Written by, Bojana Atanasovska
Updated October, 18, 2022
From the picturesque Richmond to the hustle and bustle of Fulham, there are plenty of London neighbourhoods and suburbs that can meet the lifestyle requirements of families.
What is the best place to live in London with your family, and how did we pick the top ten?
Take a look below.
There are a couple of factors one needs to consider when choosing the right neighbourhood, especially if you are a family with children.
Everyone wants their loved ones to grow and live in a safe environment which is why you need to look for areas with low crime rates and good police and emergency services coverage.
In addition to looking into the crime rate, talk to friends and family or read a few forums to get an idea of how safe the neighbourhood really is.
High-quality education is another critical factor that families consider. All parents prioritise a school that is safe, well-organised, supportive, and—last but not least—close to home.
Look at the availability of educational institutions in the area (both state and private schools) and check their Ofsted grade and past performance—it is not always the best indication, but it can be a great reference point.
An absolute must, public open spaces are great for taking part in outdoor activities, getting some fresh air or simply for the chance to stretch your legs—no one, especially children, likes to be cooped in the house all day long.
A shorter commute will not only save you time but will also help you cut down on fuel costs and other car running expenses.
An even better option than a short commute is choosing an area that is well-connected in terms of public transport—taking the bus, train or Tube to the office will help you avoid the congestion charge. It’s better for the environment, too.
The most desirable areas come with a colossal downfall—the high cost. And the onset of the pandemic hasn’t made housing and rent more accessible for families either, with 10.94 million still paying off their mortgages.
But not all hope is lost. You will be surprised at how many affordable places to live in London for families you can find if you get in touch with the right estate agent.
Now that we’ve covered the most important factors to consider, let’s take a look at the best areas in London for families.
Ranking at the top of the best family neighbourhoods in London, Richmond is a favourite among young families and retired couples. Not only does it have the lowest crime rate in London—only 57 crimes per 1,000 people, but it also has a wide range of highly reputable schools, 28 of which have an ‘outstanding’ Ofsted grade.
What’s more, it is surrounded by two of the greenest areas in London, Kew Gardens and Richmond Park, giving off a pastoral idyllic vibe that is hard to find in the capital.
The abundance of green spaces, peace and safety don’t come cheap, though, as Richmond is one the more expensive areas to live in, with property prices going up to £2m.
How much do you need to earn to afford to live in London? Find out here.
Chiswick boasts a family-friendly atmosphere, high-performing schools, and lots of green areas. Combine that with an abundance of independent shops, bustling restaurants and cafes, as well as a relatively low crime rate and it becomes clear why it is second on the list of best areas for families in London.
It is also great for commuters—close to three Tube stations, this peaceful, yet vibrant suburb is a mere half an hour away from the centre of London.
Chiswick is another affluent part of the city, although with property prices moving around £1m it is much more affordable than neighbouring Richmond and Hammersmith.
When looking for safe and affordable places to live in London, Bexley rates high on the list. Located on the border with Kent, this village-like suburb has highly-rated schools and very low crime rates—with under 60 incidents per 1000 residents annually it is only second to Richmond-Upon-Thames.
It also houses plenty of greenery—Bexley has over 100 parks with trees that are more than 200 old providing cool shades in the hot summer months. Best of all, this is probably the least expensive borough in terms of property prices for both buyers and tenants.
The only downside is that it is located in Zone 6, so you will be in for a longer commute.
Which areas of London should you avoid? Here is a full list of the worst places to live in the capital!
Located on the south bank of the Thames, Battersea has recently become a favourite area for families. It has all the perks of Kensington and Chelsea but without the high property price tag. In fact, housing in the neighbourhood ranges from more expensive townhouses to reasonably-priced apartments, so there is something for everyone’s budget.
Another plus for Battersea is transport—the area houses Clapham Junction which offers several connections to the centre via train, tube and bus.
The neighbourhood does not lack for green spaces, either. There are plenty of places to get some sun from the huge Battersea Park in the north to Clapham Common and Wandsworth Common in the south.
