Worthing in West Sussex is one of the biggest seaside towns on the south coast, its five miles of award-winning beaches making it a popular place to live in and visit.
We take a look at:
- Worthing’s history
- The town’s attraction
- An overview of its housing market
- Estate agents’ views
- Properties for sale in Worthing
History of Worthing
From its beginnings as a Saxon village, Worthing developed into a small fishing port. Major change came in the 18th century when seaside holidays became popular. Following visits from two members of the royal family, Worthing became a fashionable destination, and it began to develop as an elegant Georgian seaside resort.
The seafront became lined with Georgian architecture, and grand developments such as the serpentine-shaped Park Crescent and white stuccoed Liverpool Terrace were built.
Building work progressed in the early years of the 19th century and with the arrival of the railway in 1845, the town welcomed many more visitors. Several allied military divisions were stationed in Worthing during the Second World War to prepare for the D-Day Landings.
The town was bombed in the war and parts of it were rebuilt after 97 houses were destroyed. In the 19th and 20th centuries, it became one of Britain’s main market gardening centres.
Worthing has some interesting literary associations – Oscar Wilde wrote `The Importance of Being Earnest’ in the town in 1894; Jane Austen is believed to have based her novel `Sanditon’ on the town following a holiday there, and Harold Pinter made it his home for many years.
Worthing’s attraction today
At the foot of the beautiful South Downs, Worthing benefits from an open seafront and the many parks and gardens laid out in Victorian and Edwardian times. There is a wide promenade, and its Art Deco pier was named the best pier in Britain in 2019.
In terms of entertainment, there are three theatres, and artworks can be viewed at the Worthing Museum and Art Gallery. The town has an eclectic range of shops and an abundance of seafood restaurants.
Other attractions nearby include the Iron Age fort at Cissbury Ring and several world heritage sites. From Worthing, it’s easy to visit the Isle of Wight, Dorset, and Hampshire, and Brighton is just 19 miles away.
With a population of around 110,000, Worthing contains the settlements of Worthing town, Goring-by-Sea, Findon, Broadwater, Durrington and Salvington. It’s a popular location for financial and service industries with major employers including GlaxoSmithKline, HM Revenue & Customs, the Environment Agency, and Southern Water. The top three sectors are professional, scientific and technical; construction and information and communications.
Worthing’s housing stock
Many buildings are built from locally made pale yellow bricks, along with local flint. A combination of flint and red brick is characteristic of Worthing; many of the town’s walls are built of flint with brick dressings.
Another architectural feature unique to Worthing is the boat porch and examples can be seen on the doors of early 19th-century houses. The stuccoed porch is built in the shape of an upturned boat with a pointed roof echoing the prow.
A growing population is driving demand for housing and over 8,000 new households should be built by 2031, an increase of 16.31% (Worthing Economic Profile 2019). While house prices in Worthing are relatively high, they are lower than in nearby Chichester and Brighton-and-Hove.
Worthing’s housing market
House prices in central Worthing average £364,000 – this figure has dropped by £9.2k (2%) over the last year, according to Plumplot. The average price here is higher than the England and Wales average of £326,000.
Rightmove’s figures only differ slightly, giving an average price of £362,152 for Worthing over the last year. Flats sold for an average of £227,750; semi-detached houses for £436,239 and detached homes averaged £585,400. Overall sold house prices in Worthing over the past year were very similar to the previous year and 17% up on the 2018 peak of £309,077.
This chart illustrates recent sold prices.
|House type||Sold Price||Date|
|1-bed flat||£170,000 |
|May 2022 |
|May 2022 |
|May 2022 |
|4-bed semi-detached||£455,000 |
|April 2022 |
Estate agents’ comments
Luke Mills, branch manager at Robert Luff & Co estate agents said that while property prices are stabilising, there are no major reductions. He added:
We are seeing more price reductions than we had two months ago, but they are only slight. We continue to see a huge number of people moving into the area from London, Hove, and Brighton and there are a lot of buyers around.
Worthing represented better value for money pre-Covid, and the pandemic has made people realise that they don’t need to be in those high-priced areas – for example, prices in some parts of Brighton are double what they are here. In Worthing, people can live in a less busy environment and be by the sea. With the cost-of-living crisis and rising interest rates, people may consider coming here from a more expensive area.
