Property and Conservation Areas

A survey of estate agents, including those based locally, by English Heritage shows that people are prepared to pay higher prices for properties in well-kept conservation areas – especially with original features intact.

The poll of estate agents was done in the run-up to the launch of this year’s English Heritage at Risk register on Tuesday June 23. The focus this year is on Conservation Areas at Risk and English Heritage will be announcing the results of the first ever study into the condition of more than 1190 historic conservation areas in the East of England. It will also be launching a campaign to help residents and councils work together to improve these special places. And the views of estate agents were included to add weight to the push to see our most cherished and distinctive neighbourhoods safeguarded.

Jan Hytch, of Arnolds, who took part in the survey, said:: “The reason a property sells for more in a conservation area is because there is less chance of unappealing local development meaning that the purchaser can feel more secure that the character of the area will be preserved.” She added that “unsympathetic modernisations such as replacement windows/doors in inappropriate materials” were the most damaging things a property owner could do to reduce its financial value and she would tell a prospective buyer in a conservation area that “the environment enjoys a higher degree of control over redevelopment.” David Stebbens of Watsons, who also took part, said: “Properties in conservation areas tend to sell for more because they tend to be more attractive and in sought after locations.”

This year’s Heritage at Risk register will also list for the East of England all the Grade I and II* historic buildings, all the scheduled monuments, historic parks, gardens and landscapes at risk..

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