With Crossrail due to arrive in Maidenhead in 2018, house buyers who are considering a move out of London are beginning to see the town's potential as a handy commuter base – and are keen to buy now before house prices inevitably rise again when the new rail service is launched.
Crossrail will sweep across London from west to east, with Maidenhead being the most westerly stop on the line. This means residents of the Thameside town in Berkshire will soon be able to whip into central London without having to change onto the Tube or the bus – reaching Bond Street in London's West End within 40 minutes, or Canary Wharf in 54 minutes.
Maidenhead's potential looks set to receive a further boost thanks to the council's plans for various town centre improvements – as well as supporting further proposals to use local waterways to bring boats, punts and canoes right into the town centre.
Several major employers are based in Maidenhead, such as Hitachi and Hutchison 3G, which also makes it a serious contender for buy-to-let investors – since there is a healthy demand for rental properties from employees who may only plan to work there for a couple of years.
For families with children there are numerous primary schools in and around the town, several of which are described by Ofsted as "Outstanding" – and some good secondary schools as well. Depending on where you live, children can enter the 11+ exam to try for a place at one or two of the Buckinghamshire grammar schools, or alternatively there are several private prep schools in the area.
Currently, trains from Maidenhead railway station provide links to London, Reading and Oxford. The journey from Maidenhead to London Paddington can take as little as 43 minutes, and a 12-month season ticket costs £2,908 – or £3,692 to travel to London Zones 1-6. APCOA runs three car parks serving the station, offering a total of 384 spaces. The Station Forecourt car park charges a daily weekday rate of £6.90; the Silco Drive car park charges £4.60; and the Shoppenhangers Road car park £5.70. Free cycle storage is available at the station for up to 158 bikes. In the northern part of the town, Furze Platt railway station serves destinations between Maidenhead and Marlow.
By road, the A4 runs through Maidenhead and crosses the Thames over Maidenhead Bridge. The town is also close to junction 8/9 of the M4 motorway. The M4 and M40 are linked by the A404(M)/ A404 which skirts the western edge of town.
Buyers in Maidenhead will find period homes such as Victorian terraces, or large Edwardian homes near the river, as well as more recent 1960s townhouses and modern houses and apartments.
Some of the current homes for sale in Maidenhead, within a range of budgets, include:
£210,000 or less
Less than half-a-mile from the town centre and conveniently located for Maidenhead railway station, this spacious two-bedroom first floor flat is an ideal purchase for a first-time buyer. It offers allocated parking, a well-maintained communal garden, gas central heating and has no onward chain.
£250,000 or less
Within walking distance of the town centre, for just under £250,000 you could snap up a brand new first floor two-bedroom apartment with spacious open-plan living areas, a family bathroom, allocated parking, and communal gardens.
£320,000 or less
Situated in the heart of the village of Cippenham, about three-and-a-half miles from the centre of Maidenhead, this well-presented three-bedroom semi-detached family house is being offered with no onward chain. It occupies a corner plot with the potential for expansion – subject to the necessary planning and building consents being granted. It is less than a mile from Burnham railway station (to London Paddington) and is within easy reach of Junction 7 of the M4, while Maidenhead itself is just a short drive away.
£380,000 or less
Buyers looking for a family home just a couple of miles from the town centre could consider this relatively spacious three-bedroom semi-detached house which is situated in a popular cul-de-sac location in the Cox Green area. It has a modern kitchen and bathroom and a fully enclosed, private rear garden. which is partly paved and partly laid to lawn. There is driveway parking at the front.
Price: Guide price of £350,000 - £380,000
£470,000 or less
This brand new three-bedroom home at Barratt's Brunel Gardens development in Maidenhead has a light, flexible, open-plan layout on the ground floor, making it ideal for families. With a south-facing garden, built-in storage, and parking for two cars, the development is less than a mile away from Furze Platt train station, making it possible to reach London Paddington within 50 minutes. All three bedrooms are double, and the entire property offers 1,210 sq ft.
Housebuilder: Barratt Homes
£515,000 or less
Among Barratt's family-sized homes at their Brunel Gardens development in Maidenhead is this 1,322-sq-ft mid-terrace three-bedroom house. With an en suite and balcony to the master bedroom, it also offers open-plan living and dining with bi-fold doors opening out onto the garden; a study with balcony; a downstairs cloakrooom; a contemporary family bathroom; and two private parking spaces.
Housebuilder: Barratt Homes
£780,000 or less
This beautiful five-bedroom detached Georgian home retains a wealth of original features and enjoys a private corner plot just outside the town centre - about half-a-mile from the mainline station. Alongside accommodation spread across the two main floors there is a large basement, while outside there is a double garage and additional parking space for a number of vehicles, and secluded mature gardens.
£900,000 or less
For buyers with a budget in this more substantial price bracket, this unique three-bedroom penthouse apartment is currently for sale in an exclusive gated riverside development just downstream from Boulters Lock. Set in well-kept communal gardens and enjoying fabulous views over the River Thames, this luxurious property still benefits from being in a very handy location just a mile and a half from Maidenhead railway station. It features electric underfloor heating, three spacious bedrooms, beautiful reception areas, and three separate balcony/roof terraces that offer plenty of useful outdoor space – as well as undercover parking for two cars.