All the benefits of living in London but with a village atmosphere, great pubs and lots of green spaces – what’s not to love about Fulham?
Ask anyone why they like living in Fulham and the chances are they’ll reply ‘the village feel’. It draws young professionals and families alike, with both groups finding plenty to keep them here, from the green spaces of Hurlingham Park, South Park, Eel Brook Common, Parsons Green and Bishop’s Park to the independent shops, top-notch restaurants and lively nightlife – and all just a stone’s throw from central London.
Property is a big draw too, with many people moving from cramped quarters in the heart of town in search of more space, especially growing families who also appreciate the good local schools.
Victorian and Edwardian terraces are in abundance (houses and flats), as well as riverside developments such as Imperial Wharf, Fulham Reach and the upcoming Fulham Riverside.
The most sought-after addresses are around Parsons Green, the Peterborough Estate, Eel Brook Common, Munster Village, South Park, Moore Park Estate, Bishops Park, the Hurlingham Club, Munster Road, the southern section of the ‘Alphabet Streets’, and prime streets leading directly off the Fulham Road.
Emma Hanks of Douglas & Gordon points to Lillieville Road as a particularly popular address: ‘It’s incredibly rare for properties to come up for sale,’ she says. ‘The road has two architectural styles – on the left, five-bedroom Victorian terraces and on the right, semi-detached houses which are almost twice as wide’.
While property is priced favourably in comparison to neighbouring Chelsea, prices are on the rise, as Anne Soutry of Knight Frank notes. ‘Fulham has seen a sharp rise in values since November, in the region of 15% in some areas,’ she says, which she puts down to a shortage of stock and rising buyer levels, adding that ‘the number of buyers moving from Kensington & Chelsea has increased from 39% to 50% in the last 12 months’.
Jamie Lester of Haus Properties also reports strong demand, ‘with several properties going to sealed bids’, while Tom de Winton of John D. Wood has seen increased demand around the £2m mark in comparison to last year, ‘a result of the mansion tax being mothballed and the weak pound giving a further discount to international buyers in 2013’.
Anthony Bell of Kinleigh Folkard & Hayward reports that demand in Fulham is, in fact, at an ‘all-time high’, with buyers being ‘younger than you might expect, with many young professionals buying with the help of trust funds or the bank of mum and dad’.
This is a trend Ivor Campbell-Davys of Strutt & Parker has also noticed, commenting that buyers ‘tend to be parents buying for their children, or investors. Those people with cash in the bank, earning them little interest’. He also comments that the market is ‘becoming increasingly segmented by the stamp duty thresholds’ and that buyers are considering ‘areas which only three years ago would have been to the periphery, like the latter Alphabet Streets or Sands End’.
‘The biggest issue at the moment seems to be the disparity between what buyers want to pay and what sellers are expecting to receive,’ says Glynn Gibb of Savills, adding that while ‘best in class’ properties are ‘fetching high prices (up to £1,200/sq.ft), these are the exception’.
On the lettings side, Georgina Cartwright of Strutt & Parker reports that ‘smaller houses and flats are in particular demand’, adding that ‘buy-to-let investors should focus on one to three-bedroom units and be conscious that location and specification are key’.