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House Market 2016 Review

The UK property market is always subject to fluctuation, the main reasons being a combination of interest rates, employment, consumer confidence, supply, mortgage availability, and of course, economic growth. That’s a lot of influencing factors, and for those looking to buy or sell their homes, the UK house market can be tricky to get to grips with.

Here we take a look at how the market is faring in 2016 compared to last year.

London House prices 2016-15 compared

In world house price rankings, London has fallen to 23rd place. This fact can be misleading as it indicates a fall in rates, but as most of us will be aware, the UK house market is still dominated by the capital.

With average asking prices valued at £600,000 for London, it’s a tricky area to move into for those on lower incomes.

April this year saw reports of the more high end London market going through a ‘cooling off’ phase, with 40% of properties on the market in certain areas having slashed their asking prices.

So if you’re looking to buy centrally located or luxury property, this could be a good time to look. This phase looks to steady or reach a plateau, according to experts, so it won’t necessarily last.

These cuts in the affluent areas are being levelled out as more affordable areas of London like Bexley, Barking and Dagenham, and Tower Hamlets have seen rises in costs as buyers increase demand for proximity to central London at a lower rate, thus pushing prices that little bit higher. Yet, these areas still remain the cheapest in the capital.

General fall in prices across the house market (UK)

Information from the Land Registry has revealed that the number of home sales that reached completion in England and Wales has fallen since last year, from 56,937 in January 2015 by 5% to 54,254.

What is the reason for this? Well, according to leading economist Howard Archer, the slowed-down market is being affected by wider issues in Europe – namely the EU referendum.

However, on the assumption that we stay in the EU, the UK house market is expected to pick up speed later this year, due to increased confidence and less uncertainty about the UK’s status.

Where have prices fallen?

It’s not all doom and gloom, as there are significant falls in house prices in regional areas that are becoming a real draw for home buyers who are looking for affordable options outside of the capital. The three UK regions with the biggest price fall are as follows:

  • Yorkshire and Humber -2.6%
  • The Midlands -2%
  • The North East -1.2%

The average house price outside of London is £288,000, as announced in national newspapers this February. The most affordable places to live tend to be in the North of England and Wales.

This overall fall in prices will pick up again, and according to Oxford economists, prices will accelerate in the next decade, along with current rises in wages.

Most searched regional cities

There is a trend amongst people in the UK to seek out more affordable regional places to live rather than finding a home in London. Outside of the capital, regional cities like Bristol, York and Cambridge are the most searched places for buyers looking at online estate agents, along with Norwich.

Here at House Network, we’re experts in the UK housing market, and we’re here to get you the fairest deal whether you’re letting or selling. So, get in touch with us on 0808 163 3090, or chat to us live, and see how we can help.

Image courtesy of iStock