Living near a festival means a drop in house prices

Live next to a festival hotspot? Your property could be worth less as a result – bad news for sellers, good news for tolerant buyers on the hunt for a bargain

Festivals: Weekender bell tent
(Image credit: Boutique Camping)

Do live close to the site of a major annual festival? While going to a festival is a rite of passage for most of us during our student days, it turns out that living next to one may not be great for the value of your property by the time you are a home owner.

In the last year alone, property prices around major festival sites have dropped by 2.1 per cent on average, and the figure is higher in several locations. In London, Tower Hamlets, home to All Points East, has seen prices fall by 5.8 per cent, closely followed by a 5.5 per cent drop in Wandsworth, which is home to South West Four. 

The trend isn't confined to London, either. Property prices have fallen by 3.9 per cent in Huntingdonshire, near Cambridge, which hosts the Houghton Festival. Charlbury’s Wilderness festival has had a similar effect percentage-wise on properties in the area. Camp Bestival in Lulworth, We Are FSTVL in Upminster, TRNSMT in Glasgow, Reading and Leeds, Latitude in Southwold and Fusion in Liverpool have all seen house prices drop since they last closed their doors. 

What is going on, and why are prices falling only now, given that most of these festivals have been going for many years? Can a festival really deter potential buyers, or make them expect to pay less? 

Well, the answer seems to lie in the sheer numbers of people now attending these events, with the associated noise and litter increasing at a rate that is making some residents more and more uncomfortable. Founder and CEO of Springbok Properties, who compiled the data, Shepherd Ncube, comments, 'It is unlikely that a single event across a few short days could have such a detrimental impact on a wider market’s house prices, however, the huge influx of crowds, the noise pollution and the aftermath and the mess can be enough to prompt some to move, and others to avoid buying in the direct vicinity.

'We’ve seen the impact the Notting Hill Carnival has on residents in the area and with today’s festivals designed to attract as many as possible to remain profitable, the disruption can be quite notable for those living in the path of it. 

'Therefore, it’s certainly not out of the question that even the more granular market levels surrounding these festival sites are having a negative impact on wider market property values as prices depreciate and those looking to sell struggle to do so. This is perhaps more prevalent within city locations as the festival tends to spill over into the local area when compared to those in more rural locations.'