Cornwall is second homes capital of UK

Nia Williams

February 1, 2012

The total number of holiday or second homes in the UK has risen from 246,026 in 2010 to 246,494 in 2011 in spite of the current economic climate.

There are over 14,000 second homes in Cornwall – almost twice as many as the next local authority on the list, Westminster, which has 7,152 at an average price of £1,048,599 – and Cornwall accounts for 5.7% of all the second homes in the UK.

Westminster, where one in 16 properties are second homes or ‘pied-a-terres’, is not the only hotbed for second homes in London. Four of the top ten local authorities for second homes are in the capital, with these alone accounting for over 22,000 properties.

Cornwall’s neighbour, Devon, also harbours a second homes hotspot – South Hams – which includes famous names such as Totnes and Salcombe where 9.7% of all properties are second homes, the highest percentage in the UK.

Nigel Lewis, property analyst at, said: “Despite the gloomy economic climate, the number of second homes in the country increased in 2011. As ever, the majority of these are on the coast providing somewhere to escape to for the summer, a long weekend, or Christmas.

“Another factor driving the second homes market forward is the poor rate of return being offered by more traditional investments such as bank deposits, stocks and shares and even ISAs, leading many to see a second home as a more promising place to invest their capital in the medium-to-long term.”

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