CROSSRAIL 2: WHERE’S BEST TO INVEST?
It’s still two years away from completion, yet Crossrail 1 – now known as the Elizabeth Line – has already added £5.5 billion to property values along its east to west line that traverses London and into the Home Counties. So it’s no wonder that its successor, Crossrail 2, is already causing a rumble down the line.
Words: Fiona Brandhorst
Londoners may have to wait another 17 years before each of its 49 stations welcome commuters, but research by Knight Frank shows that even the anticipation of new transport links has a wide-reaching effect. House prices within a 10 or 15 minute walk from the Elizabeth Line stations have outperformed prices in the wider local authorities by an average of around 5% since it was granted Royal Assent in 2008.
And it is not just the reduced travel times that have attracted buyers. Large regeneration projects improve the areas around stations and provide a wider choice of amenities as well as new residential property. Though it’s yet to be given the official green light, canny property investors are looking ahead to Crossrail 2 opportunities.
Though it’s yet to be given the official green light, canny property investors are looking ahead to opportunities offered by Crossrail 2
Crossing the capital north to south, the new line will link the suburban railway network from Tottenham in north London to Wimbledon in the south west in an effort to keep London’s growing population moving. Thousands of jobs are set to be created and 200,000 new homes will be built as a by-product of the £27 billion project.
George Franks, Director of Sales at Douglas & Gordon, says property investors are already looking for opportunities near stations along the second proposed route. ‘Balham and Wimbledon have experienced significant recent investment and development and now they have the added bonus of a major infrastructure project in the pipeline. Buyers looking for value growth opportunities in Wimbledon should also look at the outlying residential areas such as Tooting, which might offer greater capital returns over the next 15 years.’
Balham and Wimbledon have experienced significant recent investment and development and now they have the added bonus of a major infrastructure project in the pipeline
Wimbledon’s town centre and train station may see years of construction work with offices temporarily relocated and some homes demolished; however, once completed there will be up to 30 trains an hour to central London and beyond, journey times will be cut by up to 20 minutes and most importantly to some more seats creating demand from commuters looking for an easy place to live. Savills is currently selling a six bedroom, 3,041 sq ft late Victorian house in Bernard Gardens around 1,000m away from Wimbledon Station, for £2.495m.
Robert French, Head of Knight Frank’s Clapham office, adds: ‘Buyers will be aware that historically improved infrastructure is usually echoed by economic growth. Houses along the route will now offer the ‘best of both worlds’ and we can expect increased activity and rising prices in the housing market in areas surrounding the proposed route.’
Balham has reinvented itself in the past ten years, with a young, trendy crowd looking to live close to Tooting Bec and Wandsworth Common, says Caspar Bell, research analyst at Chestertons. ‘Young professionals and first-time buyers alike can’t wait to get on the property ladder here, due to its refreshingly down to earth feel with an increasingly vibrant weekend social scene. Balham should continue to deliver good gains over the medium term and becoming a station on the Crossrail 2 map will only enhance this value uplift.’
Angel is also set to benefit from Crossrail 2. It’s already a thriving local centre currently only served by the Northern line
A five-bedroom 3,200 sq ft family house in Balham Park Road with a 140ft garden, off-street parking for two cars and a short walk to Balham Station is being marketed by Knight Frank for £2.150m. North of the river, Angel is also set to benefit from Crossrail 2. It’s already a thriving local centre currently only served by the Northern line – one of the capital’s busiest tubes. A new station here would add more trains, reduce overcrowding and speed up journeys in turn bringing further regeneration to the local area.
According to KFH the average sold price at the Angel was £995,233 in 2015. James Ripp, Sales Manager at KFH Islington, says: ‘The new station will zap passengers through town to the south east in less than 30 minutes. I see buyers migrating south from places further north like Crouch End and prices will start edging up next year.’ KFH is selling a two-bedroom, two-bathroom 835 sq ft apartment in Oakley Crescent, a small cul-de-sac just off City Road near the Angel tube for £844,950. Also worth looking at is a listed Georgian five bedroom house in Myddelton Square (pictured above) with a guide price of £4.25m with Savills.