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Culture, community spirit and top-notch schools make this London borough attractive to families (Picture: Alamy/ Metro.co.uk)
Perched between the Thames to the west and the Richmond Park to the north, Kingston goes from strength to strength.
The town’s secondary schools are legendary, it’s a major shopping destination, has tons of green space and the commute’s pretty good too.
In its latest Happy at Home report, Rightmove found the wider borough — also called Kingston upon Thames — to be the third happiest place to live in London (after Richmond and Bromley) based on friendliness, community spirit, outdoor space, cultural and sports activities.
Kingston upon Thames is one of the happiest boroughs in London (Picture: Alamy Stock Photo)
Local housing mostly dates from the Victorian era onwards, encompassing terraces, villas, modern blocks and conversions.
‘Kingston Town has seen a massive uplift in the past two years thanks to buyers coming in from the inner city’ says Conor Hayes, manager of Dexters Kingston. ‘We’re seeing houses sell extremely quickly.
A one-bedroom apartment starts at around £250,000, a small cottage will set you back around £400,000, and for a larger family home you’re looking at about £550,000+.’
What’s new in the area?
Crown Collection is the latest and final phase to launch at St George’s Royal Exchange, set around the listed Old Post Office and Telephone Exchange.
The 67 Manhattan (studio), one, two and three-bed apartments are arranged over 15 storeys, and each is fitted with top-end Miele appliances, and has access to facilities such a private cinema room, a gym, meeting room and a 24-hour concierge.
St George’s Exchange it set around the old Post Office and Telephone Exchange
Prices in the Crown Collection currently start from £842,500 for a two-bed and from £819,000 in earlier phase Richardson House.
Only one, three-bed apartment is left at 26 Cromwell Road, a small development a short walk from Kingston station.
Filled with natural light and offered with Help to Buy, it’s £595,000, via Hamptons.
A bright and airy three-bed is still available at 26 Cromwell Road
Help to Buy is also on offer on each of the one, two and three-bed apartments at Fairview’s Kingston East in nearby New Malden.
They start from £369,000 and purchasers reserving selected plots before the end of February will receive £10,000 towards their deposit.
If you’re hoping to utilise shared ownership, your nearest option is South Place in Surbiton, about a mile from central Kingston, where the first 15 one, two and three-bed apartments have just been launched.
All have a private balcony or terrace, and there’s a communal courtyard, from £147,000 for a 40% share of £367,500, through Red Loft.
Smart new homes at South Place are launching in nearby Surbiton
Kingston Council and development partner Countryside have planning approval to regenerate the Cambridge Road Estate, 2,170 homes in total.
Phase 1, consisting of 452 homes, is due to begin this summer. And Unilever is building its global HQ in the town, bringing in 2,000 jobs by winter 2023/24.
Everything potential buyers need to know about Kingston upon Thames
Average house price: £788,573
Average rent: £1,436 pcm
Council tax (Band D): £2,056.47
Commuting time to Zone 1: from 30 mins to Waterloo
Annual Travelcard: £2,708
Amenities: ★★★★★ 75 shops including John Lewis and Bentalls department store in the Bentall Centre, which will soon be welcoming a new Curzon cinema, eateries and children’s activity area; more shopping in Eden Walk, the High Street and Market Place; daily market; waterside pubs and restaurants; bowling, Odeon cinema and escape rooms in The Rotunda; Rose Theatre; Kingston Museum; Kingston First, the town centre’s Business Improvement District, runs regular events in the including free family activities during the school holidays.
Open space: ★★★★☆ Fairfield Park; Canbury Gardens; Latchmere Recreation Ground; Richmond Park; Hampton Court Park and Bushy Park across Kingston Bridge
Schools: ★★★★★ GCSE and A-level results are well above average Almost all state primaries and secondaries outstanding or good; The Tiffin Girls’ School and Tiffin School (boys) are high-achieving grammars
Crime: Far below average
Who lives there? Very popular with families; almost two thirds of residents are under 44
Famous faces: Stormzy lives in Kingston
Schools, crime and house price data supplied by Zoopla.
What can I afford on the property ladder in Kingston upon Thames?
First rung: Bright and modern flat in a characterful Victorian building
This one-bed fully renovated ground floor conversion has an all-in-one kitchen/living/dining room, and a walled patio garden.
A step up: Beautifully presented family home
Located off Fairfield park, this three-bed Victorian semi has a bay-windowed living room and a dining room opening on to a garden.
Top rung: This grand house has come a long way (Picture: Dimitrios Sofianopoulos)
A true one-off, this 12-bed Tudor mansion was built near Colchester then dismantled brick by brick in 1910 and rebuilt on Coombe Hill.
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