East of England Property Buying Guide

About the East of England

East England is the fourth largest region in the country, home to over six million people stretching from London to the Norfolk coast. It borders the East Midlands, encapsulating the counties of Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire, Essex, Norfolk and Suffolk.


Thanks to its charming seaside towns like Southend-on-Sea, spectacular stretches of countryside like the marshy Fenlands and historic cities including Cambridge and Norwich, homes in the East of England have grown in popularity over recent years. The southern part of the region lies within the London commuter belt, which makes it ideal for city workers, too.


Whether you’re a landlord with a nationwide portfolio or you’re thinking of investing in a property for the first time, you can browse our mortgage options to get started. Looking to buy your first home in the region? We have great offers available. 



East of England property market prices & trends

The UK property market has reported a less than 10% increase in house prices in the 12 months leading up to December 2022.

According to the UK House Price Index, East England is the third to last region with the lowest annual house price percentage change. This is followed by the South West and London. The area increased by 12% between 2020 and 2023, with property values above the national average.

Despite less affordable properties than in other parts of the UK, there are still many exciting opportunities for first-time buyers and property investors. The region includes some up-and-coming locations such as Manningtree, Bedford and Colchester.

With one of the most renowned universities in the world, one of the busiest ports in Europe and spectacular National Trust heritage sites, East England is a brilliant place to call home.

If you want to know more about the region’s rural and urban spots, read on as we take you through the best investment areas.

Best investment areas in the East of England

Despite house prices being above the national average, there are many exciting opportunities for property investors in the East of England.


Colchester is one of the main up-and-coming spots in the region, with property prices up 8% between 2020 and 2023. The city was the first to be founded by the Romans and is a good choice for buying more for your money. Properties here are also favoured for their proximity to London, only an hour away by road and rail.


You might also want to consider the historic cathedral city of Bedford, which sits along the banks of the Great River Ouse. This county town is surrounded by greenery, including Bedford Park and Paxton Pits Nature Reserve while offering easy access to Northampton and Milton Keynes.Bedford’s flourishing property market has recorded a house price increase of 12% from 2020 to 2023.


If you’d prefer to live closer to the coast, houses in Basildon could suit your needs. This town is less than 30 miles from London and is just a short drive from the banks of the River Thames, where it flows into the North Sea. Property prices grew a little over 10% from 2022 to 2023.


Explore our recent and upcoming developments if you want to invest or buy your first home in East England. Or find supportive schemes and mortgage options to help. 

The most sought-after property areas in the East of England

Woodland Heath Street Scene Radleigh Maidstone
With charming countryside, glorious beaches and historic cities, East England offers sought-after locations for everyone.


Voted the “Best Place to Live in The East” by the Sunday Times, this picturesque town in Suffolk is one of the most desirable areas in the region. Colourful houses, rare wildlife and historic streets give Woodbridge a unique charm.


Chelmsford is the county town of Essex, famous for its majestic cathedral. Home to Anglia Ruskin University, Chelmsford is a destination of choice among commuters because of its proximity to London. Thanks to its top education across primary and secondary schools, it’s also a brilliant place to live for families.


On the southern banks of the River Bure, Aylsham is an excellent choice for first-time buyers and investors. It offers access to the coast, with seaside towns like Cromer and Trimingham nearby. It’s also an ideal option for families, thanks to attractions like the Bure Valley Railway and the Redwings Horse Sanctuary.

Best places to move with your family in the East of England

Duck River Autumn Woodland Heath Norwich
From stunning countryside and seaside villages to museums and adventure parks, East England has it all. If you’re considering moving with your family, you’ll find many attractions to entertain everyone.


Steeped in history, Ely is a beautiful spot to live with your family. Despite being one of the smallest cities in the country, Ely is brimming with historical landmarks, like the majestic Ely Cathedral, which dominates the landscape for miles around.


Epping benefits from convenient access to London and is surrounded by beautiful nature, making it a desirable area for families. Epping Forest is a highlight - a spectacular expanse of beech, birch and oak trees is home to rare wildlife and perfect for scenic walks and exciting adventures. This is Greater London’s most expansive green space and one of the most beautiful forests in the UK.


Leafy and diverse, Norwich is a brilliant place to call home. Situated on the banks of the River Wensum in Norfolk, the city boasts a wide variety of heritage sites. These include two cathedrals, a castle and more medieval churches than any other city in Western Europe. 

Ofsted rankings of best schools in the East of England


School  Ofsted Rating Date of Inspection
 Hills Road Sixth Form College  Outstanding  March 2022
 Comberton Village College  Outstanding  October 2020
 Castle Newnham School  Outstanding  December 2020
 Bedford Free School  Outstanding  March 2020
 Great Berry Primary School  Outstanding  January 2021
 Quarry Hill Academy  Outstanding  January 2023
 Brookland Farm Primary School  Outstanding  September 2022 
 Hills Road Sixt Form College  Outstanding  March 2022
 St Christopher School  Outstanding  October 2022
 High Beeches Primary School  Outstanding  January 2021

Best places to move to be closer to nature in the East of England

Local area Watton Wayland Fields
Want to live surrounded by nature? There is no shortage of beautiful landscapes in East England. Read on as we explore some of the best to enjoy the tranquillity of the region’s countryside.


