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UK million-pound home sales stalled in 2018

The number of properties sold for a million pounds or more in the UK rose by just 1% in 2018, ending a whole decade growth of 194% over the 10 years between 2008 and 2018, according to Lloyds Bank.

The study suggests that the results are linked to year-on-year sales in the capital being flat, with 8,267 million-pound homes sold in 2018 compared to a record high of 8,308 the previous year.

There was no measurable growth in the South East, with 3,390 million-pound homes sold in 2018 – just up from the 3,377 sold in 2017.

What’s more, London experienced a 3% drop in the number of two million-pound-plus homes sold, falling from 1,946 to 1,886 over the course of the year – although this is still up 188% from a decade ago.

Yorkshire and Humber recorded the biggest reduction across Great Britain, with million-pound home sales dropping by 23% from 2017 (133 homes sold in 2017, down to 103 in 2018). The South West experienced a fall of 1%, from 676 homes in 2017 to 668 in 2018.

Despite the slowdown, the total number of homes sold for more than a million pounds in the UK was 14,638 – the highest number ever recorded. The number of houses sold for more than two million pounds was down slightly – from 2,530 in 2017 to 2,501 in 2018.

The East Midlands sees exceptional growth

The number of million-pound homes in the East Midlands increased by 39% in the year to 2018. Some 100 million-pound homes were sold in the East Midlands in 2018, up from 49 sold in 2017.

Meanwhile, sales in the West Midlands were up by 13% compared to 2017, with the number of homes sold over the last year increasing from 198 to 223.

Scotland also experienced positive growth (+14%), followed by the North West (+9%), Wales (+9%) and the North East (+4%). However, the flat results in these regions outweighed positive gains elsewhere.

London continues to be a property powerhouse

Unsurprisingly, nine of the top 10 Local Authority districts with million-pound house sales in 2018 were located in the capital, with Westminster (888 houses), Kensington & Chelsea (808) and Wandsworth (740) making up the top three.

Elmbridge in the South East was the only Local Authority outside of London in the top 10, which came in at number seven with 429 houses sold.

This was also the case for two million-pound house sales, with Kensington & Chelsea (432), Westminster (418) and Hammersmith & Fulham (167) making up the top three. Again, Elmbridge was the only one outside of London to feature in the top 10 with 87 houses sold.

Outside London and the South East, Local Authority districts St Albans and Epping Forest in the East of England had the highest numbers of million-pound properties sold, with 193 and 117 respectively.

Three Rivers (115), Edinburgh (111) and Cheshire East (102) were the only other areas to witness sales over 100.

Louise Santaana, head of private banking and lending at Lloyds Bank Private Banking, commented: “The high-value property boom the country has experienced over the last decade has decelerated in the past 12 months, which is in line with expectations.”

“However, while growth across London and the South East has slowed, there are still a number of property hotspots across the country that would create some value for investors, particularly in the East Midlands.”

She concluded: “We would urge anyone looking to buy a high-value property to speak to a specialist adviser to discuss the most appropriate options.”

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