Residential Research essex

Which Essex commuter hub is best for you?

Q4 2023

Essex has become a haven for commuters, who want the jobs and social life of London but the countryside living the county can offer. We take a look at the most popular Essex commuter towns and where’s best to buy.

Essex has become a haven for commuters, who want the jobs and social life of London but the countryside living the county can offer. We take a look at the most popular Essex commuter towns and where’s best to buy.

With its quick access to London, great schools and lovely surrounding countryside Essex has become a top choice for commuters. And while an average detached home in London would set you back nearly £940,000, according to the Land Registry, in Essex a similar sized home costs just £475,000.

Here’s our guide to the best commuter towns in Essex.

Colchester - 49 mins to Liverpool Street

Britain’s oldest town offers a slice of history for local residents with its medieval streets and old quarter – and there’s plenty of buzz thanks to its theatres and regular festivals. Trains run into London every 7 minutes or so during peak times.

Buying a home: Detached homes are just £476,620 on average, says Rightmove.

Billericay31 mins to Liverpool Street

On London’s doorstep, you can be in the centre of the city in just over half an hour on one of the regular peak time trains. It has a countryside feel with green open spaces and a laidback pace of life, along with a more modern edge thanks to regular social events and a new private golf course.

Buying a home: The average price for a detached home is £905,268, while a semi costs £489,535 says Rightmove. Homes overlooking one of its meadows are the best bet.

Brentwood40 mins to Liverpool Street

Full ofcharm and personality, Brentwood is a popular choice for families looking to get away from the bustling pace of the city but wanting to keep its choice of independent shops and restaurants. It’s handily placed for easy access to the M25 and trains run regularly to the city.

Buying a home: Detached homes go for an average of £955,550. But if you want to splash out you can buy a stunning 7 bedroom country house with swimming pool, stables and manege for £3,000,000.

Chelmsford34 mins to Liverpool Street

This is one of Essex’s most affordable towns due to high development levels. Hundreds of new homes have been built here recently, some to the detriment of its personality. But it does have good state schools, the high street revamp has been welcomed and has one of the fastest commutes.

Buying a home: The area is much more affordable than nearby towns and villages with an average house price of £275,159. But go outside the town and you’ll find some stunning properties such as the 5-bed Whittles Hall, which is available for £950,000 and is just over a mile from the station.

Ingatestone31 mins to Liverpool Street

It may be a small village but it attracts lot of wealthy commuters due to its stunning period homes, welcoming high street and excellent choice of restaurants. It also has great schools nearby so is popular with families.

Buying a home: Probably the most expensive commuter town, with the average price for a detached home at £1,301,364.

Saffron Walden – 56mins to Liverpool Street (from Audley End Station)

A small town that benefits from not having a train station clogging up its centre (it’s in the nearby Audley End). It has medieval streets and the feel of a rural market town thanks to its great restaurants, markets and huge common used for community events. However, it is an hour to London.

Buying a home: An affordable place to live with semis fetching around £306,000. If you want a bit of history, we suggest this old Mill House for £1.85m. It has 5 bedrooms and is just over 2 miles to the station.

Hatfield Peverel41 mins to Liverpool Street

Not as picturesque as its neighbours, this has risen in popularity recently because of the fast trains to London and easy access to the A12 that heads into the east of the city. It’s a good option for nearby Chelmsford and offers quick access to the countryside. It’s also one of the first on the line so you’re more likely to get a seat for your daily commute.

Buying a home: With average prices just over £400,000, there are bargains to be had.

View all properties for sale in Essex, or for more information contact Sharnie Rogers, head of Strutt & Parker's Chelmsford office.