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UK house prices soar by 236% over two decades as north-south divide accelerates

by: Edward Murray
  • 31/07/2017
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UK house prices soar by 236% over two decades as north-south divide accelerates
Average property prices per square metre in Hackney have increased by 753% in the last 20 years, according to the Halifax House Price Per Square Metre Survey. The research found that this rise of 753% was nearly twice the Greater London average of 402%.

Across the UK, the average price per square metre has increased by 236% over the past 20 years, from £672 in 1997 to £2,260 in 2017. The national figure conceals significant regional differences, with Greater London increasing by 402% in comparison to 147% in Scotland.

Nine of the 10 areas that have seen the biggest increases over the last 20 years are in London, with Hove the only other town to make the list. Outside southern England, 12 towns have recorded price gains in excess of the national average since 1997.

Russell Galley, managing director of Halifax, said: “Unsurprisingly, there are parts of central London that are substantially more expensive than anywhere else in the country. However, we can see several notable pockets emerging outside the South of England, particularly in the West Midlands and North West. Over the last 20 years the gap between southern England, particularly London, and the rest of the country has increased substantially – a trend that has continued during the last five years.”


Top and bottom

Kensington and Chelsea remains Britain’s most expensive area with an average price of £11,192 per square metre. Despite dropping by 1% since last year, the borough is nearly five times the national average and the only area in Britain with an average price above £10,000 per square metre. Twenty areas – all in Greater London – have an average price in excess of £5,000 per square metre.

At the other end of the scale, the research found that only two towns in Great Britain had an average price below £1,000 per square metre. Port Talbot in Wales is the least expensive town with an average price at £983 per square metre, followed by Nelson in the North West (£998). Six of the 10 towns with the lowest prices per square metre are outside England, with four in Wales and two in Scotland.


Scotland trends

North of the border, the Bank of Scotland House Price Per Square Metre Survey found that Edinburgh is Scotland’s most expensive city at £2,492 per square metre, compared to the Scottish average of £1,529. Edinburgh is the only town in Scotland to have an average house price per square metre higher than the British average of £2,260.

Wishaw in North Lanarkshire is the least expensive town with an average price at £1,027 per square metre.

Graham Blair, mortgages director, Bank of Scotland, said: “Edinburgh and the east coast are more expensive than western and central areas, however we can see a number of notable pockets emerging in the Highlands.”

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