Comment: Would you cash in your Herts house for a new life further from London?

The main problem for agents in St Albans is a shortage of supply. Picture: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Hybrid working means employees whose offices are in London no longer need to be as close to the capital. - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Who's longing for a new life that little bit further away from London? 

Here in Harpenden and St Albans we're blessed with the dream combo of an easy commute into the capital and lots of surrounding green space, but we don't half pay for it. 

While homes here may offer marginally better VFM than posher parts of London, a move further out would naturally provide even more space for less money.  

The trend for home working during the pandemic has left many people reassessing exactly what they want from a property, and a fast train to St Pancras isn't always as vital a criteria as it once was. 

Demand for family houses across the UK has rocketed during the pandemic, with Zoopla reporting a 114 per cent increase. Interest in flats hasn't altered, however. 


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What the property portal describes as the 'search for space' has seen house prices rise by 7.4 per cent over the last year, compared to a 1.4 per cent lift for flats, the same increase as a year ago. 

Space is what so many people are now craving, and if that means moving further out of London – further even than St Albans and Harpenden – then so be it. 

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Who hasn't holidayed elsewhere in the UK and pondered the possibility of the ride-on mower lifestyle such a move could provide? 

After all, the premium we pay to live in this leafy suburban enclave is due in no small part to our proximity to London. But if we no longer need to be so near, then maybe there's a better life to be had elsewhere? 

Hybrid working means far larger swathes of the UK are now a realistic housing option for workers whose offices are in the capital, with the occasional epic commute potentially being a price worth paying for a much bigger house and garden. 

If your employer demands it, a day or two each week in the office could be managed with the possible help of a rented room or hotel stay in the smoke. 

Tempted? I know I am. 

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