Famed for its incredible architecture and historic figures, Chigwell is among the best areas in Essex to live. Dickens himself described it as “the greatest place in the world.” While it’s far less out of the way than it was in Dickensian days, Chigwell retains much of its original character while offering all the comforts and amenities of modern life.
Famous landmarks, easy access to the Tube, and family-friendly features are a few highlights. Curious about investing in Chigwell or making this corner of Essex home? Let’s take a closer look what Chigwell has to offer, as well as the property in Chigwell.
Step back in time: A quick history of Chigwell
Situated a short 19 kilometres from the centre of London, Chigwell is part of the Epping Forest District of Essex.
Formed as a rural farming community before the 10th century and later famed for its mineral springs, this picturesque community is famous for its old village, which is the Chigwell so famously represented by Charles Dickens in his letter to John Forster as well as in his novel Barnaby Rudge: A Tale of the Riots of ‘Eighty.
Ye Olde King’s Head Public House, which Dickens used to form the basis for the novel’s Maypole Inn still stands; at present, it is home to Lord Sugar’s Sheesh, which is a magnificent Turkish restaurant. Discover more restaurants in Chigwell through our Portico Places scheme.
The great news is, this rich history is still evident in Chigwell today. You’ll find many weatherboard cottages and Georgian houses in Chigwell, as well as some old original timbers inside the Retreat, which is now a popular café. Other remarkable houses or buildings that were built in the 17th century and retain many original features include Harsnetts, the Foxhounds, Church House, Turnours, Pettits Hall Lodge, and Woodlands at Chigwell Row.
Other notable landmarks in Chigwell include St. Mary’s Church, Chigwell School founded in 1629, the Buckhurst Hill County School for Boys, and the R.A.F. station, which is built on the site of the ancient Chigwell Hall manor house.
Today, Chigwell is considered to be part of the Greater London Built-Up Area. Along with Buckhurst Hill and Loughton, this metropolitan London locale is an essential component of the affluent area known as the Essex Golden Triangle. Many of the properties in Chigwell are private retreats, protected by impressive fences and electronic gates. So it’s perhaps no surprise therefore that a large number of footballers and their families call Chigwell home - despite Tottenham Hotspur’s move from its previous training grounds.
7 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, High Road, Chigwell, IG7 £1,750,000 (Freehold)
View more houses for sale in Chigwell
The railway from London offers stations at Roding Valley, Grange Hill, and Hainault and the Chigwell Tube station itself is situated a convenient half-mile south of Chigwell Village. It’s a quick 26-minute commute to Liverpool Street, and just 36 minutes from Chigwell to Oxford Circus. Those who prefer to drive can take the M11, which is easily accessed from the village.
Property Opportunities in Chigwell
Most of Chigwell’s homes were built during the last century although the Buckhurst Hill area does offer some 19th century homes to the north of the railway station. Most buildings south of the railway station date from 1920-39. In Chigwell Row, Chigwell Village, Pudding Lane, and Gravel Lane, you’ll find many houses that date from the 17th and 18th centuries.
2 bedrooms, 2 Bathrooms, High Road, Chigwell, IG7 | £550,000 (Share of Freehold)
Apartments, period flats, semi-detached homes, terraced houses, and spacious properties inside the grounds of Claybury Hall and other old manors are among the most desirable opportunities in Chigwell. Many homes were built after train service was established in 1903, and the area saw a building boom between 1920 and 1945. Things changed somewhat in 1945, when The Government placed restrictions on large-scale private building projects, designating Chigwell as an essential part of the Green Belt.
2 bedrooms, 1 Bathroom, Kings Mews, High Road, Chigwell, IG7 | £585,000 (Freehold)
Thanks to its gardens and tree-lined streets as well as proximity to green spaces, excellent schools, and its beautiful, affluent surroundings, Chigwell is popular with families, who find that their money goes far. Family homes, modern new builds, and venerable properties with ample character are among the properties available in Chigwell, along with luxury apartments located a short distance from transportation centres.
3 bedrooms, 2 Bathrooms, Barton Friars, Chigwell, IG7 | £784,000 (Freehold)
Why invest in Essex?
