Priced out of the city? The UK’s top commuter hotspots are revealed

We have good news if you've bought in Swanley, Dursley or Bromsgrove!

Living in the heart of a big city has its upsides. The culture, the nightlife, takeaway pizza available 24 hours a day… but it also has downsides, like astronomical house prices.

So if you’re struggling to get on the property ladder in your favourite city, it makes sense to look further afield. It also makes sense to move to a spot that’s going to give you a good return on your investment.

Zoopla has studied house prices in commuter towns within an hour’s train travel of the UK’s 10 largest cities, and come up with a list of those showing the biggest growth. Zoopla has also worked out how long it would take that growth to offset the cost of a travel card into the city centre. Here are the top three hotspots.

Related: The British towns where you can get the most house for your money

3. Bromsgrove, near Birmingham


As you’ll see below, Birmingham’s commuter belt dominates the top 10 commuter hotspots. But while Belper, Atherstone and Warwick all feature, it’s Bromsgrove that comes out on top.

Only 30 minutes by train to the city centre, it’s shown 9.61 per cent growth in property prices in the year from December 18th 2016 to December 18th 2017. Buy a property here, its rising value will cover the cost of your season ticket in 16 days.

You can get the keys to this pretty two-bedroom end-of-terrace house in Bromsgrove for £225,000. It’s beautifully decorated, with period features throughout.

2. Dursley, Bristol


Bristol often tops polls of the most expensive place to live outside of London – even properties in suburbs like Westbury-on-Trym and Henleaze are highly sought after. But interns of growth, the biggest hotspot is Dursley – a town 25 miles north-east of the South West’s biggest city.

It’s experienced a boom in property prices of 9.71 per cent (£26,339) over the past year. Commuters could pay off the cost of their hour commute in just over a month (32 days).

This four-bed detached new-build home in Dursley, Gloucestershire is perfect for a family. It’s on the market for £349,999.

This is a must-read: Top 10 tips for getting on the property ladder in 2018

1. Swanley, Kent


Nearby Chislehurst may be prettier, and Bexley and Tonbridge have also shown good house-price growth in the past 12 months, but Swanley comes out when it comes to improving property prices. They jumped by 10.78 per cent (£36,484) in 2017.

Based on those numbers, commuters living here could expect to offset their £2,500 season ticket to central London in measly 25 days.e also seen significant growth over the past 12 months.

Jasmine cottage, a three-bedroom home in Swanley, is a bit of a fixer-upper, but has huge potential. It has an asking price of £550,00.

Now here’s the top ten list in full

Top 10 commuter towns by property value growth

1. Swanley, London

Average property price December 2017 £375,066
Growth rate year-on-year 10.78 per cent
Time it could take to offset annual travel fare (days) 25

2. Dursley, Bristol

Average property price December 2017 £297,581
Growth rate year-on-year 9.71 per cent
Time it could take to offset annual travel fare (days) 32

3. Bromsgrove, Birmingham

Average property price December 2017 £301,384
Growth rate year-on-year 9.61 per cent
Time it could take to offset annual travel fare (days) 16

4. Berkhamsted, London

Average property price December 2017 £724,194
Growth rate year-on-year 9.18 per cent
Time it could take to offset annual travel fare (days) 23

5. Blaydon-On-Tyne, Newcastle

Average property price December 2017 £150,377
Growth rate year-on-year 9.09 per cent
Time it could take to offset annual travel fare (days) 16

6. Belper, Nottingham

Average property price December 2017 £252,308
Growth rate year-on-year 8.94 per cent
Time it could take to offset annual travel fare (days) 30

7. Ilkley, Leeds

Average property price December 2017 £404,994
Growth rate year-on-year 8.52 per cent
Time it could take to offset annual travel fare (days) 14

8. Atherstone, Birmingham

Average property price December 2017 £236,734
Growth rate year-on-year 8.26 per cent
Time it could take to offset annual travel fare (days) 40

9. Warwick, Birmingham

Average property price December 2017 £383,488
Growth rate year-on-year 8.18 per cent
Time it could take to offset annual travel fare (days) 19

10. Bingley, Leeds

Average property price December 2017 £231,536
Growth rate year-on-year 7.91 per cent
Time it could take to offset annual travel fare (days) 23

More property news: Looking to invest in a buy-to-let? These university towns will make you the biggest profits

‘An easy commute into the office is often very near the top of the property wish list for those looking to move home,’ says Zoopla’s Lawrence Hall. ‘These figures show just how valuable it can be to live within easy reach of a city centre.

‘Towns with good transport links into Birmingham have performed particularly well in 2017 due to continued demand in the region, which offers better value compared to the south of the country.’


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