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South Kensington: A Buying Agent’s Brief Guide

The Neighbourhood

South Kensington is one of London’s most architecturally impressive areas, known for its grand white stucco townhouses and red brick blocks . It is perhaps the quintessential London neighbourhood people envisage before visiting London.

SW7 is situated between Hyde Park to the North and Fulham Road to the South. South Kensington and Kensington are often used interchangeably. Confusingly, ‘North Kensington’ is a separate area entirely, one hour’s walk away and North of Notting Hill!

Kensington is particularly popular with families owing to its large selection of schools. There is also a long-standing French community with the Lycée Français Charles de Gaulle school and Institut Français both in the area.

Cultural attractions are plentiful. Close to Hyde Park are two of London’s best museums –  The Natural History Museum and the Victoria & Albert Museum.  Slightly further North is The Royal Albert Hall and Royal College of Music. The Design Museum and Science Museum are also nearby.

Hyde Park and Kensington Park Gardens are within easy walking distance.

Gloucester Road (Piccadilly Line) and South Kensington (Circle & District Lines) stations give easy access to central London. Westminster and The West End are both particularly easy to reach.

The Market

South Kensington is one of London’s most established prime markets. Average price per square ft is in the region of £1,500. Best-in-class homes often sell for more than double this off market. Large lateral flats are popular with overseas buyers and can outperform average houses.

SW7 has numerous garden squares surrounded by 6/7 storey townhouses, including Courtfield and Ennismore Gardens. Most are converted into flats. The presence or absence of a lift has a significant impact on the value of the upper floor flats. Access to the area’s many private garden squares commands a hefty premium and there are sometimes lengthy waiting lists for new residents.

Compared to other areas of central London where mansion blocks have been underinvested in over the years, the majority here are in good condition with well presented communal areas.

The standout address is perhaps The Boltons, a lens-shaped road featuring large detached houses with sizeable gardens. The rarity of both in central London can push up prices to circa £4,000 per sq ft. Other prime addresses include Phillimore Gardens running parallel to Holland Park and Thurloe Square overlooked by the V&As stunning central tower. Kensington is also home to some of London’s most picturesque mews streets including Stanhope Mews South and Kynance Mews.

Even when compared to neighbouring areas in Prime Central London, the number of new build developments is very limited as RBKC’s planning policy is quite restrictive. This currently gives buyers the reassurance that they are buying a very limited commodity.

If you are looking for a South Kensington buying agent or simply want a market overview, please get in touch with us today for a no-obligation 30 minute consultation at [email protected] or +44(0)208 0880 522.

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