Thursday 2 March 2017

Which Chichester postcode is the best?

I was asked a while ago if postcodes make a difference to property values. Well, in swanky West London, the difference between SW3 and SW10 can influence values by thousands or even millions of pounds. In Chichester however, we don’t have many Russian Oligarchs and Saudi Prince’s buying our properties. After a little investigating though, I discovered some interesting information.

The central postcode area for Chichester is PO19, covering the area up to Lavant and down to the A27, plus Stockbridge and part of Fishbourne. The villages to the North of this are in PO18, also incorporating as far as Eartham to the East and Nutbourne to the West. Then to the South of the A27, covering the Manhood Peninsula and reaching down towards Bognor Regis, is PO20.

It is for these geographical reasons that I have witnessed scenarios where two seemingly similar properties, but on different sides of the PO19/PO20 border, have varied in desirability and price due to the proximity to Chichester’s city centre.

Of these three postcode areas, the one with the best performing housing market over the past 12 months has in fact been PO20, to the South of Chichester, with average values rising by 3.7%. In a very close second was PO19 with a rise of 3.6% and in third was PO18 with a 2.1% increase.

It’s a similar story when looking back at the areas over a longer period. Over the last 5 years, values in PO20 have risen by 31%, PO19 is only slightly behind with a 30.7% rise and finally PO18 has seen a still respectable 26.5% increase.

This is in contrast to when I last did the same research a few years ago. Back then it was the central Chichester PO19 postcode that ruled the roost. I said at the time how much more varied the mix between homeowners and renters is in PO19 compared to the other two areas, which are predominantly owner-occupied.

This is evident by the fact 186 properties are available for sale in PO18 but just 49 are available to rent and a whopping 531 are for sale in PO20 compared to just 72 for rent. Compare this to the PO19 postcode where there are 387 properties for sale and a far healthier 154 for rent and we see there’s a greater supply of rental properties closer to Chichester’s city centre.

I would therefore conclude it has been the homeowners of Chichester that have driven the house price increases in the past few years. This concurs with longer-term evidence that it is not landlords who have the greatest baring on property prices but owner-occupiers who are happy to pay a little more for the home of their dreams.  

(This article was featured in the Chichester Observer's property section on 2nd March 2017) 

Clive Janes, CRJ Lettings.


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