Why buy a house in East London

East London has gone through a lot of transformation in the past 20 years.

Although once known for being one of the poorest areas in the city, the east end is now buzzing with new businesses and plays home to lots of young professionals and creatives.

This part of the capital is famous for its nightlife, its highly rated restaurants, bars, and array of independent shops and coffee spots.

While more popular areas are still quite expensive, it’s a lot cheaper to buy in parts of East London than it is in other parts of London.

  1. The green spaces and parks like Victoria Park, Clissold Park, Hackney Marshes and London Fields

  2. The nightlife in areas like Shoreditch, Dalston and Hackney Wick

  3. Shopping in Stratford’s Westfield or in Shoreditch 

  4. Walks along the picturesque Regents Canal

  5. The modern developments in Canary Wharf, Royal Docks and Stratford

  6. The creative scene in Shoreditch and Hackney

  7. The amazing restaurants and bars

  8. The bustling markets like Victoria Park market, Spitalfields, Columbia Road flower market and Exmouth market

  9. The up and coming residential areas like Walthamstow, Mile End, Whitechapel

  10. The brilliant transport links

East London

East London property

The east end has everything from bright and sleek new build flats to well preserved Victorian houses.

East London attracts many younger home buyers due to areas where home prices are relatively low.

Demand for rental homes is high in areas like Hackney, Tower Hamlets, Newham and Waltham Forest.

It’s expected that demand for homes in East London will continue to increase, especially when the Crossrail fully launches in 2022.¹

East London house prices

Due to the increasing popularity of East London, house prices there have gone up considerably in the past decade. 

House prices in East London have shot up by 73% from £287,719 in 2010 to £498,852 in 2021.²

However, despite the rising property prices, it’s still the cheapest compared to North, South and West London.

The cost of living in East London

The cost of living in London is always going to be quite high when compared to the rest of the UK.

Here are some examples of what things cost in London³:  

  • combo meal in a fast food restaurant – £6

  • cappuccino – £3.56

  • pint of beer in the pub – £5.72

  • gym membership per month – £52

  • cinema ticket – £13

East London caters to a blend of lifestyles and budgets. See a few examples below.

  • Shoreditch has a variety of boutiques and concept stores

  • Stoke Newington has a Whole Foods and other organic food shops

  • Clerkenwell has highly rated fine dining restaurants

  • Dalston and Stratford Westfield are ideal spots for high street shopping 

  • Shoreditch plays host to Rich Mix cinema, where you can get a ticket for £6

  • There are lots of affordable food markets all over East London

Where to live in East London

This part of East London is more than just a hub for nightlife. 

Shoreditch is a vibrant and exciting area filled with independent stores and cafes, cool creative agencies and studios, as well as some of London’s most sought after food spots.

This corner of the city is ideal for those who love to shop vintage, as there are a whole range of vintage clothes shops dotted up and down Brick Lane.

The musically inclined can find Rough Trade East here, as well as other smaller record stores.

As it’s such a popular area, prices here can be steeper than in other parts of East London.

For anyone after sleek, modern apartments and a city skyline, Canary Wharf is the place to be.

This part of London boasts an array of luxury new builds, great connections into the city centre and plenty of shopping, drinking and dining options.

This area is mostly abuzz during the working week, but on weekends is a cool place to head out for casual food or drinks.

For a slightly quieter but still cool part of East London, head to Stoke Newington.

It’s a great place for couples ready to move from the buzz of places like Shoreditch or Hackney in search of somewhere quieter and more spacious.

Besides playing host to a selection of cafes, pubs and restaurants, the good schools in Stoke Newington make it an appealing area for families.

Victorian houses are particularly popular here.

Walthamstow offers up a historic village feel while also playing host to lots of shops, pubs, restaurants and cafes.   

It’s home to people from all kinds of backgrounds but is growing in popularity amongst people in their mid 20s and early 30s. 

First time buyers might find they can get more for their money somewhere like Walthamstow where you can get a 2 bed terraced house for the same price as a 2 bed flat in Shoreditch or Stoke Newington.³

It’s an ideal location for commuters as it’s well connected by the Victoria and Overground lines.

First time buyers in East London

First time buyers may gravitate towards buying in East London due to the lower prices compared to West or North for example.

It’s a good spot for first time buyers as there’s a large community of young professionals in areas like Hackney and Tower Hamlets. It’s also easy and convenient to commute into central London from these spots.

The most affordable part of East London is Bexley, so this could be a good place to look for first time buyers.

Buy to lets in East London

Like much of the city, East London is popular with people looking to rent, which makes it a good place to own a buy to let.

People renting here tend to be young professionals, couples and families. 

According to Totally Money, rental properties in E12 offer the best yield for buy to let landlords.

They can expect an average of 6.04% return.

New builds in East London

Many first time buyers in London might opt for new builds as they can use the Help to Buy scheme to help them afford a home.

Areas with lots of snazzy new build developments include the Royal Docks and Canary Wharf. 

Find out more about buying a new build in our guide.

Looking at pictures

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¹ Savills: Young, affordable and undersupplied: why the East London housing market is set to grow

² Foxtons: East London

³ The Standard: The 10 top-selling London areas where first-time buyers are flocking this winter

⁴ Foxtons:10 cheapest places to buy a property in London

⁵ Totally Money: UK Buy-to-Let Yield Map 2019/2020