Moving to a new home is tough, especially when you’re a family with lots of different priorities to juggle. And when it comes to London, the level of choice on offer can seem a little overwhelming. That’s why we’ve come up with our list of the best places to live in London for families – to give you a set of prime locations to start your search.
Putting this list together, we focused on three key family-oriented factors when ranking different areas. Safety, schools and green spaces. Of course, there are dozens of other considerations, big and small, but we think that these are the ‘big three’ when it comes to choosing a spot suitable for a family to live.
The list: best neighbourhoods to live in London for families
Clearly, we’re all different in our priorities. So, this list of the best places to live in London for families is opinion-based rather than fact. However, it is based on data provided by HomeViews reviews, as well as official UK Government statistics wherever possible. These include official Metropolitan Police crime statistics and the Gov.UK school performance tables. Hopefully, our top picks will give you a clearer idea of what London has to offer for families.
So, let’s take a look at what we think are the best places to live in London for families. Each of the ranked areas comes with a review posted on HomeViews, for a little extra insight.
Note: Make sure you scroll down past the list after reviewing it. There you’ll get a more detailed understanding of how we assigned scores to each of the entrants in the respective categories.
Green Spaces: 7
The East London borough of Havering is a great location for families. Its outskirts setting means easy access to plenty of wide open green spaces, while transport connections are excellent. Meanwhile, house prices are some of the most competitive across the capital.
Read more about Borough of Havering
Reviewing Papermill House, RM1
“Amazing and convenient place to live”
This is a repurposed building. Inside has been fully renovated and modernized. The quality is excellent, and the management takes care of the property even after all the flats have been sold. Regular gardening, cleaning and maintenance work.
Green Spaces: 8
There’s much more to Wembley than the arena! It’s undergone something of a transformation in recent years, so now you’ll find an inviting residential neighbourhood with parts that offer an almost village-like feel. While Wembley is still ‘finding itself’ in terms of atmosphere, the sense of community is strengthened by a growing arts scene and a foodie culture with plenty of family-friendly independent cafés and restaurants.
Read more about Wembley
Reviewing Uncle Wembley, HA9
“I and cats rate it 10/10”
Such a lovely environment and the reception staff always helpful and kind. And the gorgeous design! Had so many amazing comments from friends. And pet friendly! We need more properties in London like that, I and my fur children rate place 10/10
Green Spaces: 7
Fulham is a lovely slice of West London life but at a slightly slower pace. The kids will have plenty to do as the area has everything you need in terms of shopping and family entertainment. There’s no shortage of good school options and the large concentration of international schools here keeps things competitive.
Read more about Fulham
Reviewing Lillie Square, SW6
“Perfect city life”
Lillie Square is the perfect example of a great city complex – who anyone would love to live at with the luxury facilities such as pool and jacuzzi + even a cinema room! Also, the service from staff is great, from my experience so far. Communication with landlord is also clear on both sides.
7: Kensington and Chelsea
Green Spaces: 8
Affluent and attractive, this area is a magnet for the well-heeled London set as well as families looking for beautiful houses and apartments with plenty of space. It offers good access to green spaces – Hyde Park and Holland Park being the obvious headliners – with excellent private and state schools to boot. Clearly though, the drawback is the heavy price tag that comes with some of London’s most desirable housing.
Read more about Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
Reviewing Portobello Square, W10
“Living in Portobello Square”
The design of the building is very modern. The inside of the building is very clean. They are cleaned daily and are spotless. There’s 5 floors and between 2-4 flats in each floor. The lift is really handy and rarely busy. In the bottom floor there’s a parking lot. For me the best part is… Read the full review
Green Spaces: 8
Chiswick has it all, and not just for families. This smart, leafy neighbourhood has bags of character, outstanding access to varied shopping and dining experiences, and a hugely chic café culture. Chiswick Park, Turnham Green and other green spaces offer up no end of chances for tranquil strolls and the family-friendly vibe is palpable everywhere you go.
Read more about Chiswick
Reviewing Bollo Lane, W4
“Great value for money, particularly give the location”
Never had any notable issues with the development. Property is well maintained and has 2 rooftop terraces with great views. Other residents are friendly and there is a good community vibe. On rare occasions, the hot water has stopped working but this has been fixed promptly after being reported. There is also a lounge area… Read the full review
Green Spaces: 9
If you or the kids are the sporty, outdoorsy type, then Putney is most certainly worth a closer look. Inundated with cricket, tennis, golf and rowing clubs, Putney is not short on chances to get out and enjoy green spaces, the big blue space of the River Thames! There’s also a solid selection of good or outstanding schools to be found, and Putney routinely records crime rates much lower than the London average, reflecting its family-friendly community feel.
Read more about Putney
Reviewing London Square Putney, SW15
You can put more flowers will be so beautiful and also any playground will be nice for kids and parents. I thing this nice area will be more recommend ed if you make this. And more green trees, the Putney will be more popular with this beautiful things
Green Spaces: 10
Excellent schools, wonderful walks in the rolling hills of the Sutton Downs, strong sense of community with one of the lowest crime rates across all of London? Tick, tick and tick! Sutton is already known for its welcoming, family-friendly credentials, and given that its residents routinely rank as some of the happiest in London, it’s a very solid all-round pick.
