Hertfordshire proves popular with relocators

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Hertfordshire and its fellow home counties are one of the most popular destination for property relocators in England and Wales, according to a new study.

12 per cent of movers heading away from their current location have decided to make the likes of St Albans and Harpenden their home, with only the South East and East of England proving more popular, drawing in 20 per cent of movers apiece, followed by the South West with 15 per cent.

My Home Move studied the habits of 26,000 movers between 2011-15, finding that, on average, 70 per cent of people moved less than 20 miles from their original property.

Of the 30 per cent that chose to move further afield, only 20 per cent opted to relocate to an entirely new region.

The North East was the least popular destination, attracting only 1 per cent of relocators, while Greater London and Yorkshire and Humber drew a mere 4 per cent each.

Research by My Home Move revealed that nine of the ten most relocated-to towns were within a two hour train journey of London - top of the list was Clacton-on-Sea, followed by Harlow, Norwich, Chelmsford and Southampton.

Doug Crawford, CEO of My Home Move said: “A fifth of all home moves which take place each year can be classified as relocations, as people move from one region to another. Relocation moves are usually linked to milestone changes in a person’s life, such as a new job, moving to begin a family or starting a new life somewhere else.

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“Our research suggests that people preferred locations where family homes were still affordable, with good commuter links to the capital but were still close enough to the coast for weekend escapes - towns like Chelmsford, Southampton and Harlow.

“With the rapid increase in house prices over the last five years, we’re not surprised London ranked fairly low down on the relocation list. To put it simply, most people just cannot afford to buy in the capital if they are relocating from another part of the UK - last year a home in London cost £525,000, nearly double the national average of £295,000.

“In comparison, homes in the North East and Yorkshire cost an average of just £156,000 and £183,000 respectively. However despite these lower property prices, these areas attracted very small numbers of relocators – suggesting that when the majority of people decide to relocate, the need to be close to a financial centre with varied career options still outweighs the benefits other locations have to offer.”