Published: 25/05/2018Capital growth
The latest data from the Land Registry for December 2017 reveal how resale prices have changed across the regions of England and Wales in the last 12 months. By way of context, the whole UK average year-on-year price change has been 5.2 per cent.
The best performing region has been the South West which has seen price growth of 7.5 per cent in the last year, and the overall average price is now £254,100, 12 per cent above the national average. The weakest performing region was London with price growth of just 2.5 per cent.
This pattern reveals a move away from the north/south, or east/west divide in price performance we’ve seen in the past. That is because the national housing market is relatively balanced and each region has a slightly different supply/demand balance which has the effect of putting more or less upward pressure on house prices.
When it comes to assessing the overall health of the property market, sales volumes are arguably more telling than prices per se. There is a delay between property transactions taking place and arriving in the Land
Registry data, so to make sure we have a reliable sample, we have compared regional sales levels in the first three quarters of 2017 vs the same period in the year before.
The most significant positive change in transactions was for Wales, where sales volumes were 7.3 per cent higher than the previous year. This was followed by the North East where transactions were 4.9 per cent higher.
London came bottom of the list with 8.0 per cent fewer sales, while nationally there was a fall of 1.5 per cent.
As the map shows, there is something of a north-west vs south-east dividing line to sales volumes. When the housing market starts to cool, it usually begins cooling in central London and then the effect ripples out to the rest of the country.
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