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Invest near Crossrail? It’s not always a fast track to returns

It didn’t take long, but the gloss has already begun to come off the hugely expensive new Crossrail service in London.

The latest research by London property agency Benham and Reeves has revealed that the appeal amongst homebuyers could be diminishing, as no fewer than 20 Crossrail stations have seen the annual rate of house price growth within their respective postcodes trail that of the wider local authorities they are located within. 

However, the research shows that overall Crossrail house prices have climbed by 2.4 per cent over the last year, marginally higher than the 1.9 per cent increase seen across the wider local authorities home to a Crossrail station.


Within the network, the best performing Crossrail station over the last year has been Romford. Not only have house prices within the RM1 postcode increased by 14 per cent year on year - the highest rate of growth of all stations - the postcode has also outperformed the wider borough of Havering by 9.6 per cent. 

Liverpool Street, Forest Gate, Farringdon, Maidenhead and Chadwell Heath Crossrail station areas have also outstripped their wider postcodes, but the reverse has happened in many other locations.

For example, house prices within the E14 postcode, home to the Canary Wharf Crossrail station, have fallen by 17 per cent in the last year, while Whitechapel’s E1 postcode has seen a only a one per cent reduction. As a result, both Crossrail stations trail the wider borough of Tower Hamlets where the average house price has increased by 10 per cent annually. 

Property values surrounding no less than 18 other Crossrail stations have also underperformed when compared to their wider local authorities - Gidea Park, Acton Main Line, Southall, Woolwich, Custom House, Twyford, Reading, Tottenham Court Road, Stratford, Maryland, Langley, Abbey Wood, Slough, Burnham, Goodmayes, Seven Kings, Manor Park and Harold Wood.

The director of Benham and Reeves, Marc von Grundherr, comments: “Crossrail was so hotly anticipated for such a prolonged period of time that house prices rocketed across the line as homebuyers looked to secure a property within close proximity to the game changing transport link. 

“However, it’s fair to say that since launch the shine has perhaps faded across many pockets of the network now, as many Londoners realise that their existing transport routes remain the most convenient way to traverse the capital. 

“So although Crossrail property values as a whole are still standing fairly strong, there are as many as 20 stations where property values have trailed the wider area over the last year. 

“Canary Wharf has been the worst hit in this respect and with HSBC making the decision to relocate to the city, we expect demand from working professionals to fall further. House prices in Whitechapel’s E1 postcode have also trailed the wider borough of Tower Hamlets but, of course, the flip side to this underperformance is that it presents buyers and investors with a great opportunity to purchase. 

“We are currently seeing very strong demand for rental homes within the Whitechapel area and it currently ranks as one of our top five rental hotspots across the city. As a result, rental values are climbing and this is providing some extremely favourable yields.”


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