Recent reports of lagging London house prices have generally been met with a groan, as the mortgaged majority fret over the value of their property investment.
This is not the case for would-be first-time buyers, though, who might find that they can snap up a home for less than they initially expected, or be able to buy sooner than planned.
But as always, the price they will pay depends on the location of their property. New research from developer Project Etopia charts the average price paid by London first-time buyers in July 2019 compared to the same month the previous year, and finds that buyers in some boroughs have been getting significantly deeper discounts than others.
Newham sees biggest savings
Newham comes out on top, with new homeowners enjoying a discount of nearly 10 per cent and paying an average of £325,053 for their properties.
Brent and the City of London recorded the second-highest drop at 7.7 per cent, proving that there are savings to be made in both inner and outer London. Outer south London boroughs also look like a good option for first-time buyers, with Merton, Croydon, Sutton and Lewisham all seeing price drops of between 3.5 per cent and 5 per cent.
Pricey Kensington and Chelsea saw a 2.9 per cent drop, putting the average price pid by first-time buyers at £1.13m – the only borough to break the £1m mark.
|Local Authority||Average price||Change YoY|
|City of London||£761,281||-7.7%|
|Kensington and Chelsea||£1,129,554||-2.9%|
|Kingston upon Thames||£422,202||-1.3%|
|City of Westminster||£870,688||-1.0%|
|Barking and Dagenham||£280,049||0.2%|
|Richmond upon Thames||£536,762||0.8%|
|Hammersmith and Fulham||£654,948||1.1%|
In Camden, meanwhile, first-time buyers are paying 9.7 per cent more than last year – the biggest increase out of only seven London boroughs where prices have risen. Project Etopia believes this rise is due to “intense competition” for homes in the popular North London location.
Barking and Dagenham is the cheapest borough to buy in according to the research, with an average price of £280,049 – although prices have increased by a marginal 0.2 per cent since July 2018. Prices also increased in Haringey, Richmond-upon-Thames, Hammersmith and Fulham, Hackney and Greenwich.
Joseph Daniels is chief executive of Project Etopia, which is currently developing a modular housing project called Etopia Corby in Northamptonshire. He says: “A falling market is good news for first-time buyers but intense competition in the capital means not everyone is benefiting from the slowdown and able to get on the ladder.
“It remains vital for first-time buyers to assess their options properly, expand their horizons and consider areas they hadn’t thought of before.”
The list was compiled using data from the Land Registry.