Everyone keeping an eye on the property market raises their eyebrows when the figures flow in from the London market, but there are also surprising developments from around the country.
A recent report by the BBC revealed that house prices in Cheltenham rose by 18 per cent in 2017 to an average of £313,150, according to figures provided by the lender Halifax. This compared with an average price increase across the country of 2.7 per cent.
Brighton came second with an increase of 11.7 per cent, with Brighton third with rises peaking at 11.4 per cent.
To consolidate the spa town’s position, Cheltenham showed the biggest increase in million-pound properties.
Although famous for its beautiful surroundings and the Cheltenham horse racing festival, few would have chosen the Gloucestershire town to top the rankings.
The dramatic increase in top-end property prices in Cheltenham has taken many by surprise. In 2016 just 23 properties achieved the £1m threshold; last year, this figure almost doubled to 45. The most expensive property achieved an asking price of £2.6m.
Although the Land Registry is the source of these figures, buyers may wish to consult a local expert such as http://www.completepropertygroup.co.uk/property-sales/. Buy a house in Cheltenham in the current climate and you may well be looking at a seven-figure asking price if you are searching at the top end of the market.
Although the government has tried to fuel the housing market with low interest rates and adjustments to stamp duty, these figures show how robust the market is outside London. Oxford, Cambridge Windsor and Buckinghamshire showed similar signs of a burgeoning market. By comparison, Perth in Scotland showed a decline in average prices according to the Halifax survey.
Unlike the previous year for which figures are available, much of the growth in housing prices has not been limited to the capital and the South East. Cheltenham and the South West are now challenging the perennial leaders in the market.
Nevertheless, 15 of the top 20 house price increases were in London and Southern England. To put this into perspective, over 19,000 properties sold for over £1m last year and almost two-thirds of these were in London. Kensington and Chelsea, the most expensive borough in the capital saw over two-thirds of its properties sell for over £1m.