Balham named again in ‘Best places to live’ list

Published: 18 March 2014

Balham’s growing reputation as a great place to live has been highlighted in a new survey by The Sunday Times.

This weekend’s edition named Balham in its list of the “Best places to live in Britain”.

It was one of just five locations in the capital to have made it into the paper’s UK-wide shortlist and was described as “one of the capital’s most sought after-addresses”.

Balham’s high achieving schools and transport links were highlighted in the report, along with its shops, restaurants and its easy access to the green space of Tooting Common and the Tooting Bec Lido – Europe’s largest open air freshwater swimming pool.

The newspaper’s verdict is the latest in a growing line of plaudits for Balham.

Last summer it was named as one of the most sought after places to live in the country by a leading firm of estate agents, which pointed towards its leafy streets, green open spaces, good shops, good transport links and great local schools.

Estate agency haart said that more people were trying to buy homes in Balham than anywhere else in the country.

The company found there were 46 registered buyers for every property in the SW12 postcode, compared with a London-wide average of 19 to one and a national figure of eight to one.

Agents said property prices in Balham offered great value for money to buyers, while the growing stature of boutique shops, bars and restaurants in its town centre was also a big pull.

Paul Smith, the company’s chief executive described Balham as “a kind of new Notting Hill — the hip south-of-the-river enclave.”

Wandsworth Council leader Ravi Govindia said: “It will come as no surprise to people living in Balham that the rest of world is waking up to its attractions.

“It has great schools and shops and is very close to wonderful wide open green spaces that are key priorities for young families. The bus and tube links are excellent too.

“Crime rates in the borough are the lowest in inner London, while local services are ranked among the best in the country.

“Combine these factors with the fact that Wandsworth has such low council tax levels and it’s no surprise that places like Balham and other parts of the borough are proving so popular.”

Wandsworth’s Band D council tax bill for the next 12 months is £682. This compares to an average bill in London of more than £1,300.

People are already talking about why they love living in Wandsworth. To find out more about the council’s ambitions to make the borough Britain’s best and to see what other people are saying – visit