Research article

How far are you willing to go?

With flexible work patterns, people are now reconsidering whether the benefits of moving further from London outweigh more expensive travel costs. We’ve done the analysis for you

Now that the back to work movement is in full swing, commuting and all of its associated costs and logistics are once again at the forefront of buyers’ minds. Our April survey of buyers and sellers of prime property revealed that 58% of respondents travelled to work three or more times a week before the pandemic. That figure is now just 16%.

But just how much does it cost to commute from different parts of London’s hinterland? And do house price differences always outweigh the additional costs of a longer commute?

Our analysis of the 50 most popular stations in London’s commuter zone answers these questions, and more, and provides a useful tool for those considering a move out of London.

The average second-hand detached sale price across the UK currently stands at £477,000. The average for being within 2km of these 50 station hotspots is £723,000, ranging from £1,859,000 in Oxford to £349,000 in Gillingham in Kent.

Travel times vary too, with Maidenhead and St Albans offering the fastest commute of around 20 minutes, whereas Brighton, Banbury and Lewes exceed the hour mark to their respective London mainline stations.

But one of the key components that would-be commuters need to consider is the cost of their travel. With working from home at least for part of the week remaining the norm for many, deciding which ticket type is the best (and cheapest) option is more important than ever.

Flexi season tickets offer users the ability to travel eight times within a 28-day period at a discounted rate to an equivalent monthly season ticket. While this option has been welcomed by some, those who need to travel more are likely to be better off committing to a longer-term season ticket.


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