Whether you live in London or are thinking of moving to the capital, it’s a good time to consider alternatives to living centrally. With house prices and rental rates being shaken up across the city, the outer zones have plenty to offer. We showcase the best places to live in London zones 5-6, ranking the top scorers from our residents’ reviews.
The COVID effect: Londoners drifting outwards
The ‘new normal’ of living though the pandemic continues to change people’s priorities about where they live. Our 2021 National Build to Rent Report found that tenants rated zones 5 and 6 significantly higher for location during 2020 than in the previous year.
The need for more space – particularly outside space – in London is causing buyers and renters to look towards the outer zones. With remote working more common now as well, being in central London isn’t as important as it once was.
With houses up to £700,000 cheaper in zone 6 compared to zone 1, outer zones’ prices are appealing. At the same time, they still offer the ability to commute into central London when needed. This, combined with growing investment in areas within zones 5-6 is causing buyers to take note.
Zone 6 went from a 9% bump in the number of property purchases in September 2019 (compared to 2018), to a whopping 108% increase between 2019-2020. Zone 5 wasn’t far behind, going from an 8% rise in 2019 to 103% in 2020. In October 2020, the average asking price for properties in zones 5 and 6 was 474,928 and £486,586 respectively.
London property market analysts are predicting that demand for property in the central zones will return, but it’s hard to say when. For now, zones 5 and 6 are the ‘new favourite’ for house hunters looking to access London’s quieter side.
The 10 best places to live in London zones 5-6 according to residents
These 10 best zone 5 and 6 locations is made up of the new homes developments with the highest overall star ratings. Click on any of the listed developments below, and you’ll see its rating. There’s also a breakdown of how residents rate various categories, and the full list of reviews.
All of these developments average more than 4.1 stars across dozens if not hundreds of individual reviews. Clearly, the outer zones of London are getting a lot of positive attention and residents are increasingly happy there.
Top of the table for our zones 5-6 list is Homesgate Place in Hayes (zone 5). With 183 high quality 1-2-bedroom apartments and studios alongside a mix of 1-5-bedroom houses, there’s plenty of choice to suit different needs and budgets. Residents say that there’s already a real community vibe to the development, reinforced by the easy access to communal areas and local amenities. The location is a key selling point, as Homesgate Place is a short walk away from Barra Hall Park, with good rail and bus links in place.
Read reviews and details of Homesgate Place, UB3
Another Hayes top scorer, be:here Hayes is part of the Old Vinyl Factory development, which means residents have great access to local restaurants, leisure amenities and a top-notch music venue. Residents like how sunny, open and green the development is, with lots of communal facilities (including a popular rooftop terrace) making a big difference. The management team are roundly praised in reviewers’ comments for their outstanding service during lockdown.
Read reviews and details of be:here Hayes, UB3
At number 3 we have Bradstowe House, located in the heart of Harrow (zone 5). Its central location and light, airy interior design get a big thumbs up from residents. The same goes for the gym, lounge and range of small extra services and facilities.
Read reviews and details of Bradstowe House, HA1
Heading down to Croydon (zone 5), we have the short-term letting scheme The Quarters Croydon, which offers residents a stylish and convenient base in this thriving South London suburb. There are 151 high-specification studios at the development, with Croydon station only a 4-minute walk away. Trains reach London Bridge in just 14 minutes, while Gatwick Airport is also easily accessible.
Read reviews and details of The Quarters Croydon, CR0
Chipping Barnet’s Brook Valley Gardens rounds out our zone 5 developments. Its residents love the different green spaces, park, community centre and nursery on site. They also enjoy its many eco-friendly factors, as the development has plenty of solar panels, water butts and electric vehicle charging stations dotted around. It also sits just a short walk from High Barnet station, giving direct access to central London within 20 minutes.
Read reviews and details of Brook Valley Gardens, EN5
Top of our zone 6 listings is West Plaza, located in Ashford. Situated only a 12-minute walk away from Ashford station, the development offers residents great rail connections via South Western Railway services. With its quality design and build, multiple gated entrances for ease of use, and well-kept gardens and flowerbeds, residents claim that it’s easy to feel at home here.
Read reviews and details of West Plaza Rental Only, TW19
Kingston’s The Royal Gallery combines convenience with homeliness, according to our resident reviewers. The communal gardens are a hit, and there’s a good range of different sized flats, all with reliably high-quality design and build. It’s the management team that really get the praise from residents though, as they are routinely complimented on their conduct and can-do attitude.
Read reviews and details of The Royal Gallery, KT2
Kings Park is a Countryside residential development in the London Borough of Havering (zone 6). The site is just a short walk to the local station, Harold Wood, giving residents access to the Great Eastern Main Line that reaches Liverpool Street in under an hour, and Upminster Bridge is the nearest Underground station (District line). Residents say that the community has come together well since Kings Park opened, and that the development offers a good mix of space, convenience and quiet.
Read reviews and details of Kings Park, RM3
Number 9 on our list is located in the heart of Uxbridge (zone 6). Pinpoint is a Build to Rent development with 1-3-bedroom flats, many with private balconies, underfloor heating, and various other attractive features. Residents like the communal gardens and amenities as well as the expanding security features that make the development feel safe. Pinpoint is less than a 10-minute walk away from Uxbridge High Street and Uxbridge Underground station, which has access to both the Piccadilly and Metropolitan lines.
Read reviews and details of Pinnpoint, UB10
And finally at number 10 we have Kingston Riverside, a Redrow Homes development located in Kingston-upon-Thames. Its 347 apartments, ranging from 1-3 bedrooms, enjoy exceptional views of the River Thames and the development is within close proximity to lots of local amenities, such as The Eden Walk Shopping Centre and Clarence Street, with its array of uniquely charming shops.
Read reviews and details of Kingston Riverside, KT2
Want to live in the outer zones but fancy being a little closer to the centre of the action? We also have a guide on the best developments in zone 4. Otherwise, our ‘Top Rated’ section has plenty of other guides to specific London boroughs and areas.
HomeViews provides verified resident reviews of the UK’s housing developments. We’re working with developers, landlords and the Government to recognise high performers and help to improve standards in the built environment.