London is the best place on the planet if you like art, music, food, or want to find a job in your field. But the capital costs a lot as well. Even though the streets aren’t made of gold, you wouldn’t know it from rental prices that are twice as high as the average in England or house prices that have gone up by 3.9% in the last year.
London is a big city, but there are still some great places to live that won’t break the bank and let you spread your feathers without worrying about your mortgage or rent. We used the most recent rental price data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) and house price data from the Land Registry to figure out how different parts of London compare. Below, we list the seven cheapest areas of the city in the capital where you can.
Barking and Dagenham
This East London borough is only nine miles from the city’s center and has the lowest average home price in the capital. Barking and Dagenham homes still cost £46,000 more than the average English home, and rents are 66% more expensive than the average.
That means you’ll lose $5,700 more per year than the average English renter, but those London wages may be worth it. This is particularly true when you can get to the center of London from Barking station in less than an hour.
The barking station is in Zone 4, cheaper than some other zones, and has access to the Hammersmith & City, District, and Overground lines. You’ll also become part of a close-knit community that is much younger and much more diverse than it was previously. In the most recent census, the number of people from ethnic minorities grew by 42%.
On the south side of the river, no other borough can beat Bexley’s average rent price. If you want to rent in London, this is a great place to look. The area also has the second-cheapest house prices in the capital. It shares a low crime rate with Barking and Dagenham and has more than 100 parks and open spaces. A beer stein in Bexleyheath, one of the borough’s main hubs, costs an average of £3.03, much less than the average London pint price of £5.19.
From the east to the south of London, Sutton and Bexley have the same average rent price, which is the lowest. The borough also has the second-best GCSE results in English and math, with 67% of students getting a 5 or higher. Sutton is also concerned about the environment. In July 2019, it declared a climate emergency and promised to become carbon neutral.
It is a beautiful part of London. You can enjoy the fake Tudor style of Cheam or the real Tudor style of Nonsuch Park, which used to surround Henry VIII’s palace and is now just a nice place to go for a walk.
Havering is a borough next to Bexley, Barking, and Dagenham. House prices are a little lower there. The eastern borough of London has a lot of countryside and parkland so that residents can do many free things there.
You can watch wild deer run around in Bedfords Park, go to Havering-Atte-Bower, a village with a lot of history that dates back to the Anglo-Saxon period or walk around the 770-year-old Romford Market. ONS data show that Havering has the fourth-highest satisfaction with life of any London borough. This might be because people there live in a more laid-back way.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) says Croydon has the least anxious people of any London borough, which makes sense. A pint of beer costs an average of £1.99, and if you need to get away from the city, you’re only a stone’s throw from the vast green spaces beyond London.
The borough is also trying to do well. Croydon has been trying to become London’s third official city for a long time, and its current £3.5 billion plan to improve the area should help a lot. The plan is to build new offices, shops, residences, and facilities for young people and people with disabilities.
London’s northernmost borough is the only northern place on this list, but don’t worry. You’re more than an hour from the city center. Zone 5 of Transport for London has cheaper tube fares than some boroughs on this list. It also has a lot of green spaces, like the beautiful Forty Hall estate and Hilly Fields Park, that you can enjoy.
The Turkish and Greek communities in the borough are very active, especially in Southgate, where you can enjoy independent cafes and restaurants that don’t charge the high London prices.
Hillingdon runs along the western edge of London. It is the city’s second-largest borough and home to Brunel University, the sandy beaches at Ruislip Lido, and Heathrow Airport. London’s cheapest homes are in this area, with the Grand Union Canal, Manor Farm, and Ruislip Woods.
This beautiful 726-acre national nature reserve has events like a £2 guided bat walk, an annual festival with birds of prey, and the Welsh Axemen, a lumberjack sports team. Hillingdon also has cheaper places to eat and drink than most of London. For example, a pint of lager will only cost you about £2.