House prices in the South double those of the North

17 October 2011

House prices in the south of England are double those of the North and Wales, according to property website

Its latest house price index reveals that average asking prices in the South are £336,743, compared to £164,347 in the North.

The monthly change in house prices also varies dramatically between the two ends of the country. Asking prices have risen by 4.7% in the South but have dropped by 0.7% in the North and Wales.

Miles Shipside, director of Rightmove, says: "While those in the affluent South may have cause to celebrate their prices being well up on this time last year, prices in the North continue to go backwards, leaving the widest price gap ever.

"For the average asking price of a property in the South, you could now buy two average properties in the North and still have enough change left to buy new carpets and curtains."

Unrealistic house prices damaging housing market

Long-term divide

Since the credit crunch in 2008, house prices have risen by 5.4% in the South but dropped by 9.6% in the North – and recent job woes are exacerbating this divide.

Six of the seven UK regions with the highest unemployment levels are in the north of England and concerns over jobs, particularly in the public sector have forced northern sellers to drop their asking prices by 2.6% over the past year. At the same time, southern owners have been able to push up average asking prices by 4.9%.

Burgeoning property prices in the South - and London in particular - are having a knock-on effect on the number of potential buyers, says Shipside: "With record prices in the capital, some [buyers] will be priced out of the best areas and will either have to stay put or look for value further afield.

"If they are looking to move to the north of the country, the growing price gap will let them buy a lot more house for their money


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