Salcombe named Britain's priciest seaside town as coastal house prices rise

The price of coastal homes has risen by 42 per cent over the last decade

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The Independent Online

"Oh I do like to be beside the seaside." Well, you might like it even more if you live in the South Devon coastal town of Salcombe.

In a study by the Halifax, Salcombe, which is about 30 miles east of Plymouth, was ranked as the most expensive place to live by the sea in Britain.

The place dubbed “Chelsea-on-Sea” has outranked other coastal towns, such as Sandbanks in Poole and Padstow in Cornwall, to become Britain’s priciest seaside town.

According to the study, the average price for a house in the town at the mouth of the Kingsbridge estuary had risen to £615,000, nearly £50,000 more than the average house price in second-placed Sandbanks – where the average house price was measured at £574,000.

Noted for its picturesque views and natural beauty, Salcombe has become a popular holiday destination for people in the summer months and from May to September it can see its population balloon from just over 2,000 to 20,000 residents.


Among those who often holiday in Salcombe are a host of celebrities including Michael Parkinson and Kate Bush who both own holiday homes there.

Some residents have criticised the impact rich property owners are having on Salcombe’s house prices.  

Rob Wheeler, town councillor and former mayor of Salcombe, said that the house prices in Salcombe were “on steroids” due to numerous millionaires and second home owners willing to pay six figure sums for properties in the town.

He said that this “house building frenzy” was failing to meet the demand in more affordable housing for locals.

The rise in house prices in Salcombe is part of a wider increase in property prices across Britain’s coastal towns.

According to the Halifax study, over the past decade coastal house prices had risen by nearly 42 per cent and now on average a coastal home would set you back nearly £200,000.

Seaside towns on the south coast seem to be doing best out of the boom, with places like Lyme Regis, Dartmouth and Wadebridge all seeing their average house price increase by £500 a month in the last decade.

Despite this, the average coastal property is still £42,000 lower than the average inland house, with your average non-coastal home costing £240,000.