While the second home Stamp Duty has quietened the buy-to-let market, a lot of people are still buying holiday lets, Airbnb’s, and second homes – there are a lot of forces that bring people to Worthing. It’s been a hotspot for a number of years – prices have never dropped by much and if they do, they recover quickly.
Other reasons for Worthing’s popularity include its good transport links, being one hour and 20 minutes from London and half an hour from Brighton, its coastal position, and the fact that it’s a growing town with plenty of good bars and restaurants.
Isaac Dunn from the residential team at Fox & Sons estate agents said the market remains extremely busy. He commented:
We always have a lot of interest from the London market, especially from people wanting to work from home now. The mortgage rate increases are not affecting us yet, inquiry levels are staying very stable. There is a lot of interest from investors looking for buy-to-let properties; the property rental side of our business is extremely busy, and investors can see a good return on their money.
The appeal of Worthing lies in its position on the coast and proximity to London and Brighton. Of course, houses near the beach command a high price but we also have an attractive town centre.
Properties for sale in Worthing West Sussex
With a guide price of £160,000, this modern, first-floor apartment on Rowlands Road Worthing has one double bedroom, a bathroom, and UPVC double glazing. It’s close to local shops and the seafront and is for sale with a long lease. This house is chain free, and the estate agents are Leaders.
In popular West Worthing, this two-bedroom end terraced house on Pilgrims Walk has one bathroom, a spacious lounge, kitchen, a south-facing garden, and two parking spaces. It’s close to local shops, bus and train stations. Offers over £300,00 are being asked by estate agents Robert Luff Co.
There’s generous living space at this three-bedroom semi-detached house in Cavendish Close, Goring-by-Sea, West Sussex, which has one bathroom, a west-facing garden, and a garage. There is potential to extend and it’s in a desirable school catchment area. This house is chain free and estate agents Robert Luff & Co are looking for offers over £375,000.
This three-bedroom detached house at Teign Walk, West Worthing, is chain free and is being sold by The Drawing Board estate agents for offers over £400,000. It has a lounge-dining room running from the front to the back of the property, along with one bathroom, a conservatory, and a garage. There is a south-facing rear garden, double glazing, central heating and it is close to local amenities.
This house, which needs some modernisation, may be of interest to a buyer keen to add value to a property. Situated in desirable Hurst Avenue, it’s a four-bedroom mid-terraced house and is priced at offers over £450,000 by estate agents Jacobs Steel. It has two reception rooms, one bathroom, a conservatory, and a loft room. It’s situated close to the seafront and a train station and has a sunny rear garden and garage.
If you’re looking for a period property in need of some renovation work, this house on Durrington Lane could fit the bill. It’s a four-bedroom detached family house with one bathroom, a fitted kitchen, three reception rooms, and a west-facing garden. A new roof has been installed and it’s been rewired, but the scheme needs completion. Robert Luff & Co are asking for offers over £500,000.
There are three bedrooms and two bathrooms in this detached house on Byron Road Worthing which Fox & Sons estate agents are selling for offers over £575,000. The property benefits from being decorated to a high standard and it has a lounge, dining room, office/utility room, and kitchen. There is a rear courtyard area, off-road parking and it’s close to the seafront and local amenities.
Offers of £650,00 are being asked for this four-bedroom detached house on Halsbury Road Worthing. This beautifully presented family home has been recently modernised, and the accommodation includes an open-plan lounge/dining room, study, kitchen, and bathroom. There’s a secluded rear garden, garage, and off-road parking for several cars, and it’s a short walk to good schools and the local train station. Aspire Residential are the estate agents handling the sale.
The sale of Channel View on Brook Barn Way, Goring-on-Sea, West Sussex, presents a rare opportunity to buy a stunning four bedroom detached family home in a highly sought after location. A Tudor-style property type, this house has three bathrooms including an en-suite and a large balcony with fabulous sea views. It has a south-facing sun terrace and is situated close to shops and the beach. There’s no onward chain and the guide price with James & James estate agents is £850,000-£900,000.
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