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Asking prices have increased across England and Wales but not in Scotland, according to the latest index to be published. Prices rises increased by 0.9% overall in England and Wales during the last month but the average annual appreciation for England and Wales is down to 6.5%, the Home.co.uk index shows. The firm says that this reflects increasing demand across most of the UK and although Scottish prices nudged down slightly they remain 4.1% higher than last year. The data also shows that the typical time on market for England and Wales has improved considerably. At 88 days, this already matches last year's post-crisis low and looks set to fall further despite the slower Greater London market. Supply of property for sale in London has risen considerably over the course of the last year, up19%. Correspondingly, marketing times have increased and the typical marketing time is now 60 days which is 13 days longer than in April 2014. Despite this, prices continue to rise at a rate of 13% per annum. Supply rises in other regions are either small or negligible and this is stimulating great price growth, the index report says. Prices are higher in East England, where the typical time on market has fallen to a new post-crisis low of 64 days. East England, the South East, West Midlands and the South West all showed higher monthly price rises than Greater London this month. Further north, marketing times are also improving and prices are nudging up as spring increases the market momentum. Overall, the current mix-adjusted average asking price for England and Wales shows that properties on the market are valued 6.5% higher than they were in April 2014. Homes might be taking longer to sell this year than last, but London’s property values have soared to new all-time highs and this month’s rise takes the average home to over £500,000. Also, the mix adjusted average price has risen by 44% in just three years, which equates to an increase of around £150,000. However, the market dynamic in London is changing and the same vigour that yielded such price growth is moving out to the regions via the Home Counties, according to Doug Shephard, Home.co.uk director. ‘The immediate future looks rosy for all of the UK, but much of this growth is based on debt at historic low rates of interest. And the music won’t stop until it appears that the debt cannot be repaid, although that moment seems a long way off,’ he said. ‘Leveraged property investors can take comfort in the fact that the Bank of England doesn’t look keen on increasing interest rates any time soon. In fact, inflation is falling to new lows and the Bank ‘stands ready’ to cut IRs should this deflationary trend continue for too long. So, for the time being, the sky’s the limit,’ he added. Continue reading →
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