London leads national house price growth

Chris Papadopoullos
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The capital’s house prices are rising – but slower
London and the south east are leading national house price growth des­pite slowing substantially, new fig­ures show today.

Average UK house prices were 6.8 per cent higher in February than they were in the same month last year, according to figures released by property services firm LSL today.

If London and the south east are excluded, national house price growth is 4.6 per cent year-on-year.

For the average UK house price, it marks slower growth since double-digit growth in the summer, a trend seen in other house price figures from mortgage lenders Halifax and Nationwide.

House prices outside Lon­don and the south east have been much steadier, at around five per cent for the past 10 months.

After storming ahead of the rest of the country in the whirlwind of last year, the conditions have calmed in London and the south east. The combined lead on the rest of the UK hit a summer-peak in July 2014 – when this corner of the country hoisted the wider England and Wales annual change to 5.4 per cent higher than it would have been otherwise.

However, in February, this gap has fallen to less than half its former glory, said Adrian Gill, director of Reeds Rains and Your Move estate agents.

“The capital has already had the first taste of added pressure placed on prime property in the form of revised stamp duty, and the £1.5m to £5m slice of the market has also been hit by cold feet in the run up to the General Election, with the threat of a potential mansion tax. This let-up of high-end activity has brought down the average London house price, but beneath the surface, the lower rungs of the ladder are thriving,” he said.

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