Housing: A clear priority for the Northern Powerhouse

North-west leading the way in UK property price rises

The north-west of England leads the way in house price rises in the UK, despite the national growth rate being at a five-year low according to latest figures.

The latest UK House Price Index shows that the region’s property prices rose by 5.6% in the year to July, compared to the national figure of 3.1% for the same period. The figures for the month since June also show a strong performance by the north-west, with prices rising by 3.4% in comparison to a rate of 1.2% nationally.

The report from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) shows that the average house price in the region now stands at £165,529.

Outstripping national figures

UK house prices rose by 3.1% in the 12 months to July, down by 0.1% on the previous month’s report and the lowest national annual rate since a rise of 3.0% in August 2013. However, with London seeing a fall of 0.7% since last July, the country’s overall figures could be skewed by the capital’s poor performance.

This perception is backed up by Suchit Sethi, founder of cashbackremortgages.co.uk, who says that the latest house price dip in London is “acting as a deadweight for the UK’s housing market, heavily contributing to the lowest combined annual growth in five years”.

“Without solid performances from properties in cities like Manchester, Birmingham and Bristol, the UK’s housing market would be in a much graver state than [at] present.” – Suchit Sethi

Commenting on the ONS data, Russell Quirk, chief executive of Emoov.co.uk, said: “While many will be quick to highlight yet another landmark low in the rate of house price growth, the bigger picture is that the market has firmly found its feet and is registering strong annual and monthly price growth.”

Homeowners are making gains

The ONS report shows that the average price of a house in the UK was £231,000 in July, which is a £6,000 increase on the previous year, so homeowners are still making good gains across the board. In England, this figure rises to £245,000, compared to £157,000 in Wales, £150,000 in Scotland and £133,000 in Northern Ireland.

Although the north-west’s property market is the strongest in the country in terms of house price growth, the average value of a house there still well below the national average, meaning the area remains ripe for anyone looking to make a property investment or get onto the housing ladder.

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