Buying in SE1

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Monday 19 March 2007 11.39am
Looking for some advice on buying a home in SE1!

After a number of years abroad I'm moving back to London next year, accompanied by partner and two cats. As I'll be working on Whitehall and my partner's a consultant who will be hoping to work in the City, the Waterloo area is an obvious place to look.

Our budget will probably be in the region of max. 300,000. We'd like at least 2 bedrooms and if there's any outdoor space (even just a balcony) that would be a big plus. I'm looking at Metro Central Heights, but has anyone got any other suggestions?

Also, what's it like to cycle in the area? Could I reasonably get to work by bike?

Thanks! Kit
Monday 19 March 2007 11.52am
I work in Westminster, and I know this is going to sound disloyal to the SE1 community, but in terms of value for money at the moment I'm a big fan of SE16. Elephant is also reasonable, and may be a sound investment with the upcoming regeneration, though not currently very pleasant in certain parts / times of day. I did try to live in MCH but it fell through, so I'm not an implacable opponent of that part of the world.

The Tower Bridge Area would be good for a commute to the city, turning it from a long walk to a short one, and certainly avoiding the Northern Line situation, otherwise the redevelopment as far out as Canada Water offers some bargains and is 13 minutes from Westminster by tube, and two stops from London Bridge for the City.

As for cycling, I gave up in fear when I moved to London, but once you get to the right side of Elephant it'd probably be a relatively simple ride and fairly safe by London standards, I would say Lambeth Road, Bridge and Millbank rather than Westminster Bridge, but both would work.

Anyway, good luck.
Monday 19 March 2007 12.20pm
THink also about SE17 (just around the corner from the Elephant, in the Walworth Road). Slightly cheaper than SE1, lots of shops and East Street Market - not so many smart boutiques but lots of things you really need. I live in Metro Central, very convenient it must be said, from a transport point of view. Disgusting service charges though!
Monday 19 March 2007 12.38pm
Kennington (SE11 is also good). Flats in places like Gilbert Road may well be within your budget. Quite, and a short walk to the Elephant. Also the Corporation of London Estate (William Blake) estate by Lambeth North. Lots of right to buy, well maintained, and really central.

Also have a word with local estate agent, Alan Fraser. He specialises in cheaper properties, and has a reputation for knowing the market and being straightforward.
KM
Monday 19 March 2007 1.22pm
Don't want to put you off but my 1 bedroom flat in SE1 has just been valued at 295K! Daft isn't it.
Monday 19 March 2007 2.09pm
We've just sold our 2 bed 2 bath in Metro for very slightly under the asking price of 299k, it sold very quickly and we had a lot of offers (touch wood it is going through at the moment). My advice would be to see as many as possible and be in a position to move quickly.
Monday 19 March 2007 10.14pm
To echo what others have said, 300k is not a lot of money to get 2 bedrooms, let alone some outside space, in SE1. I presume you have tried looking at the main property portals? -findaproperty.com, primelocation.com, rightmove.co.uk. These are very useful and, even though they may be slightly out of date (ie. properties have already been sold despite being listed) give you a great overview of the market.

In my part of SE1, South Bermondsey, houses are selling in days (the last 2 bed house went for 330k within 4 days) so the advice to be ready to move is spot on.

I am not sure what the prices are like, but have a look at bermondseyspa.co.uk - all these flats have outside space I think.

Good luck!

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