Sarah Beeny’s online estate agency, Tepilo, looks at analysis of property prices in 2016, excluding London.
Tepilo's property price analysis
Where in the UK, outside of London, did house prices increase the most in 2016? Well, luckily for us, Plentific.com has helpfully updated its Property Price Index to give us exactly this information.
And it reveals that the year that we’ve just left behind was a productive one for a significant majority of UK homeowners. Ipswich, the county town of Suffolk with a history that dates back to Saxon times, finished in top spot in the Index, with house prices rising by nearly 20% (19.99%). In 2016, average properties in Ipswich climbed by £44,656.
By contrast, homeowners in Middlesbrough were much less fortunate – the large industrial town best known for its Premier League football team and its location on the River Tees was the only place in the UK to witness drops in house prices in 2016, with an overall reduction of -0.86%.
While London was excluded from the research, which used figures from Zoopla, the capital’s commuter zone remains the dominant force at the top of the Property Price Index table, with large price rises in Aylesbury (19.5%), Reading (17.06%), St Albans (16.68%), Brentwood (16.45%) and Bedford (15.71%). All of these locations made the top ten.
The only northern location to achieve the same feat, however, was Wirral – the peninsula in northwest England, situated across the Mersey from Liverpool, landed 7th place with an increase in property prices of 15.7%.
Five of the top ten areas for house price rises in 2016 were places with fast commutes to London, with journey times of approximately an hour by train. Road links from these destinations are also strong. Property prices in these commuter hotspots are expected to only be going one way in the future, with the number of people working in London increasing exponentially in the next few years and demand for homes therefore remaining very high.
Elsewhere, Norwich proved that Ipswich isn’t the only hot destination in East Anglia, with price rises of 14.85% during 2016. The old Roman city of St Albans, though, saw the biggest increase in terms of added value, with properties increasing by an average of £85,980.
Meanwhile, the only Scottish location to make the top ten was trendy Glasgow, which witnessed a price increase of 15.44% (with the average property rising by £24,485).
The north-south property divide is once again highlighted in stark terms with the “What’s Not” part of the study, with half of the areas in the What’s Not table hailing from the north. Although Middlesbrough was the only area to see a drop in house prices, places such as Salford (4.45%), Doncaster (3.99%), Rotherham (2.22%) and Bradford (1.56%) all saw fairly modest price rises.
Most homeowners across the country, though, will have seen their property rise in value in 2016, no matter where they happened to be based. That is unless you live in Middlesbrough, where the average property price dropped by £1,258.
When comparing the What’s Hot and What’s Not tables, it becomes clear that Oxford could have cause for complaint at being included in the What’s Not top 10, given prices rose in the famous university city by £22,481 in 2016. However, from a percentage increase point of view, Oxford languishes, with a rise of just 4.67%. This helps to explain why it ranks so poorly despite such significant price increases. Price rises were also squeezed in St Ives, Newquay, Aberdeen and Stoke-on-Trent.
Overall, the above research paints a very promising picture for sellers in the UK as we firmly encamp ourselves in 2017. Across the country, nearly all homeowners saw their property go up in value in 2016, and there is nothing to suggest that this is going to change in the year ahead. Only one location saw a drop in prices, and even then this was only a 0.86% fall, which is far from irrecoverable.
It’s also interesting, if unsurprising, to note the excellent performance of London commuter towns, with all the signs pointing to a continuation of this in 2017.
In essence, 2016 was a good year for property price rises, even allowing for the various challenges that last year provided. Barring catastrophe, sellers should be confident that 2017 will be similarly fruitful (if not more fruitful) than the year just gone.