Bournemouth is a large coastal town in the county of Dorset. It was founded in the 19th century and grew quickly after the construction of the railway. Many buildings have retained their Edwardian, Victorian and Art Deco characters.
Today the seaside resort remains popular with tourists but thanks to substantial investment in the past few years, the town is a vibrant place to call home for people of all ages.
How much will it cost to buy?
For buyers, the current average asking price in Bournemouth is £304,458. The table, below, shows how many properties have sold in Bournemouth over the past 12 months, the average sale price and the current average value based on Zoopla’s data.
What about renters?
Average asking rents for homes in Bournemouth currently stand at £1,332 per month. Renters will need to budget £904 per month for a two-bedroom flat and £1,635 for a four-bedroom house.
Finding an estate agent
Whether you’re buying or renting, you can choose the right agent with our handy AgentFinder tool. It allows you to compare the number of listings and time it takes to sell from local agents. There’s a total of 75 sales and letting agents in Bournemouth listed on Zoopla.
Living in Bournemouth: what to expect
Bournemouth’s main draw is its sandy beach, which holds a Blue Flag award. Residents can enjoy watersports such as surfing, kayaking and jet-skiing, or take a more relaxed stroll or bike ride along the beach promenade.
Away from the beach, the town comes with more than 2,000 acres of gardens and parks to explore. Wander among the pines via the Invalids Walk to explore the coastal Victorian gardens and view the exotic plants.
After-dark activities also flourish in the town. Bournemouth holds a Purple Flag for its evening entertainment and boasts more than 40 nightclubs in and around the centre.
The town is also known for its festivals. The Bournemouth Wheels Festival in the spring has displays and demos of Monster Trucks and quad bikes, while the Bournemouth Air Festival has flying displays. The Arts by the Sea Festival runs over 10 days and has many events and installations to enjoy.
The town is also undergoing a period of extended development. The Bournemouth Development Company has created a 20-year plan to develop sites throughout the town, including building new housing and better parking facilities.
Where to start your property search
If you love period houses with character and original features, there are plenty of properties both within Bournemouth and its suburbs that date back to the 19th and 20th centuries.
Many Victorian and Edwardian buildings have been converted over the years into flats. The flats in Tollard Court on West Hill retain original features of the old Victorian hotel, while Osborne Road in Winton has period properties with bay windows and open fireplaces.
Art Deco-style properties are also popular in and around Bournemouth and perhaps the best known are San Remo Towers in Boscombe. These Grade II listed Art Deco flats were built in the 1920s and are situated in one of Bournemouth’s most popular suburbs.
Bournemouth also has a number of bungalows scattered throughout the town and comfortable 1950s semis can be found in areas such as Ripon Road in Winton.
In The Triangle, a centre for the town’s nightlife, more modern flats command high prices. Demand is also high for properties with a sea view. Contemporary seafront apartments on Owls Road in Boscombe are priced towards the high end of the market.
What’s for sale?
… for the first-time buyer
For those looking to step on to the property ladder, it doesn’t get much better than this modern first floor flat. With two double bedrooms and two bathrooms, an open plan kitchen and living space, a balcony and loads of built in storage this flat ticks all the right boxes. It’s also a short walk from Bournemouth station and within easy reach of the town centre and seafront.
Available via Christopher Shaw Residential
…for the family
In the sought-after suburb of Springbourne you’ll find this beautifully refurbished family home. The period property has been substantially modernised with a sleek new kitchen and neutral décor throughout. All three of its bedrooms are doubles so there shouldn’t be any fights over who get the biggest room.
Available via MK Estates
… for renters
This one-bedroom ground floor flat is great fuss-free option for renters looking to be close to the action. There’s storage for bikes, direct access to your own patio and a low maintenance communal garden, while transport links are on the doorstep. It comes unfurnished and there’s the option to secure the flat without a deposit.
Available via Leaders
... with the biggest discount
If you’re looking for a bargain, this chalet bungalow has had its price slashed by £130,000 since it was first listed. It sits to the west of Bournemouth in the adjoining town of Christchurch. Downstairs you’ll find a simple layout with an open plan kitchen and living space, bedroom and bathroom, while the master bedroom and a cloakroom can be found upstairs.
Available via Saxe Coburg
The most popular Bournemouth property currently for sale is…
It’s no surprise this impressive detached home in the suburb of Bearwood has proved popular. It sits well below the average asking price of £494,823 for a four-bedroom home in Bournemouth. There’s no major works needed and a family could move in straight away and enjoy the large garden for the rest of the summer.
Available via Connells
There are 93 schools and colleges within five miles of Bournemouth, 19 of which have earned Ofsted’s highest 'Outstanding' rating. You can compare school and college performance and find more information on the Government website.
Getting in and around Bournemouth
By rail: Bournemouth is serviced by Bournemouth train station as well as Pokesdown and Branksome stations. A train to London Waterloo can get you to the capital in 97 minutes, while other destinations include Weymouth and Manchester.
By car: The A388 is the primary road for locals and provides access to Bournemouth from the north and east. The A35 from the west runs to Bournemouth via the A3049.
By sea: Poole Seaport is about 20 minutes from Bournemouth and offers access to Jersey and France.
By air: Bournemouth has its own airport. Flights from providers such as RyanAir go to destinations including Corfu, Malaga and Alicante.
Alternatively, Southampton International Airport is about 35 minutes away by road. It serves a number of UK, European and Channel Island destinations. Travellers can also drive to London Heathrow in one hour and 45 minutes or head to Gatwick Airport, which is two hours away by car.
Things to do in Bournemouth
In summertime, hire a beach hut on Bournemouth’s award-winning beach and enjoy the sand and sea. You could also hire a bike on the seafront and take a casual ride along the promenade, which stretches from Hengistbury Head to Sandbanks.
A stroll down Bournemouth Pier is also a regular pastime of locals and tourists alike. If you’re brave, take a ride on Pier Zip, a zip wire that runs across the pier toward the beach.
For a bird’s-eye view of the town and coast, take a ride up in the Bournemouth Balloon. This helium-filled balloon gives you panoramic views of the coast and the English Channel for up to 20 miles.
Walk around the Grade II-listed Victorian gardens and visit the Alum Chine to see unusual tropical plants and flowers. The Lower Garden also hosts art exhibitions and concerts throughout the year.
The Triangle is one of the main shopping districts in the town centre and features high-street names alongside independent boutiques. Vintage shoppers can head to Pokesdown, an area known for its quirky retro shops and independent retailers.
In the evening, head to one of Bournemouth’s many bars or clubs. Smoking Aces cocktail bar and whiskey lounge is kitted out with rock star worthy décor and offers bespoke cocktails and regular live music. For a modern clubbing experience try Halo, which is based inside a former church and has an LED wall and CO2 cannons.
Try Russell-Cotes Art Gallery & Museum. The house was originally built in 1901 and was a private residence decorated in the Art Nouveau style. Today, it is open to visitors all-year-round and showcases objects from around the world in addition to British art.
5 reasons to live in Bournemouth
- Access to Blue Flag beaches
- Victorian, Edwardian and Art Deco architecture
- Vibrant nightlife
- Lots of outdoor activities
- Excellent shopping, including independent and vintage shops