London house prices keep on soaring upward

HOUSE prices are seeing their best start to the year since 2004, according to a study out today from Rightmove, while another study showed rental prices are at record highs.

Average prices have increased 1.6 per cent this month to £236,939, taking the quarterly increase to 4.9 per cent, while prices in Greater London are up 1.3 per cent on the month and 7.3 per cent on the year to of £455,159.

Average prices in Kensington and Chelsea broke the £2m mark in March, higher than its previous peak of £1,995,389 in March 2009.

“The traditionally buoyant spring market has combined with a shortage of supply and brisk turnover of property,” said Rightmove’s Miles Shipside.

“The result is another new record for average asking prices in the capital this month, representing an increase of nearly £600 a week over the last year and underlining London’s continuing property market strength.”

Meanwhile a study from FindaProperty.com found the average monthly asking price for renting a flat in the UK has risen 2.5 per cent on the year to £833 in February.

The bottom end of the market has seen the most inflation, with studio flats going for £713 per month, up 5.9 per cent on the year, and one bedroom flats rising three per cent to £657.

“People are looking to flats as a more affordable alternative to larger houses, particularly if they are reluctant to compromise on location,” said the report. However, that means “tenants looking for less expensive accommodation are coming under increasing pressure as demand raises prices of these sought-after properties.”