north west house prices

North west saw strongest house price growth last year

Although average property prices edged down slightly over the course of 2023, there were some standout locations – including the north west – that registered growth.

In recent years, the north west of England has regularly been marked out as a top region for property investment thanks to its consistently strong price growth and rental sector demand, with an additional boost for the region coming from the extensive regeneration that continues to attract companies and people.

This part of the country still contains some of the most affordable property markets, leaving greater scope for price appreciation, and new research from the past 12 months has revealed that it continues to be ahead of the pack when it comes to the property market.

A new report by Yopa found that the average UK house price dipped slightly between January and December 2023, by -0.3%. However, the north west recorded the strongest house price growth out of all England’s regions, rising by 3.2% during the time period. UK-wide, it was beaten only by Scotland with a 4.3% rise and Northern Ireland (3.4%).

The best and worst regions

The report used local authority house price data released last week to work out the variations between the different parts of the UK, and found some vast differences. The results were evenly split, with six regions showing house prices rises, led by the north west, and six registering falls.

After the top three locations mentioned above, the West Midlands saw its house prices rise by 1.5% over the course of last year. This was followed by Yorkshire and the Humber with a 1.3% price hike, and the East Midlands where values rose by 0.6%.

After this, the rest of the UK was in negative territory. Bottom of the pile was London, where property prices fell by a huge -5.2% in 2023. The south east also struggled, losing -3.9% from its house prices, followed by the east of England (-2.5%), the south west (-1.5%), the north east (-0.9%) and Wales (-0.2%).

Judging by the results, the most expensive property markets were the ones to see prices fall furthest, which is as many experts had predicted with issues like rising mortgage rates and the cost of living crisis, as well as a more negative and unstable economic outlook last year.

Looking at more specific areas, the City of Westminster saw the largest price fall of -20.9%, while the likes of Kensington and Chelsea experienced a house price drop of -17.4%.

North west leads the way

By contrast, places like the north west, the West Midlands and Yorkshire and the Humber tend to have more affordable housing markets, meaning they are potentially less affected by high mortgage rates. These regions are also enticing growing numbers of property investors at the moment.

The top spot when looking on a more local level was West Lancashire in the north west of England, where house prices shot up by 10.7% in the 12 months from January to December 2023. South Hams and East Renfrewshire were also top performers, where prices grew by 10.1% according to Yopa’s figures.

CEO of Yopa, Verona Frankish, said: “In 2023, the UK housing market was predicted by many to endure dramatic price drops as the nation continued to endure the cost of living crisis, made all the worse with an increased cost of borrowing.

“But while a reduction in buyer demand certainly led to cooler conditions than we have seen in previous years, the result was a largely static market, not one in free fall.

“Furthermore, we see once again that diagnosing market health with the broad stroke of national averages fails to tell the whole story. Our nation is made of hundreds of local markets, and within many of them, prices have soared.”

If you’re interested in investing in property in the north west, or any other top-performing location in the UK, get in touch with BuyAssociation today, or browse some of our select investment opportunities.

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