Waterfront properties in the south-west are commanding strong premiums, according to the latest research. Knight Frank's annual Prime Waterfront Index revealed that a waterfront setting in the south-west can create an uplift of as much as 66 per cent. This is the greatest premium in its sector, with East Anglia the next closest area at 43 per cent. The south-east also came in the top three at 42 per cent.
However, across the board, prime waterfront properties are always capable of demanding an average of 54 per cent more than their counterparts inland. Real estate on estuaries commands the largest premium, with an average uplift of 82 per cent compared to equivalent properties a few miles away. This is because they are sheltered but still enjoy the benefits of being on the water, such as wildlife. According to Knight Frank, the top estuary locations are villages such as Rock, Salcombe, Dartmouth, St Mawes and Newton Ferrers in the West Country. Sandbanks and Beaulieu River Estuary are also hotspots in the south.
Harbour properties are also performing well, enjoying a premium uplift of around 81 per cent. At the other end of the spectrum are waterfront properties (don't overlook an estuary or harbour) and riverside locations, with premiums of 47 per cent and 53 per cent respectively. Lakeside homes have an average uplift of 37 per cent. However, this is up from just 28 per cent last year, making it a strong property investment prospect.
Christopher Bailey, head of waterfront department at Knight Frank, commented: "So far, 2013 has shown clear signs of continued growing buyer sentiment, reflected by an increase in viewings of waterfront properties across the UK between January and April by 43 per cent year on year, following on from a 38 per cent increase over the same period in 2012 compared to 2011. Across the whole waterfront, market buyers are still prepared to pay premiums for their lifestyle choices but the market is increasingly price sensitive."