Bromley offers the best of both worlds for retirees downsizing, with affordable properties close to the capital

More retired people today are favouring urban areas to enjoy vibrant neighbourhoods, restaurants, shops and good access to public transport.

Estate agents Hamptons[i] reported a rise in older people moving back to London.

However, for those priced out of the Capital, Home Counties like Kent can offer an affordable alternative, especially for renters.

Super-fast links to London, 350 miles of coastline and stunning countryside make it an attractive option for retirees looking to downsize and rent in one of the UK’s prettiest counties, often described as the Garden of England.

The Centre for Ageing Better[ii] estimates that by 2040, a third of over 60s could be living in private rented accommodation.

The benefits include freeing up capital in a home and being able to move somewhere new without having to pay stamp duty and being free from the worry of ongoing property maintenance.

Girlings Retirement Rentals highlights that Bromley in Kent is popular with people looking to downsize and rent, offering the perfect mix of town and country.

Less than 10 miles from Charing Cross, London, it offers easy access to the Kent countryside and Dover and Folkestone for European travel.

Bromley is the largest of the London boroughs, dating back to 1158, when it was a small market town.

Today its amenities include the Glades Shopping Centre, the Churchill Theatre, and attractions including the former home of Charlies Darwin, Down House, Biggin Hill and Chislehurst Caves.

Girlings has several retirement developments across Bromley.

A major benefit of moving to a Girlings property is that most apartments are offered on assured tenancies, giving people the same security as owning their own home; they can stay as long as they wish.

Another plus point is that the development service charges and property maintenance costs are paid for by the landlord, so residents benefit without the cost, this includes the 24 hour emergency call system, onsite manager and garden maintenance.

There are the social benefits too of living in a community with people of similar ages.

Girlings has vacancies in Sheridan Lodge development in Bromley town centre.

The development comprises 62 studio sized flats close to local amenities with prices from £850 per calendar month on an assured tenancy.

The development has a residents’ lounge and communal gardens.

There are regular social activities including weekly bingo and quizzes, entertainment nights and parties.

Resident Peter Stark, 79 moved in five years ago and says Bromley offers the best of both worlds – town living but close to the countryside and London.

Originally from Worcestershire he relocated to Bromley to be near his son and family, after spending time travelling Europe in a campervan, following the death of his wife.

Peter wanted to be close to London, the countryside and the Channel Ports as well as amenities such as medical services, shops and transport.

He says, “Bromley is ideal – town living, great shops, parks and leisure facilities.

It’s just 20 minutes from London too. Sheridan Lodge enables me to live independently but within a community.

I would recommend this kind of move to other retired people.”

Other homes available through Girlings across the borough include Holmoaks House in Beckenham with two studio apartments available at £895 per calendar month; Heydon Court in West Wickham with one studio available for £895 per calendar month and Milton Lodge in Sidcup with one studio apartment available for £950 per calendar month – all on an assured tenancy.

For more information visit: www.girlings.co.uk

[i] Hamptons report

[ii] Centre for Ageing Better