Just what is prime?
What prime markets are and where they are located can be subjective. We have defined prime markets across all parts of the country according to a set of objective measures.*
We identify the prime city, country, town and suburbs across Great Britain. And in London, we separate prime central London from other prime areas of the capital.
The concept of prime central London is a relatively recent one. There have always been pockets of London that have attracted the wealthy but historically these were evenly spread across North, West and central London. Towards the end of the 20th century however, as the city grew, they became more concentrated to become the prime central London we recognise today.
Much of the 20th century wasn’t kind to today’s prime parts of the capital, central or otherwise. The 1930’s depression hit wealth hard and many central London mansions that had struggled to sell were demolished to make way for smaller homes or businesses. It took until the 1970s for the tide to turn, as small office floorplates fell out of fashion and houses that had become offices were turned back into homes.
Over the last 20 years the most prestigious parts of London have become home to growing accumulations of wealth. That wealth has gradually spilled over from a few exclusive streets in the centre into whole neighbourhoods. Notting Hill, Islington and parts of Fulham were undesirable places in the 1970s but are now some of the most sought-after areas.
During the last couple of decades, the prime areas of central London have doubled in size, growing from 10 to 20 square miles. And despite what has been a tough couple of years for the prime London market, there are few signs to suggest its structural growth is slowing. In similar fashion to almost every other world city, the appetite for luxury central living among the wealthy is growing.
Significant property wealth accumulated in prime London is spreading to nearby neighbourhoods, deep into the commuter belt and even beyond. Put simply, many Londoners are realising gains from their homes in the capital and buying elsewhere.
To download the full report, click here: http://www.hamptons.co.uk/publications/focus-reports/