Find out everything you need to know about moving to Hampstead, so you can move to this beautiful area completely clued up on everything from schools to transport.
Hampstead is a beautiful and trendy area of London known for fashionable residents, academic residents, well-known artists and other public figures. The area is known for being more affluent than other parts of London and chain companies have to work really hard to get a place in Hampstead, some don’t even succeed because they aren’t unique and high-class enough. It is a stylish area and residents really care about keeping that chic culture and look to the scene.
Rather than chain restaurants and bars, you will find high-end brands, unique classy pubs and wonderfully individual coffee shops. Because residents are happy to meander around and enjoy the finer things, independent shops like butchers and cheese shops are doing well in Hampstead. The area also has a lovely community feel to it, and anybody moving to Hampstead will feel that very quickly, and hopefully, want to add to it.
Moving to Hampstead? This useful guide will tell you everything you need to know about this stylish, desirable part of London:
The History Of Hampstead
Hampstead to the west began as a village many years ago, called West End. When the railway began, the area began developing with additional houses and land owners came in to buy plots. It was also during this period of development that West End was renamed West Hampstead so it didn’t get mixed up with the famous West End of London. The development then wasn’t too fast though and there were still very peaceful hedge-lined parts of the area all the way up until the 20th Century. When the quieter parts were developed, the area still held on to its same friendly, village-like feel which residents still work hard to maintain to this day.
Another interesting part of West Hampstead’s history is its part in musical history. There are all kinds of interesting musical stories across the ages from this area of London. Dusty Springfield was born in West Hampstead, and The Rolling Stones are thought to have been forced to stay in their residence here by their manager until they created their first song. The Beatles also have stories to tell from West Hampstead. Today, all kinds of creatives still take residence in this area of London, and famous names are regularly associated with the area.
House Types/ Prices In West Hampstead
Hampstead has a real mix of property, and many are incredibly attractive to look at. Georgian houses, cottages and large Victorian houses make up the long and winding roads, along with huge mansion flats, luxury penthouses and Edwardian mansions all placed with a little seclusion, for their wealthy owners.
A prime example of an expensive home in Hampstead would have around 6 bedrooms, would have things like a cinema, home-gym, swimming pool and area for staff to live in. A property like that could sell for over £20 million pounds.
There are smaller properties for sale for less of course, along with properties to rent. The average house price is around £2 million, and the average flat price is a little over £900,000. Property prices tend to range from between £335,000 to £5,250,000 on average. (Figures from Foxtons).
As well as all of the established properties, there are also plenty of new developments in the area. From individual properties designed by famous architects, to developments featuring multiple new homes. Many of the new developments are apartment blocks so the prices vary, but the idea is to offer a wide range of more affordable properties for people to buy or rent. That being said, because it is the NW3 postcode, it is never going to be a cheap place to live.
If you are looking for the very best roads for charm in Hampstead, Downshire Hill and Well Road are great choices according to local estate agents. If you want the more expensive areas, Redington Road and Templewood Avenue are good choices.
The Cost Of Living In Hampstead
Living in Hampstead will never be cheap, but, if you do have the budget to buy, the properties are very large, so there’s lots of space to enjoy if you do invest. Renting is also an option for anything from a relatively inexpensive small apartment, to luxury homes where prices seem to have no limit.
Jobs/ Economy In Hampstead
Hampstead has many riches in the way of art, music, culture and history. Major money makers are new developments, although there are strict regulations in place to ensure the older buildings remain protected. Retail is thriving in the area for the lucky businesses who get the small amount of floor space on offer. Arts, antiques, independent cafes and restaurants, and high-end brands all thrive in Hampstead.
Things To Do In Hampstead
Hampstead provides a wealth of activities for residents and visitors alike. Those who love to jog, walk or generally spend time outside will love the 790 acres of Hampstead Heath, with wooded areas, meadows and gardens. There are even ponds you can swim in if you want to, although they’re very cold! Hampstead also has a zoo you can take the kids to if you’re into animals and wildlife. There are some well known spots in Hampstead that you definitely need to visit if you move to the area, or even if you’re just there for a day trip to scout out potential places to buy and rent:
Parliament Hill is well known as the perfect spot for a glass of something fizzy and sunset viewing, to a picnic or just for some much needed thinking space if you’ve had a hectic day in the more busy parts of London. You get such amazing views of London from here, there’s really no other place like it and it is a real asset to Hampstead.
Kenwood House is a regency home that you can visit and look around, along with the landscaped outdoor spaces. Art lovers will enjoy all the amazing pictures, and music lovers will enjoy the opera performances that play in the gardens throughout the summer.
