Cheap is not a word you can use about any property in London, but one thing is sure; on our side of the water there is a massive difference between highest and lowest prices. There are different ways you can measure prices: actual sold prices or current asking prices. Sold prices are always four months behind because of the time lag in data being recorded by the Land Registry, while asking prices do not necessarily translate into selling prices, so treat with caution. Also, prices are averages, so may hide big differences, even within the same postal district.
The amount of data out there about the housing market is truly mind-boggling, but we’ve done a bit of boggling for you to reveal the cheapest areas to buy a flat in South London (London postal districts only). Firstly, the cheapest one bed flat we could find, sold in the last year was in South Norwood SE25 at £56,000, with second place coming in at £56,250 in Woolwich SE18. For the rest of our survey we’ve gone with current asking price average for one-beds: the general lack of property on the market, combined with the easing of credit, mean that properties are currently selling at, or very near, the asking price.
1. Abbey Wood SE2 Zone 4 £135,500
Split between the London Boroughs of Bexley and Greenwich, Abbey Wood is connected by its national rail station to London Bridge (27 mins) with trains every 10 mins. It has a mixture of private and social housing, but expect prices to rise sharply as the coming of Crossrail in 2018 gets nearer.
2. Woolwich and Plumstead SE18 Zone 3/4 £140,425
At first glance it appears that these two districts in LB Greenwich are well served with rail links, being on the same line as Abbey Wood and with a DLR station at Woolwich, but the lines stick close to the river and many areas are a long way from any station. Woolwich is also the location of a Crossrail station so expect the same as above. Lots of new build going on near Woolwich centre.
3. Thamesmead SE28 Zone 4 £148,167
You’d never come across this place by accident, being right by the river in the farthest corner of south-east London, also split between LBs Bexley and Greenwich. Much of it is a social housing project from the 60s/70s, but lots of new build going on now. It’s got no rail service of any kind and main roads pass it by – it’s probably the least connected district in the whole of London. Nearest station – Abbey Wood.
4. Eltham and Mottingham SE9 Zone 4 £148,993
I must admit to being surprised at this one, as it’s mainly an area of private housing and has some quite upmarket areas. It’s also reasonably well-connected with four rail stations. Distance could be an explanation, taking over 30 mins to central London.
5. South Norwood SE25 Zone 4 £159,919
This area, part of LB Croydon, is tucked in between Crystal Palace and Croydon itself. Largely an area of late 19th/early 20th century housing, it has one big advantage – its rail connections from Norwood Junction, with frequent trains to London Bridge (fastest 15 mins) and its London Overground service to the City (Shoreditch High St. 30mins).
Other areas which came close in price were SE12 – Lee and Grove Park, SE6 – Catford and SE20 – Penge and Anerley. Finally, if you’re flat-hunting, SLB wishes you the very best of luck!