Living in Braintree: Lifestyle and Investment Guide

With countless attractions, restaurants, green open spaces, and fascinating heritage, Braintree is a flourishing market town, located less than 20 miles from Colchester and Chelmsford.

Situated in North Essex, Braintree has continued to expand in recent years, and now offers a vibrant base for young professionals and families to live, learn, and work, without having to compromise on easy access to the capital, which is only a 60 minute commute away.

Offering everything from designer shopping through to steam railways and medieval barns, Braintree is a highly desirable, bustling market town that offers the perfect balance between rolling countryside and busy city life.

And, if you’re thinking about relocating to the area, you’ve certainly landed in the right place. We’ve created a helpful guide outlining everything that you need to know about Braintree in Essex.

Braintree Housing

Housing in the area is extremely diverse, providing plenty of choice for families of all shapes and sizes looking for great properties at affordable prices.

From converted barns and cottages, through to modern townhouses and new homes, you will find a great choice of properties in the area, whatever your budget and property wish list.

Average House Prices in Braintree

Editor note: House prices updated March, 2024

Between March 2024 and February 2024, property in Braintree sold for an average of £341k. Detached properties commanded the highest price (an average of £490k), followed by semi-detached (£347k), but most of the sales were of terraced properties, which went for an average price of £292k.

Prices dropped around 5% compared to the previous year and are 1% lower than in 2021.

House Rental Prices in Braintree

Editor note: Rental prices updated March, 2024

As of February 2024 and according to, there are 44 properties for rent in Braintree. Of these, just over half are houses, with flats as the second-most prevalent property type, with average rents of £1,699 and £1,003 respectively. Most properties for rent are 2 or 3-bedroomed.


There are a number of different shopping areas in Braintree, sure to meet your everyday needs. In the heart of Braintree is George Yard, a covered shopping centre with a mix of big-name retailers, independent shops, cafés and restaurants. It provides a traditional mall experience, while Freeport Braintree is a large outdoor shopping centre with more than 85 stores offering discounted prices on designer and high-street brands.

Braintree’s high street is also lined with an assortment of shops, ranging from boutiques and speciality stores to familiar high street brands. The town centre is also home to regular markets and is a great place to explore for fashion, gifts and everyday essentials.

Beyond the main shopping areas, Braintree is home to various specialty shops, and of course supermarkets and big national favourites.

Braintree History

Steeped in rich history, Braintree has never forgotten its roots and, dotted around the town, you will find a whole host of heritage centres and museums that will allow you to delve deeper into the area’s wonderful past.

From Bronze Age and Roman settlements through to industrial successes, you will be able to gain an insight into the town’s industrial heritage and the traditions that have shaped the area’s legacy.

What is the average age in Braintree?

Braintree’s population has an average age of 40 – just lower than the UK average of 41.

What is the population size of Braintree?

According to the 2021 census, Braintree has a population of just over 155k, up by over 5% from the 2011 census.

Popular Attractions

There are a wide range of attractions situated in the area, which are suitable for the entire family to enjoy.

Highlights include Hedingham Castle, Cressing Temple, Colne Valley Railway, and Braintree District Museum. Colne Valley Railway is always a hit with the little ones (and big kids too!)

Transport links in Braintree

Braintree offers a blend of urban amenities and rural charm, making it a popular choice for families, young professionals, and retirees. It also benefits from excellent transport links, making it a well-connected commuter town.

Braintree by Car

The A120 provides quick access to Chelmsford and Colchester, while the A131 offers links to Southend-on-Sea and the M25 motorway. Exploring the surrounding countryside is easy thanks to the local road network.

Braintree by Bus

First Essex operates an extensive bus network in Braintree, helping locals and visitors get around town, and connecting Braintree to surrounding villages and towns like Witham, Halstead and Kelvedon.

Braintree by Rail

Braintree Station lies on the Greater Anglia network, offering direct connections to London Liverpool Street Station in under an hour. Regular train services also connect Braintree to other destinations like Chelmsford, Colchester and Norwich.

Additional Ways to Explore Braintree

Braintree is easy to explore on foot, with a pedestrian-friendly centre, lots of quiet lanes and walking routes and trails. Braintree also boasts a dedicated cycle network and, like most of Essex, a flat terrain, making it perfect for cycling.

Transport to London

Direct trains from Braintree Station whisk you to London Liverpool Street Station in under an hour, making it a popular option for commuting or day trips to the capital.

Transport to Airports

The closest major airport is London Stansted Airport, located approximately 15 miles away and accessible by road and rail. London Luton Airport is another option, roughly 50 miles away.