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Brixton, Herne Hill or West Dulwich?

(82 Posts)
Boobz Wed 27-Jan-16 07:13:51

We are looking to buy a 4 bed property in one of those areas (schools not a concern) - which would you angle for and why? We are looking at these properties - which one would you plump for do you think?

Brixton - which one day could look like this (same road) Helix Road 2

Herne Hill

West Dulwich

Blu Wed 27-Jan-16 07:53:44

Oooh,
Probably not W Dulwich as the public transport is far more restricted .
The Herne Hill one for the stroll over the road to Brockwell Park, the Lido, the very easy access to a great range of neighbourhood shops and bars, and the two good rail connections from H Hill. V quick bus ride or 20 ish min walk to Brixton for tube, cinema etc. Has a bigger garden than Helix Rd, BUT would be noisier. There is usually a short queue on the junction, buses on the main rd. Is that off road parking in front of the house? You'd want that, there, if poss.

Helix Rd: great rd, walking distance to Brixton with it's tube, cinema, shops, fantastic restaurants and bars, theatre in a couple of years. Also walking distance to Brockwell Park . Disadvantages: not end of terrace so no access to back except through house.

Millionprammiles Wed 27-Jan-16 09:04:32

It really depends what's important to whoever is going to live there - transport links? To anywhere in particular? A quieter, family oriented neighbourhood or somewhere younger and more buzzy?

Brixton has the huge advantage of being on the end of the Vic line, you'll get on the tube even at peak time, hell you'll even get a seat. But it isn't great for getting to the city/Canary Wharf.
Brixton's great for going out, has a lovely cinema etc but we moved away because we were fed up of 'young professionals' having late night parties. That was fine when we were the ones staying up late but not once we had kids. It really depends where you are in Brixton but I'd walk around the vicinity on a Fri/Sat night and see what its like.

Herne Hill is quieter, there are some nice pubs/cafes, a decent market and the Park/Lido. But you'll be dependant on the overland train which is packed at peak times and not as frequent as the tube.

West Dulwich is a bit 'something and nothing'. The nice pubs/cafes/shops are in East Dulwich and as Blu says transport isn't great. Dulwich is a tad too twee for my liking tbh.

EssentialHummus Wed 27-Jan-16 09:15:35

I have a glancing acquaintance with Herne Hill and Brixton thanks to friends who live there, and think Herne Hill is a much better bet for a family home - transport is good enough and it's a family friendly area. Brixton gets overrun at weekends by people visiting "Brixton Village" market now that the area is so trendy.

West Dulwich is terrible for transport, and I'm not sure what amenities there are. You'll tire very quickly of having to trek to (East) Dulwich for things.

Can I recommend the nicer bits of Camberwell around Grove Park?

WhatKatyDidnt Wed 27-Jan-16 09:41:34

That part of Brixton is quite quiet - I think just being up and off the hill is a lovely spot. Also not too far from Brockwell Park. That first Brixton house looks like a project and a half! Great if that's what you want. My preference is always a quiet residential street so although Brixton the most busy of those areas, I think the street itself looks the nicest.

Boobz Wed 27-Jan-16 11:08:56

Thanks all.

We have to go into Victoria to then get the tube 2 stops to South Ken for school drop off. I thought West Dulwich is basically just one stop up from Herne Hill on the train line, so is pretty easy and direct into Victoria, no? DH will cycle/scoot in if not dropping the kids, and I have to get to Kings Cross eventually after kids drop off, so Brixton would be good for me with the Vic line.

Herne Hill is definitely our favourite due to the community feel, Brockwell Park and so on, but it's got so damn expensive. I think the HH property looks like good value for space because it's next to the railway and junction - neither of which bother me tbh so I think that's why we might be able to afford that property. All the other 4 bed properties in HH seem to be closer to £1.25m.

I think Helix Road will be good but I am a little scared by the state of it! We would need to get it for under the asking price to leave us some cash to do it up.

So West Dulwich not doing too well... shame as I do love the houses around there. I don't know anything about Camberwell unfortunately - can you get to Victoria easily?

EssentialHummus Wed 27-Jan-16 11:17:09

I don't know anything about Camberwell unfortunately - can you get to Victoria easily?

I mention it as I was round Grove Park at the weekend and was really impressed by the houses and (relative) value for money. TfL is telling me that it's either a 30-minute bus ride to Victoria or a train from Denmark Hill to Blackfriars, then District line to Victoria, 18 minutes in all... probably not what you want to be doing during rush hour with little ones.

Blu Wed 27-Jan-16 11:19:43

The W Dulwich house is lovely : see how long the walk is to W Dulwich station and W Norwood station, also proximity of local shops.

It all depends on your priorities. Do you do that school run at the beginning and end of every school day?

Blu Wed 27-Jan-16 11:20:13

W Norwood is getting a cinema, too.

Boobz Wed 27-Jan-16 13:26:01

Only in the mornings, the nanny (and eventually au pair when our nanny leaves) will do pick up every day. And I will share it with DH, so the most I will have to do it is 3 times a week (although obviously the kids have to do it every day, twice a day).

Will go have a nosey at Grove Park.

PenguindreamsofDraco Wed 27-Jan-16 19:31:08

The overground from Denmark Hill, which is convenient for most of the naicer bits of Camberwell, takes 9 mins direct to Victoria. Or the 345 goes (slowly) straight to south Ken.

pinkdelight Wed 27-Jan-16 19:43:24

The W Dulwich one is also close to Tulse Stn which is v well connected so not as bad for transport as some have said.