Aubaine is famous for its pastries and makes for a lovely Sunday spot to relax, a place to pick up something special for your picnic on Parliament Hill, or just to experience some of the most incredible French patisserie around.
Hampstead Community Market
If you love meandering along sampling fresh fruits and vegetables, farmers produce and other ingredients, then this market is for you. It is amazing for foodies and a wonderfully vibrant introduction to Hampstead.
The Horse Shoe
The Horse Shoe pub is a lovely spot for a pint and maybe even a pub lunch. It has a lovely atmosphere and friendly staff, and is ideal for a lazy drink of an afternoon.
The Holly Bush
The Holly Bush is one of the most famous spots in Hampstead, and rightly so. It serves amazing food, wine and other drinks, and is set in a Grade 2 listed building which you won’t forget in a hurry. It is a classy place to spend time with friends or loved ones and many of the famous Hampstead residents have it as their local.
Schools/ Education In Hampstead
Hampstead provides easy access to the many incredible schools that are within London. It is only a few miles from Central London so most schools are within easy reach. However, there is also a wide choice of primary and secondary schools within the vicinity – both state-funded and private.
Transport In Hampstead
West Hampstead is so popular because it provides an escape from the heavily populated areas of London, with tree-lined streets and open spaces. It does this, all whilst being within easy reach of the rest of London. It has amazing transport links and sits on the Jubilee Line. On this line it is less than 10 minutes to Bond Street and less than 20 minutes to London Bridge. The West Hampstead Overground also provides excellent transport links to areas further out like Hackney, as well as a Thameslink train to Brighton.
If you want to catch a bus, there are many travelling from Hampstead that get you around London. The number 24 goes to Victoria and Trafalgar Square, and the number 46 goes to Kings Cross. The 168 takes you to Waterloo, and the 210 to Brent Cross. Of course, many people choose to be completely eco-friendly and walk or cycle to get around.
Tips For Moving To Hampstead
Moving to Hampstead is going to be a touch trickier than if you moved to a local town or somewhere that, basically, isn’t London. There are complications with moving to London that you don’t get elsewhere. That being said, as long as you are well-prepared, and informed, your move to Hampstead will be as stress-free as it possibly can be. To help you move to the area with as little stress as possible, these easy tips will help:
Pay A Visit To The Area Specifically For The Purpose of Planning Your Moving Day
Visiting the area to buy a house, or to enjoy a day out are not the same as visiting for the purpose of moving. If you were to visit for the purpose of planning your moving day you would be looking at issues like parking for the moving van, looking at local listed childcare or pet care, and possibly visiting London self storage facilities to aid in a less stressful move.
Look Into Parking
Parking is one of the most widely talked about issues in London because space is at such a premium. If you have a property with parking then you may have enough room for a moving van. If you do not have a property with parking then you should look into where your car will go and the rules around the moving van parking on the day. You may need to apply for permits well in advance.
Invest In Self Storage
Self storage is so useful in London because you pay so much to live in your property that you don’t necessarily want to be using too much of that space for storage. Hampstead is no different, and a good sized self storage unit in London could free up a lot of space at home. Storing large items you don’t have room for, seasonal wardrobes or even weekend vehicles. It is cost-effective (see this self storage price comparison chart) and convenient and makes a lot of sense with city living.
If you have the budget to hire help, consider doing so. There are so many services for sale in Hampstead, you really don’t need to do anything if you don’t want to. A company can effectively move your home for you, even decorating and cleaning your new house before you arrive. At the very least, if you are moving into a big house, a good removals company is a good idea.
Consider Travelling In By Public Transport
If you have a removals can moving all of your items for you and you don’t plan to have a care in London, it could be worth travelling on public transport to meet your removals team at the property. It saves on taxi fayre or on parking for family members driving you to the location. It also makes for a bit more of an adventure for the children.
Plan Well In Advance
Planning your move well in advance is so important, especially when you are moving to Hampstead or, indeed, anywhere in London. If you haven’t done a major house move before then check out our Beginner’s Guide to Moving House. Getting parking permits, hiring a removals team, buying new furniture, getting additional staff – it all takes a lot of time. The further in advance you can plan your move to Hampstead, the better all round, especially for lowering stress levels.
Moving To Hampstead, An Exciting New Chapter
Moving to Hampstead is an excellent idea for young families, professionals and for anybody looking to sample a village-like feel with easy access to the Capital at the same time. The area is affluent, but it comes with many benefits and many people living in Hampstead consider themselves lucky to be residents in this area. Take your time to plan, and enjoy the process, this is a new chapter, and an exciting one at that.