A facility allowing people to bet on whether house prices are set to rise or fall over the coming months has been launched by spread betting firm City Index.
The index is based on house prices published by the Land Registry and allows punters to bet on whether property values will increase or not in differing regions on a quarterly basis.
According to the firm, the product was introduced due to growing interest in the property market. The number of buy-to-let investors and percentage of personal wealth tied up in housing has increased.
Betting regions include England, Wales, Greater London, the South East and the North, with more specific bets allowed for different areas of London.
Duncan Anderson, equity trader at City Index, said the product is proving popular and most people are betting on a fall.
‘We set up the new product because there has been a lot of interest in the property market, especially with the expected downturn in house prices. Most people are betting on a downturn, with some predicting falls of 8%-9% in areas such as Chelsea,’ he said.