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The Waitrose Effect

Waitrose’s flagship Worcester store has been open for business for nearly a year.  Have house prices in close proximity to this supermarket been subject to the so-called “Waitrose Effect”?

The original Waite, Rose & Taylor first opened in Acton, London in 1904. As it expanded into the Home Counties its reputation to grocer to the middle classes grew. It was bought by the John Lewis Partnership in 1937 and has gone from strength to strength. 

It is nearly 12 months since Waitrose opened its Worcester store, one of the largest in the UK, on the site of a former print works.   

Studies have shown that the average house price gain from properties that are within a reasonable walking distance of the upmarket grocer stand at 25% in the UK, and as much as 50% in London. It's called "The Waitrose Effect".

In a recent study on house prices, it was found that a house in Amersham which has a nearby Waitrose typically costs £456,000. The average house price for Buckinghamshire is £360,000.

It's unclear whether the opening of a Waitrose triggers this rise in house prices, or that Waitrose simply open stores only in highly-affluent areas, but the direct correlation between the two cannot be ignored.

Duncan Saunders, manager of Andrew Grant Worcester said “We, as yet, have no evidence of “The Waitrose Effect” in the area.  As the store has been opened for under a year it is early days.  In reality the performance of the local schools has a strong influence on house prices.  The school catchment in Spetchley Road has, I believe, more impact on why people move to this area.  Other factors that affect prices are transport links and local amenities.  However, a Waitrose is a great addition to any area!” 

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