Monday 17 May 2021 12:01 am

Average house prices hit new record but London prices stay still

The recent surge in house prices shows no signs of slowing down, with May seeing a new national record for the price of property coming to market.

According to Rightmove’s House Price Index, the cost of the average property rose 1.8 per cent this month, to £333,564.

The boom in prices is largely driven areas such as Wales, the north-west of England and Yorkshire, which all saw prices jump over 10 per cent.

In London, however, prices are now more or less steady, rising just 0.2 per cent this month.

Rightmove said that the disparity was because there is a greater imbalance between demand and supply in the north than in London, with people more likely to move locally and some more able to afford to upsize.

The average property in the capital is still 2.9 times the cost of that outside of London, but this is the smallest ratio recorded by Rightmove since 2013.

Tim Bannister, Rightmove’s director of property data comments: “Last year’s unexpected mini-boom is rolling on into 2021, with new price and market activity records again defying many predictions.

“Buyer affordability is increasingly stretched, but there’s obviously some elasticity left to stretch a bit more as many buyers are squeezing their way into higher price bands.

“This high demand, with both willingness and ability to pay more, has pushed the average price of property coming to market to a new all-time high of a third of a million pounds.”

Cory Askew, Chestertons’ head of sales, said: “With lockdown restrictions continuing to ease and property prices in rural areas catching up, we expect an increasing number of house hunters to rethink their move to the countryside and opt for one of London’s outer zones instead. 

“Outer areas of London have been the main beneficiaries of the SDLT holiday and continue to squeeze the last drops of opportunity out of the incentive before the June 30th deadline with strong buyer demand still very evident across our London offices. 

“Even with new supply also up 50 per cent compared to the same period of 2019, prices continue to rise. Unprecedented demand for houses, whether they be in Knightsbridge, Kew or anywhere in-between within our London network, are without a doubt the hottest commodity, with competitive bidding pushing achieved prices to new levels.