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Residential demand in Redbridge

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In the April edition of the NxNE newsletter, we explore the demand for new housing in Redbridge. You can view the full newsletter, which covers development news throughout London's North and Northeast boroughs. 

As we know, demand for housing across London remains high. Boroughs within our patch of north, northeast and east London are popular with those looking to get on the housing ladder or relocate to potentially larger properties further out from Central London, especially with the introduction of Crossrail making commuting more feasible.

The increased demand for housing and the improved connectivity creates many opportunities for outer London boroughs which have not enjoyed the same regeneration benefits as boroughs closer to central London. However, increased prices and lack of housing stock means that planners and developers must have rigorous housing strategies to ensure an effective housing mix which will help to deliver prosperous communities. 

However, this increase in property values and lack of availability means that more must be done from a social housing perspective to ensure quality housing and prosperous communities. 

This month our focus is Redbridge, a borough in the north east of London which occupies a total area of 21 square miles. It stretches from Ilford in the south, South Woodford in the west, Hainault in the north and Chadwell Heath in the east and includes areas such as Goodmayes, Seven Kings and Newbury Park.

Valentines Park
Valentines Park, Redbridge

The borough has strong appeal with its shopping areas, award-winning parks, high-performing schools and excellent transport links which are set to further improve once Crossrail is up and running in 2019. The borough will benefit from four new Crossrail stations at Ilford, Seven Kings, Goodmayes and Chadwell Heath.

The stations are being improved and extended to cater for the extra passengers. This will undoubtedly stimulate Redbridge’s economy and attract investment.

The borough has strong appeal with thriving shopping areas, award-winning parks, high-performing schools and excellent transport links. These transport links are set to further improve once Crossrail is up and running in 2019. The borough will benefit from four new Crossrail stations at Ilford, Seven Kings, Goodmayes and Chadwell Heath. The stations are being improved and extended to cater for the extra passengers. This will undoubtedly stimulate Redbridge’s economy and attract investment

The London property market has been more subdued over the last year, but we expect such outer boroughs as Redbridge to perform better than the prime central and inner London boroughs again this year. House prices and rents in the outer boroughs are starting from a lower base, so there is greater potential for rises in the future. The Crossrail effect with improved connections with central London along with house prices which are lower than those in inner London, will increasingly ‘pull’ people into the borough, just as increasing prices and demand for space will push people out of central London.  

Similarly, this ripple effect will impact on the demand for business premises. Companies needing industrial or office space and are looking to relocate out of central London due to rising rents are increasingly keen to locate in the borough, something which has not always been the case.

Redbridge Borough Council is actively supporting business growth through development planning to create diverse locations which continue to add value to the borough. The profile of the borough continues to improve through initiatives such as the Crossrail Corridor Area Action Plan which includes the building of 4,700 homes and the Council’s ‘Investment and Growth Areas’ schemes that will act as catalysts for future regeneration and development.

ilford station2
CGI of Ilford Station after the Crossrail (Urban Realm Designers | BDP / Hyder)

Further improvement to transport links and the introduction of Crossrail will all encourage increased demand from commercial tenants.

These factors, along with birth rate and changing migration patterns, have all contributed to an increased population, and increased demand for housing stock in Redbridge. The population has grown from 279,00 in 2011 to 297,000 in mid-2015. This is projected to increase to 362,000 by 2030.  The growing population will require substantial new investment in housing and associated infrastructure such as roads, schools and other public services.

The borough has an identified housing need of 1,123 homes per year (The  London Plan) With 70% of new homes expected to be delivered in the Councils’ ‘Investment and Growth’ areas of Ilford Town Centre, Gants Hill, Crossrail Corridor, South Woodford and Barkingside, areas which are considered to have significant housing capacity and with the release of parcels of designated Green Belt, the borough plan details its ambitious strategy for building 16,845 sustainable, energy efficient new homes in the period from 2015 to 2030. The plan also demonstrates the Councils commitment to providing a diverse range of housing to meet the needs of borough residents whilst also protecting the local character and heritage of the borough.

Claybury View
Claybury View, IG5, a development advised on by Strettons

The creation of new homes in the borough since the financial crises back in 2007 has been challenging. The value of new housing dropped and it has taken some years for the market to recover.  Many developers were cautious and concentrated on the higher value inner London areas. However, in recent years, house prices in these higher value areas have plateaued and in some places fallen.

There is once again appetite for development in the outer London areas, as developers search for more affordable private sale and rental housing that will yield a return. The actual building of new schemes has been limited to a small number close to Gants Hill, Ilford town centre and Barkingside. Such new schemes include The Point, Horizon, Repton Grove and Barnardo’s Garden Village. The property market can be a ‘slow beast’ and it generally takes some time for schemes to be developed. The availability of new homes has been limited in recent times, but this is due to change in the coming years. Our research indicates that there are over 1,300 new homes that have gone through town planning within the past few years.  The mix is generally in favour of private tenure housing, due to policy compliant tenure split between private and affordable being financially unviable.

Our development consultancy team have been involved in a number of proposed new schemes and are well placed to advise on the value of existing and proposed private or affordable tenure residential units, plus commercial space. In addition, we are able to assist in the town planning process and help on the Toolkit Viability Assessment in order to consider the level of affordable housing and any Section 106 financial contributions. We have excellent relationships with private developers and also Registered Providers, where we have acted for in excess of 20 over recent years. We also have close working relationships with town planning and architectural firms.

If you wish to discuss any aspect of development, please contact our development consultancy team on a 020 7375 1801 or email contact@strettons.co.uk/

Read the full April North by Northeast newsletter here.