This quaint market town is situated in the heart of Norfolk, surrounded by spectacular countryside. There are plenty of green spaces to explore in Watton, with Thetford Forest Park nearby and the Norfolk coast less than an hour’s drive away.


Hawkwell is near the Essex coast, close to various beaches, rivers and nature reserves. Living here means enjoying the outdoors while still commuting easily to London for work or leisure.


Only 6 miles from Milton Keynes, Woburn is surrounded by farmland and parks. Woburn Safari Park and Woburn Abbey are right on your doorstep, perfect for family days out. 


Buying in East of England's towns & cities

Kingsville Maidstone

East England is a varied region, home to iconic tourist destinations, royal estates, historic landmarks and glorious stretches of countryside.

This part of the UK is well-connected, with transport links including major roads and railways. The M1 from London to Milton Keynes, the M11 to Cambridge and the M25 through Hertfordshire and Essex are three main motorways running through East England.

Route 5 West Anglia and Route 7 Great Eastern are highly efficient railway links. At the same time, connections run from London to Norwich, London to Cambridge and London to Southend. East England also has an international ferry port, Harwich International Port in Essex.

Whether you want to buy your home or invest in a buy to let property, take advantage of local transport links to get to work. Or use them to explore the area’s sparkling rivers, swathes of lush open spaces and bustling cities.

Buying your home in Luton

Beyond various parks and open spaces, Luton is a pleasant town in Bedfordshire, just an hour away from London. Commuting into the capital is easy thanks to excellent road and rail links. At the same time, beautiful countryside spots like Pegsdon Chiltern Hills nature reserves are also close at hand.

Average property prices here increased by around 16% between 2016 and 2021.

Leighton Buzzard

Leighton Buzzard is ideal for commuters travelling into London and families looking for a quiet home in the Bedfordshire countryside. This town is located midway between Milton Keynes and Aylesbury.

Buying your home in Norwich

Norwich’s majestic cathedral and Norman castle bookend the city centre, making it a destination of choice among buyers. Along the banks of the River Wensum, the city is home to Broads national park and exciting sites like Thetford and Wymondham.

Norfolk’s property market saw the highest increase in house prices across the region between 2020 and 2023, with average prices up by 13%, followed by Suffolk with a 12% increase. Norwich’s house prices rose by 12%.  


Prefer the suburbs to the bustle of the city? Sprowston could be up your street. This town is a short drive from Norwich and boasts various amenities. Properties here saw an average increase of 16% between 2020 and 2023.


On the banks of the River Yare, Cringleford has been voted Norfolk Village of The Year for six consecutive years. It’s seen a growth in property demand, with prices rising by 10% between 2020 and 2023.
External of the three bedroom Moresby overlooking lake

Buying your home in Peterborough

Located along the banks of the River Nene, this pleasant town in Cambridgeshire is an important artistic and historic centre, home to a beautiful cathedral and Peterborough Museum and Art Gallery.

With Ferry Meadows next door and excellent links to London, the city is brilliant for commuters and families. Peterborough has seen an increase of just under 10% in property prices between 2020 and 2023.


Southeast of Peterborough in the beautiful Cambridgeshire countryside, Ramsey offers a quiet, rural way of life, perfect for families or older couples.

Buying your home in Ipswich

Steeped in history yet modern and lively, Ipswich is a beautiful city to call home. It’s packed with an incredible variety of entertainment and hospitality, from theatres and cinemas to clubs and restaurants. With the Suffolk Coast and the Dedham Vale to explore, this part of the East of England is a real gem.

Suffolk’s property market saw the second-highest increase in house prices, up 12% between 2020 and 2023. Ipswich recorded a similar growth over the same period. 

Buying your home in Cambridge

With more Nobel Prize winners than any other city, Cambridge is teeming with culture, art and history. Famous for being home to one of the best universities in the world, the city is bustling and diverse. There’s something to cater to all tastes here, from major exhibitions and thriving theatrical performances to exciting punting tours along the canals.

Houses in Cambridge are always in high demand thanks to the city’s many opportunities. The property market here saw a rise of 7% between 2020 and 2023.  


On the outskirts of Cambridge, Trumpington is a sought-after suburb combining the peace of the countryside with the dynamics of the city. 


Our Offers to Help Get You Moving

Help to Sell Schemes

We have a range of schemes to help you sell your existing home.


Low Deposit Schemes

If you have a low deposit, we have a variety of schemes to help make moving more affordable.


Own New - Rate Reducer

Own New - Rate Reducer is a brand-new scheme available on new build homes that could mean lower mortgage rates and reduced monthly payments.

Key Worker Scheme

We could help make your move with our Key Worker Deposit Contribution Scheme.


Parent Power

If you’re getting financial support from your family or friends to help you get on the property ladder, we could match it, up to a maximum of 5% of the purchase price.



Part Exchange

We could be your guaranteed buyer, so no stress or fuss, just an easy move for you and your family.