London house prices 'climb 400% in 20 years'

London house prices 'climb 400% in 20 years' [Photo: STUDIO GRAND OUEST via iStock]

The price of buying or investing in a home in London has risen significantly over the course of the last two decades, a new report into long-term capital trends from the Halifax has revealed. 

It said that in the 20-year period in question, prices in London have increased at a rate almost double that experienced across the UK as a whole. Between 1996 and 2016, the average house price nationwide has increased by some 251 per cent to sit at an average of £2,216 per square metre.

However, in the same period, those in Greater London have witnessed prices climbing by a staggering 432 per cent, with two areas of the capital even managing to achieve average prices that come in at more than £10,000 per square metre. 

Kensington and Chelsea tops the list, cementing its place as the most expensive area in the whole of the UK with a price averaging £11,321, which makes the area five times more pricey to buy property in than the national average. 

The only other area where property prices come close to this is Westminster, another Central London borough, where prices currently sit at an average of £10,552. All of the 17 areas in the UK that have an average of more than £5,000 per square metre at present are in Greater London, showing just how expensive the capital remains at present. 

Chris Gowland, mortgages director at Halifax, said: "There has been a marked widening in the North/South property divide over the past two decades as prices per square metre have risen by 432 per cent over this period in Greater London, more than twice the increase in areas outside of southern England. The consistent gap between southern England, led by London, and the rest of the country over the past two decades is a trend that has embedded itself throughout the last five years."

"House price per square metre can be a useful comparison measure as it helps to adjust for differences in the size and type of properties between locations," he added.