Major uplift in investment and value for beachfront developments

In our latest 2021 report we assessed which seaside locations rated highest for moving outside of London or buying a second home. The report also considered the quality of the properties available with uninterrupted sea views, beaches, and air quality as well as how easy it is to get into and out of London.

We researched data from ten of the seaside locations that featured in the top 20 seaside locations of Property market index report 2020/21 – ‘Londoners by the sea’ to look at the market trends and property prices across the past twelve months.

Amanda Collison, senior researcher at Property, said “We are seeing demand far outweigh supply and this is going to continue to drive house prices upwards for properties close to the sea. Ramsgate, Margate along with places like Brighton are proving hugely popular with London buyers and came out top in our 2021 report.”

Ramsgate’s Royal Harbour – celebrates its 200th anniversary as the only ‘Royal’ harbour in the UK

“Ramsgate came top because of further investment in the transport infrastructure, it’s stunning- beaches, café culture, along with value for money property and rich maritime history. This summer the town celebrates the historic harbours 200-year anniversary as the only ‘Royal’ harbour in the UK. In recent months there has been major announcements around investments by both the government and private in funding, and we predict that this town is set to return to the glory days it enjoyed in Victorian times.”

Ramsgate was awarded the title ‘Royal Harbour’ by royal decree in 1821 by the reigning monarch King George IV. It is the only ‘Royal’ harbour in the UK. A centre piece of the weeklong celebrations in September will be a life-size King George IV statue created by the late sculptor Dominic Grant. 

The research showed a huge appetite for beach-front living with billions being invested in modern luxury developments being built with massive demand due to their proximity to London.

3D image of the Royal Sands Ramsgate £50m sea front development

Four of the locations identified in the report have had major investment with developments currently underway.

Ramsgate– ‘Royal Sands Ramsgate’ beachfront development along with Manston airport redevelopment and new high-speed railway station ‘Thanet Parkway’ reducing travel times to under an hour to London. £500 million of investment over the next 3-5 years planned for the area.

Worthing– Seafront Investment Plan is transforming the beach front and includes ‘Bayside’ beachfront development. Over £100 million of investment.

Brighton – ‘The Marina Outer Harbour’ development partnership plus £1billion of developments across Brighton and Hove in coming years.

Southend – ‘Clifftown Shore’ a deluxe £125million seafront complex on the old Esplanade site will be completed by the end of 2021 

On average a house with sea views or within a short walking distance to the sea is £346,184 more expensive than the average price paid for a home in these popular seaside locations, a these are therefore prime locations for developers and planners as coastal living is set to continue to boom over the next 5-10 years.

Brighton Marina

With working from home expected to be the new norm, many house hunters are also looking for more space, such as garages and gardens to develop into home offices. Which are not always practical, available, or affordable in a major town or city.

People moving out of London are also doing so because they need to ‘come into the office’ far more rarely, perhaps as little as once or twice a month which is further driving demand. Estate agents have noticed that older people are moving closer to family, while younger buyers are looking for an excellent place to start a family.

1 in 10 companies has already reduced office space because of COVID-19 with another 36% considering it, according to Management Today research.

Following a survey of more than 500 senior decision-makers at companies found that 73% expect businesses to downsize because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Paul Howells, chief executive of Accumulate Capital, said “The days when a company would own or rent an office with a desk in it for each and every member of staff are coming to an end – in reality, this trend was already taking shape, but the coronavirus crisis has greatly accelerated it.”

Rightmove’s director of property data Tim Bannister said: “More space has always been the most common reason for people moving home but the evolution for many, from balancing their laptop on the end of a bed last March to making an office a permanent addition to a home, has led to a need for even bigger homes than before.”

Property Market-Index May 2021 Update – ‘Londoners by the sea’ report






Average price paid for a home

Average cost of a home with sea views/walking distance of the sea

Difference in price (£) between columns 1 and 2




+£628,130 more




+£436,925 more




+£394,367 more




+£375,413 more




+£283,336 more




+£345,449 more




+£266,360 more




+£150,637 more




+£284,435 more




+£269,790 more

Average of all towns



+£343,484 more

Table 1: Figures taken from Zoopla and Rightmove; average cost of a house with sea views/within walking distance of the sea was calculated by taking the average of 3 properties within that category in each area (21 April 2021)

The research showed the past 12 months have displayed one of the most surprisingly active property markets of the last decade. According to Zoopla, the average value change in house prices during this time in these popular seaside towns is £26,752 which represents an average of a 9.2% increase, despite the pandemic.

Director, Ben Smith, from Miles & Barr estate agents who have branches in various coastal towns across Kent said “We have seen an influx of buyers from London and other urban areas as they seek the perks of coastal living. One hundred thousand plus people were commuting to international stations in Stratford and St Pancras prior to the lockdown and have realised along with many city dwellers that they can live and work right next to the sea with sea views and award-winning beaches on their doorstep. Clean air, café culture, less travel, more space and value for money as well as a shortage of stock are making these coastal towns the go to location for property buyers.”

“Ramsgate, Margate and Deal are seeing huge demand due to their maritime history and culture. So much investment continues to come into these coastal locations.”

Senior Researcher, Amanda Collison, at said “People are looking to properties by the coast for the quality of life, fresher air, more space and a family-friendly appeal. The trend has only accelerated since Property Market-Index latest report ‘Coastal Property Markets for London Buyers’.”

With the stamp duty holiday extension and the reintroduction of 95% mortgages, expects to see high demands for properties in these coastal areas.

Download this May 2021 report from Property Market Index