Chigwell and surrounding areas offer proximity to London’s largest open spaces including Epping Forest, Roding Valley Meadows Nature Reserve, and Hainault Forest County Park. Local sports clubs provide opportunities to have fun and keep fit; popular spots include the private Chigwell Golf Club, Chigwell Lawn Tennis Club, and David Lloyd Leisure, which offers tennis courts along with a gym and spa.
Residents enjoy high-end restaurants, sports clubs, boutiques, coffee shops, and other desirable amenities in Chigwell itself; larger shopping centres including the famous Westfield Stratford City Centre are within mere minutes.
The Crossrail delay has benefits for both buyers and landlords
Crossrail, the new train network connecting Essex to London, has been delayed, and will now be available from Autumn 2019. We have already seen significant property price growth from Crossrail, both on the proposed route and in nearby areas, but what does the Crossrail delay mean for property prices?
“Crossrail being put back gives people longer to get into the areas. There will be further growth and this will outpace surrounding areas as people find the added transport links enables them to commute with greater ease from areas that are more affordable to live than Central London.
We are all keen to see Crossrail open as it will bring continued growth in the infrastructure and developments of many of the areas that it will operate through. Therefore, knowing this growth is to come, it’s great that buyers have been given a little more time to get a property at a reasonable price before these areas grow into hotspots.”
With the finishing line in sight, buying now has many benefits for both buyers and landlords. Buyers now have a chance to peruse the market and wait for the right property to come along before completing their purchase before the opening of Crossrail next Autumn, when demand will inevitably rise.
Landlords too will benefit from the extra time. Demand for rental properties over the next 12 months will only improve as commuters in East London are now connected to Gatwick so efficiently and areas like Reading are offering high speed rail access into London.
Wondering where you should buy or invest along the Elizabeth Line? Check out our Crossrail property hotspots.
Nearby Romford is a buy-to-let hotspot, with London’s third highest available rental yield of 5.3%
Chigwell isn’t the only community to consider when looking to invest in Essex properties; Romford is quickly gaining popularity as a top buy-to-let investment hotspot. In part, this is thanks to rapidly rising rental yields, which are likely to improve further once Crossrail becomes fully operational.
Live data from our Rental Yield Map* reiterates this, revealing that Romford actually offers the third highest yield in the whole of the capital at 5.3%. The only locations to offer landlords higher returns are Elm Park (6.3%) and Dagenham (5.7%).
Landlords are also incentivised by soaring property values in Romford: Data revealed that property values increased by a staggering 49% between 2012 and 2017 - and many forecast that property prices around Havering and Romford will increase by another 22 percent by 2022, and that the same time span should offer a handsome 23% increase in rental yields.When Crossrail arrives, we forecast tenant demand to soar, too. But tenants aren’t only here for the easy commute to central London: Romford offers good schools, a fantastic market, a thriving business sector, and an exciting nightlife as well as direct access to Southend on Sea via the A127.
Colchester also promises growth in the buy-to-let sector
Like Romford, Colchester is quickly becoming a property hotspot. According to LendInvest, it topped the charts as Q4’s number one spot for landlords to invest in 2018, and has been trending since 2014.
Famous not only for its easy commutes, Colchester is Britain’s first Roman city. It offers a historic town centre, ample amenities, and easy access to Stansted Airport as well as picturesque villages and towns along the Essex and Suffolk coasts. The city is home to the University of Essex’s Colchester Campus, which accommodates more than 13,000 students who will likely require rental properties.
While home ownership among Colchester’s younger residents is declining, the rental market is booming. Colchester actually topped LendInvest’s latest buy to let index rankings, which cover 105 postcode areas in England and Wales. This popular town in Essex came out with a yield of 3.71%, capital gain of 9.98%, rental price growth of 3.41% and sale volume growth of 2.79%. Impressive. According to Zoopla House Prices, the average price for a home in Colchester stands at a reasonable.
Furthermore, trends indicate continued growth around Colchester and other Essex hotspots. And as these areas continue to gain popularity, there’s likely to be a ripple effect on property prices in Chigwell. Investing soon will allow investors to take advantage of future increases in Essex property values.
If you’re looking for estate agents in Chigwell or would like to speak to our friendly team about our current investment opportunities, give us a call today on 020 8500 1234. Or, if you’d like a free, online property valuation on your current property, head to !www.portico.com/valuation !!
*Data updated daily. Data taken on the 15/07/19.