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London house price rise

Grant Bather

June 7, 2006

The data from haart estate agents revealed the average London house price has reached over a quarter of million pounds, rising for the eighth consecutive month.

The property market remains buoyant as buyers continue to feel positive and return to the market. The average price of a property in London increased by 1% in May to £250,137, up from £247,730 in April (Graph 1). House prices have increased by 10% since this time last year from £226.144.

Properties in North East London have seen the highest increase in value at an incredible 4.5%.

Demand for London properties has been high throughout May but the increasingly high prices have caused potential buyers to remain price sensitive. However, haart expects that prices will level out in the second half of the year.

Paul Smith, chief executive of haart estate agents comments: “The market has been very buoyant this first half of the year, as buyers are continuing to return to the market. Average house prices as a result are inching their way up and have now exceeded the £250,000 mark. Buyers are remaining price sensitive, however, and the overpriced properties are not shifting. We are expecting the World Cup to impact on activity levels over the next few months, and there will certainly be a bounce in the market after the competition. Now is a great time to enter the market and snap up a deal, ensuring you are a step ahead of the post tournament rush.”

FIRST TIME BUYER LEVELS STABILISE

Paul Smith, comments: “Despite the average prices exceeding a quarter of a million pounds this month, the level of first time buyers remains at 27% of the market share (Graph 2). First time buyers remain confident that the housing market is healthy, and with interest rates remaining relatively low they are still able to afford repayments on their mortgages, despite the rising prices.”

The number of buy to let investors is at 12 % of the market share as they also return because of renewed confidence in the housing market.

LONDON-WIDE VARIATIONS

There have been marked variations in property prices across the different areas of the capital, with the North East and the East seeing the greatest increases in value at 4.5% and 2.1% respectively. These areas have benefited from regeneration and improvement driven by the 2012 Olympics as well as record high salaries in the City square mile. The West and the South West still have the highest average prices of £280,380 and £273,362, although they have seen the lowest percentage increases in May.

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