The top 5 places to live/own property in Essex


The perfect balance between town and countryside

Essex has always been a popular place to live, thanks to its vibrant towns, long stretches of coast and pretty villages. But the past 18 months has prompted a surge in enquiries to our conveyancing solicitors Essex team as city dwellers with new working arrangements have been attracted to all that the county has to offer. Here are five of the top locations either to live in, or invest in.


Essex’s only city is a fast-paced place to live which is great for both young professionals and families alike. With excellent train services into London, this is an ideal location if you need to commute into the capital at any point during the week whilst enjoying the relaxation of Essex at the weekends.

Chelmsford offers a wide range of leisure activities in the city centre, including ice skating, cinemas and trampolining, alongside more rural pursuits including hiking and water sports.

For families, you’ll find that Chelmsford has two of the top grammar schools in the country at Chelmsford County High School for Girls and King Edward VI Grammar School for boys.

If you’re interested in buying property here, the average cost of a property in Chelmsford is £474,632, according to Zoopla.

Saffron Walden

This pretty market town is located at the north of Essex, just 15 miles from Cambridge and close to the M11 and Duxford too. Saffron Walden has received a 93% increase in buyer enquiries during the pandemic and it’s easy to see why. The town has beautiful architecture and boasts a lively coffee shop scene too.

On the outskirts, you’ll find Audley End, an English Heritage home which hosts fantastic al fresco concerts and offers a miniature railway for families.

Currently, the average house price in Saffron Walden is £448,048.

Frinton on Sea

A seaside visit to Frinton on Sea is an absolute must, but if you choose to live here then you’ve really hit the jackpot. This is a quintessentially British town, with sandy beaches, yet without the tackiness of other coastal resorts. If you’re looking to live somewhere which is both beautiful and peaceful, then Frinton will be the perfect fit for you.

Although it is popular with retired people, you’ll also find a lot of families here due to the good schools in the area.

Choose to live here and you can expect to pay an average of £308, 968 for a property.


The former capital of England has many historic stories to tell, which are evident in the architecture and features you’ll see around Colchester. Alongside Colchester Castle and Colchester Zoo, the town also offers museums and galleries as well as scenic walks and cycling routes around the local area.

If you’re a hybrid worker or are back in the office, then Colchester is just a 49-minute train journey into the capital and has competitively priced season tickets in comparison to other Essex towns. With proximity to the A12, it’s just as easy to get to the beach too.

Colchester is a surprisingly affordable town to live in, with the average price standing at just £265,805.


Nestled between Braintree and Great Dunmow, south of the A120, Felsted has a bustling village life which centres around the local post office shop, pubs, restaurants and new coffee and bookshop. Families will love the outstanding primary school and independent Felsted School, whilst there are excellent nursery and preschool settings in the village too.

Alongside picturesque walks and bike rides, Felsted residents enjoy only a 10-15 drive to Braintree or Dunmow, whilst you can get to Chelmsford, Bishops Stortford or Stansted in around 20 minutes.

The cost of living in Felsted is a little higher than other areas, due to the beauty of the location, so you can expect a detached property to be around £621, 967.

Once you’ve found a property you would like to buy, Hook & Partners can offer our team of experienced conveyancers to support you through the purchase process. Contact us today.