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Where are the nosiest neighbours in Britain?

Reading is the town with Britain’s nosiest neighbours, at least according to figures just released by Zoopla.

But we’re not talking about twitching curtains, sophisticated surveillance devices or even just turning the TV down to listen when there’s an argument next door. The measure of curiosity is Zoopla’s estimates tool, and how people are using it to get an instant valuation on a nearby house after it’s gone on the market.

South tops the nosiness list

And it turns out that residents in the town to the west of London are looking for a valuation at 47% above the countrywide average. The south of England dominates the Zoopla top 10 nosiest towns list, with Milton Keynes second on 43% and the residents of nearby Bedford also score well on the inquisitiveness front with a return of 37%.

Is there something in the water that makes the people of Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Bedfordshire scrutinize the local market? Zoopla record that the average price in Reading is a touch over £422,000 while in Milton Keynes and Bedford that figure is £306,000 and £329,000 respectively.

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All three towns have recorded falls in value of between 1% and 2%, but further down the list are two interesting examples of where prices have risen to take neighbourly nosiness upwards.

Stockport and Newport on the up and up

Stockport’s neighbours are 17% more interested in local properties than the national average, with a home in the town near Manchester averaging at £266,000. That’s 1.2% than higher than a year ago and taps into a feeling that the area is on the rise. The town centre is seeing the start of a number of developments to attract residents, Manchester is an easy commute and it was recently found to be the second-best buy-to-let investment area in England and Wales.

Newport has seen a 4.1% price rise in 2018 to see houses valued at an average of £181,000. The Welsh city’s proximity to the Severn River crossings now that they are toll-free has seen interest on the rise, and its residents match Stockport in Zoopla’s nosiness charts on 17% above the national average.

Zoopla’s research also found that one third of Britons already know precisely the street or house they want to move to. At the other end of the scale, people in Middlesbrough are the least likely to look up local property values.

Rank Post town Valuations run (above British average) Average property price Increase/decrease in average property value in last 12 months
1 Reading 47% £422,153 -1.80%
2 Milton Keynes 43% £306,453 -1.40%
3 Bedford 37% £328,873 -1.00%
4 Swindon 25% £260,003 0.20%
5 Colchester 20% £323,626 0.70%
6 Cambridge 19% £458,482 -1.00%
7 Stockport 17% £266,979 1.20%
8 Newport 17% £181,787 4.10%
9 Bournemouth 15% £306,289 3.00%
10 Coventry 14% £211,600 -0.90%

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