England and Wales house price growth at four-year high
House prices in England and Wales have grown at their fastest rate in almost four years according to figures produced by the Land Registry.
The average property price in England and Wales is now £172,069, which is 6.7% higher than April last year, but still well below the £181,572 peak reached in November 2007.
Prices in London leapt by 4.2% in April – the steepest monthly rise – since records began in 1995.
However, the highest price jump over the month in the country, were seen in Gateshead and South Tyneside, where prices rose by 4.4% and 4.3% respectively.
The figures from the Land Registry are based on actual sale prices, comparing the price at which a property is sold with the price that particular property was sold for previously.
Data shows rise across the regions, including a 2.9% increase in Wales and a 3% in the north-west of England.
Whilst most regions saw growth in April, prices fell by 1.9% in the north-east, nullifying the 2.7% increase the region saw in March.
The more buoyant housing market has been welcomed as a sign of an improving economy, but the speed of the price boom has fuelled fears of a new housing bubble, particularly in London.
Peter Rollings, CEO of London estate agent Marsh & Parsons, said: “In the past six weeks, we have seen the wind change in the property landscape, restoring a new calm and steadiness to the market. Property prices have plateaued as more property has come onto the market; however demand continues to outweigh supply, in what is still a seller’s market.”
Earlier this week, the chief executive of Nationwide building society warned of a “natural correction” in the housing market.
Furthermore, the experts have cautioned that the property market cannot continue at this pace and is going to begin to slow down soon.
A total of 69,830 residential property sales were registered in England and Wales during April 2014. The cheapest sale for £12,000 was recorded in Bishop Auckland, County Durham. Whereas, the most expensive property for £24m was sold in the London Borough of Kensington & Chelsea.