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What effect might quality restaurants have on house prices?

PUBLISHED: 09:46 27 March 2017 | UPDATED: 09:46 27 March 2017

Service Concept. Flat Style. Vector Illustration

Service Concept. Flat Style. Vector Illustration

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Sally Noakes, head of Strutt and Parker Harpenden, outlines the often-overlooked impact quality restaurants can have on surrounding property prices

The beginning of the year is traditionally the season for new healthy eating regimes, but for those foodies who can’t resist indulging, they may be boosting your house price - as top restaurants are having a surprising effect on the market.

According to latest research from Halifax, the average price of a house in the same postcode as a restaurant with a Michelin star is £527,690, compared with an average of £351,834 for the wider local area, equating to a 33 per cent premium. Over the past decade, the average house price of all properties close to Michelin-starred restaurants has risen by a significant 64 per cent.

We often hear about Ofsted-rated schools and proximity to train stations having big effects on home values, but the property price impact of being within walking distance of a highly-rated restaurant may come as a surprise to some.

We are lucky enough to have some great restaurants here in Harpenden and St Albans and, although they might not be Michelin starred, they certainly get foodies’ ears pricking.

The nation’s relationship with food over the past few years has certainly blossomed. Shows like the Great British Bake Off and MasterChef have raised our expectations and willingness to experiment with new flavours. London is certainly one of the foodie capitals of the world, having an impact on the surrounding counties. So even being able to walk to a top gastro-pub in the area is a huge plus point for buyers.

In the capital, the premium to be near a Michelin-starred restaurant is clear. For example, properties near Michelin-starred La Trompette in Chiswick, west London, are 109 per cent higher than the average. Other top locations on the list include properties close to Michelin-starred Northcote Manor in Blackburn, commanding a premium of 128 per cent, as well as homes near Michelin-starred Alimentum in Cambridge, commanding a 113 per cent premium.

Remarkably, some of the UK’s best known restaurants did not feature on the Halifax list. Houses in Bray, home to Heston Blumenthal’s The Fat Duck, are in fact 16 per cent cheaper than the local area. Similarly, homes close to the Olive Room in Ilfracombe, north Devon, are 22 per cent down.

This shows that it is not just top food that can lift a location. It has to be a combination of lots of elements that combine to make a true property hotspot, including transport links, top schools, shops and regeneration. Expensive restaurants often arrive in already well-served locations to ensure enough footfall, so I think it’s worth watching those smaller spots where a great restaurant has only just arrived – it’s a useful indicator of future affluence and it could very well put a village on the map.’

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