Londoners queue overnight in sub-zero temperatures to buy one bedroom flat for £400k

The Olympic legacy is rich picking for some in Stratford

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The Independent Online

Dozens of Londoners queued overnight in sub-zero temperatures last night to buy a one bedroom flat in East London for £400,000.

The house-hunters wanted to buy homes at the Chobham Manor development near Stratford’s Olympic Park, the Evening Standard newspaper reports.

A one-bedroom flat in the development starts at £370,000 and two-bedroom houses retail for £695,000.

A middle-aged couple queuing in shifts to buy a flat told the local newspaper that they lived outside the capital and were buying a second home they could use if they wanted to go to the theatre in London or stay after work.

Others said they lived in other countries and were buying the flat so Londoners would have to pay them rent.

K Chiu, 37, a restaurant owner from Hong Kong, told the Evening Standard that he hoped house prices and rents would skyrocket even further in London so he could make more money.

“I’m buying this as an investment in London, a buy-to-let. It will be amazing after it’s completed and I think the area around it will have developed really nicely.


“With Crossrail coming here and the number of students from nearby universities looking for accommodation, hopefully the rental and selling price will go up quite a bit.”

Freezing temperatures hit a low of -4 in London last night as the buyers were queuing, according to the Met Office.

The average age of a first-time house-buyer in London is 52, according to statistics from the Affordable Home Service. In the wider South-east region, excluding London, the figure falls to 48.

The average house price in the capital is nearing £400,000, 15 times the average full time UK salary of £26,000.

Stratford station, which is near the development, is in Transport for London fare Zone 3, though it is set to be moved to Zone 2/3 to make journeys to central London cheaper.

Chobham Manor is the first of five new neighbourhoods to be created at the old 2012 Olympic Park.