London’s mews properties – the original boutique homes?

Department of wandering - warren mews

London’s mews properties – the original boutique homes?

2280 1522 Boutique London
Our capital is home to just a handful of mews properties and, as with many things in short supply, their prices are skyrocketing.

Often quietly tucked away on secluded zone one roads hidden from view, mews are like little time capsules of London’s younger years. At one point, most of London’s mews were homes of a different variety – stables, with modest servants’ quarters overhead. So why do high flyers now flock to live or invest in old horse shelters? It sounds more like one of the ‘worst rentals’ features that flooded the press last year amid housing crisis conversation than a genuine property market trend! Remember the £480 per month shed in someone’s living room? Shameful.

Not too long ago, Economia investigated what all the fuss was about when it comes to London mews. In their article, they pinned the uptake in price and popularity on three key factors.

1. Location

The first is location. These houses began life as add-ons to the palatial homes of the well-heeled Victorians, so don’t be surprised to find one at the tail end of one of London’s finest thoroughfares. The Victorian upper-class preferred their staff out of sight, but still on hand around the clock. Hence, mews were positioned close enough to prime residential roads for domestic efficiency but were also sufficiently tucked away to avoid being an eyesore. Fast-forward to the present day and this means that what London’s Victorian servants might have once resented has arguably become a mews’ biggest selling point. Mews benefit from prestigious London postcodes with the bonus of peace and quiet, thanks to their position just off the beaten track.

2. Hassle-free period architecture

The second reason for mews being high-value assets may come as a surprise, but it’s actually very rare to find a mews property that is a listed building. This characteristic gives buyers the best of both worlds. Not only do mews exude the charm that is synonymous with period architecture, but they have none of the usual planning restrictions, giving buyers a blank canvas to tailor as they see fit.

Pinks Mews, Dyers Buildings, Holborn

Pinks Mews, Dyers Buildings, Holborn

3. Rarity

Third – and rather unsurprisingly – they are very, very rare. The website Ever Changing Mews estimates that less than 400 of London’s original or authentic mews properties are still standing. Many mews had been demolished in the 20th century because of economic and cultural shifts. A shortage of servants and a growing reliance on cars rather than carriages meant keeping a mews was no longer a necessity. This makes owning one in 2018 an all the more impressive, and all the more sought-after, achievement.

CBRE’s recent research paints a picture of just how rare a find a mews on London’s property market is, accounting for just 2.4% of central London homes in 2017. This percentage dwindles down to a mere 1.9% when you look at places like Holborn and the neighbourhoods that surround it in the borough of Camden.

Mews sell for 33% more than average stat

CBRE Residential research

The average mews home sells for 33% more than any other type of property in London  – a value premium that CBRE suspects isn’t coincidental.

A gorgeous row of mews style homes in the heart of Holborn have recently hit the market and have already unsurprisingly drummed up a lot of interest. The Times wrote about this development, Pinks Mews, on Friday 19th October – take a look.


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