London market lifts asking prices to a record high
Housing market confidence among sellers is booming, according to figures published today by property site Rightmove.
Meanwhile, a rival survey suggests mortgage demand is climbing. Taken together, the two offer hopes of a nascent recovery – but only in London and certain hotspots across the country.
Average property asking prices soared to a record in April, reaching £243,737. The previous peak of £242,410 was reached in May 2008. However, the research reveals a widening north-south divide in sentiment.
London asking prices have climbed by more than retail price inflation in the last four years, but asking prices have fallen in the rest of the country.
London prices have increased 14.9 per cent to £464,944, well above the retail price inflation over the period of 11.5 per cent. But in the rest of the country prices have slumped 4.3 per cent.
It means the national asking price has actually fallen 9.9 per cent in real terms since May 2008. Miles Shipside, director of Rightmove, said: "This is not a universal sign of a housing market recovery. The richest seams of housing market activity are concentrated around those with access to cash and finance, with a strong bias to the south and London in particular."
Separate findings published today reveal that while mortgage rates are creeping up, that has not slowed demand. The number of mortgage applications rose by 5 per cent in March against the same time a year earlier, according to the Mortgage Advice Bureau. That's despite interest rate rises across the mortgage market, with the average two-year fixed mortgage at 4.15 per cent, up from 3.82 per cent in October, adding over £300 a year to a £150,000 mortgage, according to comparison site Moneysupermarket.
- 1 Nigel Farage: Me vs Russell Brand on Question Time – he's got the chest hair but where are his ideas?
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Weather bomb in pictures: Storms cuts power for tens of thousands – and snow is on the way
Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
Russell Brand was rendered speechless on Question Time by this man
Fury at Airbus after it hints the super-jumbo may be mothballed
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Shock poll shows voters believe Ukip is to the left of the Tories
Nigel Farage's approval rating hits 'record low' as popularity suffers in wake of Ukip sex scandal
Ukip candidate jokes about 'shooting peasants' in racist and homophobic rant
Pakistan school attack live: Taliban kill at least 132 children in 'horrifying' massacre
Germany sees 'visible rise' in support for far-right extremism in response to perceived 'Islamisation' of the West
iJobs Money & Business
£32000 - £35000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Services Manage...
£Neg. (DOE) + Excellent Benefits: Guru Careers: A Finance Account Manager with...
£40000 - £470000 per annum + bonus: Ashdown Group: Java Developer / J2EE Devel...
£45000 - £55000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: An exciting opportunity h...