Property news roundup: The most expensive terraced house in Britain
Plus, January jump in house prices, London's ripple effect, homes selling above asking price, and what else do you use your heating for?
Alex Johnson has been part of The Independent's online team since 2007. He has been writing about microarchitecture on his internationally-acclaimed Shedworking blog since 2006 and is the author of Shedworking: The Alternative Workplace Revolution. His latest book is Bookshelf, published by Thames & Hudson.
Friday 14 February 2014
This terraced house in Mayfair has 21 bedrooms and bathrooms, seven reception rooms, and a sauna. And costs £90 million
According to Messila Residential who are handing the sale, following refurbishment work it is now 18, 679 sq ft and also features a spacious mews house and garage (large enough for four limousines), as well as a new glass lift, swimming pool, sauna and treatment room.
House price leap
Home prices across England and Wales rose 1.5 per cent over the last month, the biggest monthly price growth since 2007, according to Home.co.uk. Greater London prices jumped 3.1 per cent. The report also shows that the supply of properties for sale is down 11 per cent nationwide since this time last year..
The typical amount of time a property now spends on the market has also fallen to 67 days, the lowest February figure since 2007.
Doug Shephard, Director at Home.co.uk said: "Home prices are rising unsustainably fast in London and the South East. Until interest rates return to normal levels and government incentives for buyers cease, we remain in an artificial market subject to the vagaries of government policy and economic tinkering on an unprecedented scale."
Meanwhile, the latest figures from LSL estimate that average house prices were up £1,348 in January, making the average house price £241,101.
"The UK housing market is roaring further back to life in 2014 ," said David Newnes, director of Reeds Rains and Your Move estate agents, owned by LSL Property Services. "Prices are now up 5.2 per cent annually, driving the price tag for the average home to a new high.
"We’re seeing a ripple effect emerging from London. Heat from the capital is emanating out further with traditional hotspots being the first to reap the benefits of recovery; particularly southern England and East Anglia before moving north through the Midlands. Although we’re still seeing a North-South divide, this is gradually being eroded. The West Midlands has this month broken the mould as growth has surged past the rate seen in the South West region."
Homes selling above asking price
The number of properties selling at or above the original asking price is increasing. Figures from the National Association of Estate Agents show that nearly a third of properties sold for the original asking price in January this year, with one in eight eventually going for more than the asking price. In September 2013, under a quarter of properties went for the original asking price and only seven per cent sold for more.
"Supply has once again dropped and the competition for the best properties is really heating up," said Jan Hÿtch, President of NAEA. "The growing number of house hunters in the market is causing buyers to react by offering asking price or over in many instances.
"With confidence in the housing market increasing we are seeing more people looking to up-size and invest in property. The important first time buyer market also remained strong in January, but if competition for property continues to grow and the issue of supply persists, many would-be buyers may find themselves being priced out."
What else do you use your heating for?
A survey into the nation's heating habits by Worcester, Bosch Group, reveals that more than three quarters of homeowners often used their heating for more than just warming their home.
The top ten alternative uses for heating were:
1. Drying clothes
2. Warming clothes, shoes, slippers and towels before use
3. Drying out wet mobiles, laptops and money
4. Defrosting food
5. Keeping pets warm
6. Melting butter
7. Proofing bread
8. Warming wine
9. Warming toilet rolls
10. Drying paintings, glue and artwork
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Windsor Castle overlooks this three-bedroom Victorian cottage located on one of Windsor's smartest roads
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