14 February 2023

First-time buyer makes Canary Wharf home with apartment at Dockside at Millharbour

  • Manuel (43), one-bedroom apartment at Dockside
  • Purchase price: £123,750 (25 per cent share of £495,000)
  • Deposit amount: £6,187 (five per cent of purchased share)
    Service charge: £164pcm
  • Monthly costs: Mortgage - £594; rent - £670; service charge - £164

Homes at Dockside at Millharbour have now fully sold out. However, you can check out the other homes we have available in East London here.

Manuel moved into NHG Homes' Dockside at Millharbour in October 2021. He bought his one-bedroom apartment for £123,750 through Shared Ownership, after spending six months saving for a deposit. As a first-time buyer, he wanted to put down roots somewhere that offered views of London, a space he could make his own, and transport links throughout the capital and beyond.

Having rented in various parts of London since his move from Spain in 2001, Manuel put a lot of time into finding the perfect home to buy in the city.

It wasn’t an easy process, and in the end, it was a good friend that pointed him in the direction of Dockside at Millharbour.

A friend of mine bought a property in the apartments opposite. He mentioned this building, and through him I came to see the place. I was actually quite demotivated at that stage – I was so stressed with the process of searching for a home.

Views of the city with high quality amenities

The moment Manuel saw the apartment at Dockside, he knew it was a perfect match. A Londoner for over 20 years, views of the city he calls home was a priority for Manuel.

I couldn’t believe everything was so perfect – I thought, what is the catch here? I have a view of London, from Nine Elms to the City, a spacious apartment with a walk-in wardrobe, a huge bedroom and a west-facing balcony which is so perfect for enjoying sunsets. Other, more expensive, flats are smaller and on lower floors – it’s rare to find a Shared Ownership property with views like this.

As a teacher, Manuel has dealt with many of the challenges of Covid-19 over the last two years, including periods of teaching pupils virtually from home. Having a space to call his own became even more important.

Lockdown taught me that I needed a place where I’m able to relax. When I come home from work, and I climb up to my tower, I can just forget about the world outside. It’s very peaceful; I have neighbours upstairs, downstairs and either side, and I never hear them – no music, no footsteps, nothing.

Manuel also wanted to find an apartment with a luxurious feel, and he was attracted to Dockside because of the high-quality features and amenities.

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I’m very houseproud. I love interior design, so I wanted this to be my little nest. When I saw this I thought it was an incredible offer, with all the built-in conveniences like comfort cooling and underfloor heating, and Smeg appliances. It’s affordable luxury. Buying with NHG Homes is the best thing I’ve done in London in the past 21 years.

London and beyond on his doorstep

An easy commute was also one of Dockside’s biggest draws. Manuel’s journey to his school in South Kensington takes under 45 minutes, something he says is not widely known about the area.

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The Jubilee line at Canary Wharf is less than a 10-minute walk, and I can cross from east to west London in 20 minutes. My commute is very simple. I would encourage anyone who works in central London to consider Canary Wharf when buying – the transport connections are great! South Quay DLR is also only a three-minute walk.
On the weekends I’m always busy. I go to the gym, socialise with friends, and like to travel when I can. I’ve got a really active lifestyle.

With his family spread across the continent, the international links to Canary Wharf also offered an incentive for Manuel.

Dockside is the perfect spot for anyone who likes travelling, especially Europe, because you have London City Airport nearby – flying to Granada, where my Mum lives, is very convenient. If not London City, you have the tube, the DLR and soon to be Crossrail to get you to other airports.

The best of Canary Wharf

Manuel has also been making the most of his surroundings, including the shopping, socialising and green spaces on his doorstep, along with enjoying the community feel of Dockside at Millharbour.

Canary Wharf has everything on offer – if you like clothes shopping, the shopping centres offer literally every single brand, luxury and high-street. There’s lots of bars, pubs and restaurants. There’s more than we need really – it’s like too much choice sometimes! It’s great, you don’t really have to go into central London; it’s all within walking distance of Dockside.There’s also lots of green space, including Jubilee Park and Greenwich which is only a 20-minute walk. The air purity here is very good as well – it’s mainly a car free zone, and when you’re walking around it’s mainly boats, bicycles and pedestrians.London is a place where people want their own independence, but it’s nice to have neighbours there when you need them. There’s always someone to collect a parcel for you, and when I first moved in, one of my neighbours lent me her WiFi, and another helped me with my furniture!

Buying with NHG Homes

Before purchasing, Manuel was aware of Notting Hill Genesis’ great customer service reputation, with a friend who’d bought through the housing association before. He found his home-buying experience more than lived up to that. View video of apartments at Dockside here.

The sales team was amazing and went above and beyond to make the process as easy as possible. From chasing my solicitors and broker, to providing storage while I was between accommodation. As a teacher, I’m already quite organised, but they were there for me the entire time.

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