17 Jun

North-south divide flips on property price confidence

We’re all familiar with the north-south divide in property, where homes in the southern area of England fetch higher prices than those in the northern region.

However, that divide is currently being flipped on its head with homeowners in Yorkshire and the Humber much more confident that house prices will rise while those in London can only see a fall in value.

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Northerners expect values to rise

Online estate agent portal Zoopla tested the sentiment of homeowners across the UK to reveal that confidence in the housing market is still high. Those they quizzed said they expected prices to rise by 4.8 percent in the next six months with 81 percent of people saying they think local property values will go up.

Digging down into the figures reveals significant variations between England’s regions.

A whopping 91 percent of homeowners in Yorkshire and the Humber predicted further property price rises.

But only a third of homeowners in London felt confident enough to predict the same.

Optimism high

The next most confident region was the north-west where 90.5 percent of homeowners believe prices will go up with 90.3 percent of Scottish homeowners agreeing.

Welsh homeowners were also happy to back the idea of growing prices in the property market with 89.5 predicting further growth.

Those living in the northern areas were also much more optimistic about the property market than those in the south who  were more likely to predict a downturn in values.

Laura Howard, of Zoopla, said: “Despite evidence of a slowing housing market and ongoing political uncertainty, homeowners remain optimistic about the future of property prices.”

Southern expectations fall

Scottish homeowners expect the biggest gains in property prices in the next six months, at 5.5 percent, followed by those living in the West and east Midlands at 5.1 percent.

But the least optimistic homeowners are in London where 32.8 percent say house prices will fall. They expect to lose an average 6.7 percent of the value of their property.

That pessimism can be seen across all of the south-east with 26.1 percent expecting property values to fall by around 6.1 percent.

Generatng demand

Zoopla’s Howard added: “A feeling of stability means buyers are more likely to start actively looking for their next home, confident that now is the right time to make a purchase. And, in turn, an active pool of buyers will encourage sellers to list their homes for sale.

“Measured confidence in the housing market is also more likely to see homes marketed at the right price, which by its nature generates demand.”