Prices in prime central London reached new high in 2016

Prices in prime central London reached new high in 2016 [Image: AndreaAstes via iStock]

A new analysis of Land Registry data, compiled by London Central Portfolio, has revealed that average prices in the prime central London property market reached a new high of £1,818,262 in 2016.

The analysis also found that the last quarter of the year saw prices rise 14 per cent from the previous three months. Overall, the analysis found that 2016 ended with prices having risen by 3.75 per cent.

It wasn’t all good news for the sector, however, with property sales falling by 29 per cent, to reach a total of 3,330 for the year. This reflects the lowest number of transactions on record.

The fourth quarter of 2016 saw 118 sales, which was a 19 per cent rise from the previous quarter. However, it represented a 33 per cent fall from the fourth quarter of 2015.

Naomi Heaton, chief executive officer of residential experts London Central Portfolio, said: “Having taken a big knock following last April’s new additional rate stamp duty and the shock of Brexit, evidence of a recovery in prime central London in the fourth quarter is positive news.”

She went on to say: “As an international buying market, the weakness in sterling combined with the Trump effect and increasing instability in Europe, appears to have drawn investors back to prime central London as a safe haven asset class. The uptick has been led, in particular, by Kensington and Chelsea which saw a 24 per cent quarterly increase in prices.”

Ms Heaton said that although transactions “remain significantly down for the year as a whole,” it is important that there was a 19 per cent quarter-on-quarter rise in sales.

She explained that this “bucks the seasonal trend” when sales typically fall during the quieter period before Christmas and New Year holidays.