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Cost of culture: Homes near heritage sites rocket in value

On the 70th anniversary of UNESCO, the body which awards heritage status, it has been revealed that the longer a place has been a heritage site, the higher the property values in the surrounding area will be.

It’s been reported that the first 10 UK locations to be granted World Heritage Status between 1986 and 1987, including locations such as Bath, Stonehenge and Blenheim Palace, had an average property value of £424,000, compared to just £274,000 for the locations chosen since 2000.

Although buying property close to a World Heritage Site is likely to increase a property’s asking price, this varied across the UK.

Unsurprisingly, the London sites produced the most expensive surrounding house prices. Properties in the proximity of the Palace of Westminster and Westminster Abbey were comfortably the priciest heritage location in the country, with a value of £1.7m.

This research from Zoopla has also revealed that on the other end of the spectrum, the most affordable World Heritage Site to buy a property near was the Orkney Islands. Homes here cost £130,000; 178% less than the average house price near a site, which stands at £362,000.

Saltaire, Bradford’s model village was the most affordable urban world heritage site, closely followed by Liverpool’s Maritime Mercantile City, with house prices standing at £155,000 and £167,000 respectively. 

In July, the Forth Bridge in Scotland became the UK’s latest World Heritage Site, with average homes in the area costing £202,011.

Lawrence Hall of Zoopla commented: “Bradford and Liverpool offer fantastic opportunities for potential buyers to live in cities which have shaped world culture.”

“Research shows that living near to one can add significantly to a property’s value. Looking at the most recent site to gain World Heritage Status, homeowners near the Forth Bridge could expect to see property values increase in future,” he added.

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