For young families, Fulham offers the best of both worlds. It is fairly central, well-connected, and located only 20 minutes away from London’s busy financial district, but still offers a sense of village-like tranquillity thanks to its open green spaces (including the Fulham Palace Gardens, Eel Brook Common and Parsons Green) and a strong sense of community.
Speaking of community, this West London suburb is home to many international students, while its abundance of independent shops, weekend farmers’ markets and posh restaurants attract people from all over the city.
Fulham housing is not cheap, but the area provides most of the amenities of Chelsea and Kensington, at almost half the price.
For a fun day out with your best friend, take a look at these dog-friendly London pubs.
Crystal Palace, recently voted the Best Place to Live in London by the Sunday Times, has been among the best neighbourhoods in London for families for years. In fact, the area is filled with parents and children enjoying open spaces and the magnificent 200-acre Crystal Palace Park, which includes full-scale dinosaur models, a maze and a boating lake.
There is no shortage of entertainment for adults as the area is home to lots of artisan cafes as well as the National Sports Centre which counts 15,500 seats occupied by sports enthusiasts and Premier League fans.
Low crime rates, affordable housing and excellent schools further add to the appeal of this south-London suburb.
Sutton has it all—top-rated educational institutions, a low crime rate of just 62 incidents per 1000 people and a great community feel.
Nature lovers also flock to Sutton for its open spaces and stunning hiking trails. Commuters, on the other hand, may be a bit limited as the area is over an hour away from the centre of London and is connected via train, bus and tram.
That said, there is no beating the value for money in terms of property. With the average three-bedroom home priced at £600,000, Sutton is one of the best London suburbs for families on a tight budget. Houses are spacious as well, boasting huge gardens and parking spaces.
Located in North London, East Finchley draws families in with its cosy environment, community spirit and high-performing schools. There are local amenities aplenty too, from lots of independent shops and gyms to vibrant cafes and restaurants.
Thanks to the proximity to the centre (the East Finchley Underground station can take you to central London in less than 20 minutes), this is a desirable location for working parents, as well.
East Finchley is also considered among the best London neighbourhoods for families who can’t afford the astronomical property prices of Hampstead and Highgate but still want to stay close to these thriving areas.
Hillingdon, the second biggest borough in the city, is a strong contender for the title of ‘best area for families in London. Located in the western part of the city, it has grown into a thriving suburb for young families, partly due to its proximity to Heathrow airport and the job openings available there.
It is also rated as the cheapest place to live in London, which further adds to its appeal.
As for safety and education, Hillingdon has a crime rate of 75 incidents per 1000 people annually and a great selection of highly-rated schools, most of which are rated ‘outstanding’ or ‘good’.
Greenwich has been growing in popularity lately, becoming widely regarded as one of the best family areas in London. Attracting families and young professionals alike, the area offers a plethora of gorgeous parks, various sources of entertainment and breathtaking views of the city. It is also home to great schools, with 58 ‘outstanding’ Ofsted-ranked educational institutions.
In terms of the commute, Greenwich is still accessible to the city centre—the Docklands Light Railway will take you to the city in about half an hour.
Prices have been on the rise in the area lately, although they still haven’t hit huge figures as some of the suburbs closer to London have, so you can still find reasonably-priced homes in the neighbourhood.
London may not be on the list of the cheapest places to live in the UK, but it is an excellent location for families to work, grow, and live. However, before you make it your home, do your research and find out which areas can best suit your family’s preferences and needs in terms of budget, outdoor activities, education, and safety.
Thanks to the abundance of green spaces and family-friendly activities, Richmond is the best place to live in London with a family, although any of the areas on our list would make for great family living—you just need to find the right suburb based on your needs and budget.
Bojana is my name and writing is my game. I am a content writer from Bitola who is always interested in the latest research in almost all areas of life. I have a Bachelor’s degree in English literature and a perfectionist character, both of which help me find the most accurate data and information available. Although I have my head stuck in studies and reports most of the time, I still have a bit of free time during which I enjoy knitting and watching classic 90’s Disney movies.