Read more about Borough of Sutton
Reviewing Sienna House, SM1
“Great Location for family”
Sienna House is a located couple minutes walk to Sutton high street and the Sutton Station. The building is modern and well maintained. Tenants can have free access to in-house gym and roof garden. The view from the roof garden, located at 10/F of the building, is stunning.
3: Waltham Forest
Green Spaces: 10
This leafy borough to the northeast of London ticks every box. It ranks especially highly for safety, offers a high number of Ofsted outstanding schools and provides plenty of green space including Walthamstow Wetlands and easy access to Epping Forest. House prices also rank significantly below the London average.
Read more about Borough of Waltham Forest
Reviewing Blackhorse Mills, E17
“Costa del Walthamstow”
Love the building design and the quality. The pool is amazing and makes you feel like you are on holiday! Does need to be managed a bit better – pool closures and sometimes a dirty environment cause of the pigeons – staff try but needs a bit more. The buildings are not as secure as… Read the full review
Green Spaces: 10
Greenwich lives up to its name as it has no end of beautiful parks and green spaces as well as plenty of stunning views of the river. It’s quiet but absolutely jam-packed with natural and architectural beauty. Also, with 58 ‘outstanding’ Ofsted-ranked schools within a 3-mile radius, Greenwich is the complete package.
Read more about Borough of Greenwich
Reviewing Royal Arsenal Riverside, SE18
“Ideal for First Time Buyers”
Great development for first time buyers and shared ownership options. Easy access into central London with the feeling of a suburban gated community. Safe space with lots to do on site, with pool, gym, pool sauna. High service charge due to all the amenities, as to be expected
1: Richmond upon Thames
Green Spaces: 10
Our number one pick always had to be Richmond. Firstly, it has an abundance of beautiful green spaces – Richmond Park is arguably one of the prettiest in the capital – not to mention the gorgeous riverside parts. For schools, you can take your pick of many of London’s leading independent educators as well as 28 ‘outstanding’ Ofsted-ranked state schools. As for safety, Richmond regularly experiences the lowest annual crime rate in London, as it did in 2020. This winning combination is why it gets a perfect score from us and takes the number one spot!
Read more about Borough of Richmond upon Thames
Reviewing Emerald Gardens, TW9
“Lovely place to live in”
We were looking for a place to buy in the Richmond area and there were lots of older buildings available when we became aware of Emerald Gardens. We visited the developments and found out there was a building being completed and told that we could move in by December which worked for our timings. There… Read the full review
What makes an area perfect for families?
What are the key features that make an area ideal for families? There are plenty of factors to consider, but safety, schools and green space tend to be at the forefront of people’s thinking when they’re looking for somewhere to settle and raise a family. Let’s take a look at each of these factors in more detail, and explore how we produced our ratings in each of these categories.
Everyone wants their loved ones to live somewhere safe. Parents are especially attuned to all the different kinds of danger that they want to protect their children from. This makes safety one of, if not the top consideration for families when deciding where to settle. It’s no different for those looking for the best places to live in London for families.
To make our safety rating for each area, we considered various factors covering different types of everyday risk. These included:
- Low crime rates
- sense of community
- Variety of green spaces
- Well-developed transport network – road, rail, underground, cycle paths and walkways
- Good coverage of police/fire/healthcare services
- Proactive stance on community policing and other ‘police by consent’ policies.
The availability of high-quality schooling is another crucial consideration for any family. There’s a reason that the presence of good schools pushes up an area’s property prices. The reverse is also true!
This is because every parent wants their children to be enrolled in a school that is safe, supportive, well-run, and high attaining. Proximity to a suitable school is another key factor, as the twice-daily ‘school run’ needs to be manageable.
Therefore, when considering the best places to live in London for families, we’ve considered:
- Number of ‘good’ and ‘outstanding’ Ofsted-rated schools
- Spread of quality schooling across age groups – i.e: primary, secondary, higher education
- Availability of single/mixed gender schooling options, faith-based schooling (if desired)
- Coverage of desirable schools – i.e: do the best schools’ catchment areas cover the whole area?
- Accessibility of school to your preferred ‘school run’ transport method. Is it easy to walk to/cycle to? Can you park nearby easily?
Any parent will tell you, keeping kids cooped up inside all day is no fun for anyone! Having ample green spaces nearby is an essential consideration for any family. Particularly in London, where most homes either have a very small garden or no garden at all.
The pandemic proved how much people living in cities value green spaces. During the early stages of lockdown, Londoners felt that their parks were a lifeline for their health and wellbeing. Under any circumstances, it’s great to have green, inviting public spaces to visit. For this category, we considered:
- Number and size of green spaces
- Variety of green spaces – parks, urban gardens, botanical gardens/arboretums, nature reserves, etc
- Price of entry to green spaces – are there good free options?
- Range of age-appropriate activities and attractions across different green spaces
- How crowded are the green spaces on the weekends and public holidays? It’s good to have some hidden gems nearby, alongside the big, popular parks.
If our list of the best places to live in London for families has inspired you to take a closer look, our area guides can give you a lot more detail on all of our top-ranking spots. Alternatively, if you need more info on crime rates and safety issues, check out our list of the top 10 safest places to live in London.
Top 10 safest places to live in London
Top 10 safest places to live in the UK
Best views in London from 20 stunning riverside apartments
HomeViews provides verified resident reviews of the UK’s housing developments. We’re working with developers, landlords and the Government to recognise high performers and help to improve standards in the built environment.