Average house prices in England and Wales increased by almost £18,000 across 2015, meaning the UK average property price now stands at £292,077.
In 2015, the UK housing market also witnessed 12 months of consistent house price increase. The increase has been caused by a continual sinking supply of homes coming to the market, combined with increased enquiries from potential buyers.
However, property values in Central London have bucked the trend, and fell by 8.7% on average during 2015, with stamp duty to blame for the drop. Adrian Gill, director of Reeds Rain and Your Move, commented on the findings: “The hike to the top rate of stamp duty has taken the wind out of the centre’s sails.”
The changes announced in 2014’s Autumn Statement increased the rate of stamp duty on homes worth over £1.5m to 12%, which has affected Central London house prices in particular. It has been reported that in Kensington and Chelsea, London’s most expensive borough, prices fell 14.2% across 2015.
Outside of the top five Central London boroughs, the rest of London experienced an 11% boost in average house prices year-on-year.
East Midlands also performed well, jumping to second in the regional rankings, driven by a 10.6% annual rise in Nottingham’s house prices.
“If the current speed of house price growth continues into 2016, the value of the average home may soon pass the £300,000 watermark, having reached £250,000 in December 2013. Property price rises have certainly left the recession in their wake, with house prices passing the £200,000 milestone only in October 2005,” added Gill.