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Why are young, creative professionals leaving London?

Posted by The Abel Estate Agent Team on May 9, 2023

And what does it mean for homes for sale in Hertford?

Everywhere you look, there are news stories about the exodus of tenants and homeowners from the capital. Some, no doubt, are drawn away by the dream of an idyllic life in the countryside or on the coast – but it seems that the majority are heading for the home counties. And with the southern reaches of Hertfordshire bordering North London, the Hertford area is an increasing popular choice for Londoners thinking of moving out of the ‘smoke’. So, what does that mean in terms of homes for sale in Hertford?

The Covid-19 pandemic and the lockdowns might be two years behind us, but they’re still affecting major life decisions for many of us. For instance, working from home was once the exception – but, post-pandemic, it’s now the rule for many of us. And even long after lockdown, the London apartment that seemed spacious before suddenly feels very cramped with two people working from home every day. Moving outside London might mean more space for your money – enough room for two to have their own office or studio without sacrificing the kitchen, lounge or spare room. But that’s just one among countless motivations for moving, including the desire for a more laid-back lifestyle, the need for more space, an urge to get ‘back to nature’ and, for those with young kids, a wish to bring up children in a safer environment with more access to open countryside… And even the ultimate Londoner’s dream: the possibility of parking for free outside your home!

All this goes some way towards explaining the extraordinary resilience of prices in this area in a year when overall property prices are predicted to fall by up to 10%. The suggestion is that although London’s leavers may be disappointed to find that their Hampstead apartment’s sale price won’t get them a mansion ‘in the sticks’ – or anything like it – there’s a substantial lifestyle, work-life balance and general happiness bonus built into the deal. 

It’s not just homeowners and prospective homeowners. If anything, renters are leading the trend, with 40% of tenants moving house choosing to leave London. That amounts to a staggering 718,000 fewer renters in the capital – and 718,000 more moving, mostly to the home counties.

But of course, this urban exodus is something of a double-edged sword. Because the more people come in search of homes for sale in Hertford or property to rent in Hertfordshire, the higher the demand and the lower the supply. So inevitably prices rise. Which is great for Hertford landlords and homeowners, if not so great for hard-pressed first-time buyers.

On balance, though, this influx of ‘new blood’ has got to be good for any town. Even more so because the lion’s share are relatively youthful and predominantly work in the creative and IT industries – outwardly and upwardly mobile young laptop-toting professionals who can work from their roomy new home or in any of Hertford’s wealth of coffee shops, bars, and hotels.

That means more good news, whether you’re an established resident or thinking of joining this thriving community. New people bringing their energy and talents to the town are sure to keep our businesses buzzing and the nighttime economy thriving to make local life that bit more enjoyable for us all!

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