Wilding Wed 27-Jan-16 19:52:22

I've lived on Helix Road and in Herne Hill, just round the corner from the other property, and would go for the Brixton house. You're still only minutes from the park, nice quiet area on the whole, and the transport links are much better. Herne Hill is v pretty and chichi but there's not as much there really. Yes the train service from Herne Hill is pretty good but it's horribly busy at rush hour and your options are limited if you want to go anywhere other than Victoria. The tube isn't nearly as bad as you're at the end of the line.

bibbitybobbityyhat Wed 27-Jan-16 20:20:56

So basically you have to get to S Ken for school drop off and then on to Kings Cross for work every day. By what time? I would be trying to live a lot more centrally. Like Vauxhall or Kennington or anywhere in zone 1. Sounds like a very miserable existence otherwise.

Boobz Wed 27-Jan-16 21:04:04

It would be nicer to live closer in for the journey, but we need minimum 4 bedrooms.. It's 45 mins front door to school door from the Herne Hill property, and then a further 15 mins on the Piccadilly line direct from S Ken to Kings X, so just over an hour, 2 or 3 times a week for me. The other 2 or 3 times I will run in, which will also take just over an hour, so I will always be getting to the office before 9 having set off at 7:40am-ish - I don't think that is too miserable? DH only has to go to Westminster after the drop off so only 4 stops on the tube direct. We won't do pick ups.

I think that's do-able - but if there are any lovely 4 bed houses in zone 1 for just over a million then I am very keen!

IShouldBeSoLurky Wed 27-Jan-16 21:08:53

Of the houses you've posted, the Brixton one looks like a winner to me, but you'd need £££ to do it up.

I'm also confused as to why you're looking at those areas given the commute, though. Where are you living now? Where does DH need to get to for work? Victoria is such a nightmare at rush hour. Would west London not be easier?

cruikshank Wed 27-Jan-16 21:15:37

Agreed that Helix Road is one of the lovelier bits of Brixton - it's amazing just how much of a difference being set off the street makes. H Hill is a nicer 'family' area but a lot less buzz, traffic is appalling and don't forget if the overground goes tits up you are kind of snookered, whereas the Vicky line is very reliable as well as being fast.

Boobz Wed 27-Jan-16 21:17:31

We live in Rome at the moment.

We are looking in south London because that is where we know and love - we used to live in Brixton, then Streatham to get a bit more space, and then we left for 6 years and are now coming home and need to upsize. Our friends are either all in SE/SW London or up in Belsize/Queen's Park. I guess we're just opting for where we know and feels familiar, and we love Brockwell Park.

I need to get to Kings Cross and/or Goodge Street for my work, DH needs to get to Westminster... on the days we are not doing the drop off, we will either run/bike/scoot in to our respective works.

Maybe we should be thinking about West London - I just have no ideas about areas outside of south London!

Blu Wed 27-Jan-16 21:44:48

Is the school in S Ken a given? Excellent private / independent schools v close to the H Hill and W Dulwich houses, and Rosendale is a massively sought after primary from the H Hill house.

Boobz Wed 27-Jan-16 21:52:28

Yes - we are sending them to the Lycee in South Ken (they might get offered Wix in Battersea or the site in Fulham, but most likely South Ken).

bibbitybobbityyhat Wed 27-Jan-16 22:00:05

Well best of luck with it all Boobz. I really don't envy you, it just sounds hideous. And I speak as someone who commutes into Victoria from that neck of the woods every now and again without the ball-ache of also having to drop off children. Is there no way you could forego private school and save yourselves an enormous amount of commuting and heartache? State schools in London are now doing incredibly well.

Boobz Wed 27-Jan-16 22:10:54

The kids are being educated in the French system so we are committed to the Lycee. There are private French schools a bit closer to us but we are linked to the AEFE international Lycee system right now (we go on postings abroad a lot, so want to stay in the system to ensure we can gain entry for the children into a AEFE Lycee wherever we are sent in the world).

Thank for advice all - am getting the feeling like Helix Road/Brixton is coming out the winner but we shall see - am seeing all 3 of those properties and a couple more now on 8th Feb when I am next in London for work - will update if we put an offer in on any of them!

PenguindreamsofDraco Thu 28-Jan-16 06:58:56

I have the feeling the 345 bus stops virtually outside the Lycee. It's a slow bus through Peckham, Camberwell, up past Brixton, but once you're on, you're on, & easy enough to read, chat, do homework.
I think the finished model in Helix rd is lovely, but having just looked into and abandoned plans for an extension in SE London given the prices quoted, I'd be very surprised, value-wise, if you could get the finished look for as little as 200k on top of the price of the unfinished one.
I'd take a look at houses near the overground unto Victoria. If I go to sloane square from Denmark Hill it takes me 20 mins including connection at Victoria, I would say that was perfectly doable.

Boobz Thu 28-Jan-16 08:02:39

Penguin - how much were you quoted then to do a kitchen extension? We'd want to do that, as well as loft and total redecoration - I was thinking 150k would do it - am I dreaming?

PenguindreamsofDraco Thu 28-Jan-16 09:36:49

Yes! We wanted a side return and the building quotes alone were upwards of £80k + VAT (plus of course the cost of the kitchen, flooring, glass doors etc). We reckoned the whole extension, together with adding in a downstairs loo and stairs to the cellar would come to £150k easily.

On redecoration - we're having 2 rooms painted next week and the cheapest quote was £800 with us to provide materials. Painting the entire house will be at least £7-8k. Each bathroom has been £12k upwards.

And I haven't been getting quotes from or using the crazy expensive people although I did get a quote from Brimstone Construction just for the LOLs, it's just very expensive getting building work done in SE London at the moment.

That said, if you get it done and you rate your builders, please come back and recommend them wink

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