You don’t have to be a millionaire to live in England’s capital. There are plenty of affordable one and two
bedroom properties located less than a 30-minute journey from the city centre. If a property is bought in the
right area and some simple steps are taken to increase its value, it could be a very successful investment
Where to buy
Chances are you are not looking for a multi-million pound residence in one of London’s exclusive areas such
as Kensington, Primrose Hill, Notting Hill, Mayfair or Chelsea. If instead you are looking for an affordable
property, consider Southgate or Enfield in north London. West London has a reputation for being smart and
sedate, but affordable properties can be found in Acton, Shepherd’s Bush and Perivale in Ealing. If you want
to be north of the River, consider Wood Green or Tottenham. East London is the most densely populated of
London’s sub regions, and if you want to live in an area that is celebrated for its multi-cultural mix and its
vibrant nightlife, try Newham, Leyton or Beckton in Newham Hill. Colliers Wood is in south London, and
Sydenham, New Eltham, Charlton and Anerley are located in southeast London. Get in touch with some
local Estate Agents and have a look at what you can afford according to your budget.
Extending a property can add value, but it is not always possible due to regulations, or you might find that
you are unlikely to get your money back when you sell. It all depends on how much your property is worth, or
for how much properties in the area are selling. Find out exactly how much you can reasonably expect to get
before you spend money on structural alterations or improvements.
At the very least, when you want to sell, you can make a powerful first impression by tidying up the front and
outside of your house. Fix the roof and consider what structural repairs are necessary, and then deal with the
aesthetics. Clear out gutters and drains, clean the windows, cut back foliage, weed the garden and jet wash
the drive or paving slabs. Remember that many prospective buyers make a decision about a property within
the first few minutes, so aim to make the property as appealing as possible around the entrance. Hanging
baskets, flowers and shrubs will brighten up the outside, and sweeping plants and a pleasant, fresh or floral
scent will help to make a good impression as a buyer enters the property.
Making your home lighter will create an illusion of space, which will help your home to sell. Clean the
windows inside, draw back curtains or replace them with modern blinds or classic poplar shutters, clear
clutter from the rooms, and remove as many personal items and effects as possible. Install brighter lights
and decorate in light, neutral colours. The aim is for a prospective buyer to walk around the property and
imagine living there; in their minds’ eye, they are picturing where they will put their furnishings when it is their
home. Clean or replace carpets and consider varnishing wooden floors. Installing extra electrical sockets and
making the property feel more secure with a light sensor can help to achieve a sale, as can reducing the
properties’ environmental impact by insulating the loft or cavity walls and making it more energy efficient.
Research and make enquiries about affordable property in London that is within easy reach of where you
want to be, whether it be travelling by Tube, train, car or public transport. To ensure you receive the best
return on the property, keep it in good repair – and make it as appealing as possible to a buyer when the time
comes to sell.