chelsea and Holland Park will always command worldwide appeal from buyers – however everyday demand for more affordable homes has catapulted Balham and other Outer Prime corners of the capital onto the map,” comments Peter Rollings, CEO of Marsh & Parsons.

The capital’s cooldown, though, remains the overriding trend, as the majority of the house price growth recorded by the agent occurred in the first half of 2014. In the last three months, on the other hand, Prime London property values declined 1.6 per cent, the first quarterly price drop witnessed for three and a half years.

Already in 2015, there are indications that activity has picked up, which will kick-start further price rises, albeit at a calmer pace than last year, forecasts the agency, with annual growth of 3 to 5 per cent expected across the capital.