The price of flats in England have fallen compared with figures an year ago, according to Land Registry
The price of flats in England have fallen compared with figures an year ago, while the cost of semi-detached homes are rising the fastest, according to official figures.
The sector also saw a fall in the number of BTL investors, owing to tax changes which means lesser choice for tenants across the UK, making it more difficult for those looking for renting a home and the first-time buyers are keeping their decision to step on the property ladder for a later time.
This may partially account for the 0.4% fall in apartment prices in 2018.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said, overall, UK house prices rose by 2.5% in the year to December.
This was the slowest rate of property price growth since July 2013.
The typical cost of a flat or maisonette was £226,247 in December, according to the Land Registry and ONS data.
This was a fall of £883 compared with a year earlier, revealing – in part – the changes in the housing market as a whole.
The recent extra stamp duty charges and reduced tax allowances for landlords, who often invest in flats for renting, has led investors out of the buy-to-let sector. This may be a particular issue in London, where apartments are sold at a higher value.
Many new-build schemes aimed at first-time buyers, who are buying later in life, are developments of small houses. This may also reduce demand for flats.
The price of semi-detached homes rose the fastest in England last year (up 3.3%), followed by detached homes (up 3.1%), and terraced houses (up 2.5%).
Overall, house price growth meant the average home in the UK cost £231,000 in December, which was a rise of £6,000 compared with a year earlier.
Chief executive of mortgage broker SPF Private Clients, Mark Harris said December’s figures confirm a slowdown in house price growth which is not really surprising given the time of year and ongoing Brexit shenanigans.
However, the picture varies in different parts of the country.
Property price growth was fastest in Wales over the year, while prices fell in the North East of England and London. In Wales, prices were up 5.2%, taking the average cost to £162,000, and down 1% and 0.6% in North East of England and London respectively during 2018.
With London property prices falling every month for the second half of last year, prices clearly need to correct, which is encouraging both for first-time buyers and second steppers trying to make a move up the housing ladder, Harris said. But he cautioned not get carried away as London remains the most expensive part of the country to purchase property.
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