London property still the main driver for price growth

London property still the main driver for price growth

In the past few weeks, some reports have started to state that property prices in London are cooling off. While they are still headed in the right direction, the rate of increase is now far slower than it has been in recent times. However, according to new official figures, this has not stopped London from remaining the main driver behind the growth of the UK property market as a whole.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has revealed its latest data for the end of October, and it shows that in the 12 months to this date, the price of buying property in the UK has climbed by 10.8 per cent. While the majority of the country has seen some real strength in this time, though, it has been London where the largest price rises have come once again.

The ONS figures show that in the year to the end of October, prices in the capital were up by 17.2 per cent. Only the south-east also performed better than the national average, with prices climbing 11.9 per cent in the same time. 

Without these two areas included in the national average, the rate of increase looks a lot lower, with the statistics showing that it would have sat at just 6.7 per cent as of October.

David Newnes, director of Reeds Rains and Your Move estate agents, said: "The considerable uplift in values over the year to November 2014 has pushed the average price of a home in England and Wales above £280,000 for the first time. These figures are spurred on by London and the South East, where the housing recovery has been fast tracked."

He added that after a "temporary hiatus", wherein prices at the highest level started to stall, final sale values are rallying and climbing once again as we head towards the new year. 

Some of the more surprising findings from the ONS data include the fact that the prices paid for homes by first-time buyers were markedly higher than a year ago. Mortgages have been harder to come by since the Mortgage Market Review regulations kicked in this April, but first timers have still paid an average of 12 per cent more for their home in October 2014 than they did a year ago.