House prices rise by £65 each day

For sale signsBritain's homes have added £65 a day to their value over the last three months as the housing market revival continues, a property website has reported.

A typical rise of 2.6% or £5,899 to the typical house price in the second quarter of this year has pushed the total value of the country's housing stock to £6.2 trillion, according to Zoopla's estimates.
All regions across Britain saw increases of at least 2% to property prices in the last three months, marking the first time this has happened since the financial downturn as confidence flows back into the market, Zoopla's report said. The average value of a house in Britain now stands at £235,912.

In cash terms, London outperformed the rest of the country with a typical £12,610 increase to the value of properties over the second quarter. But looking at percentage increases, the East Midlands, Yorkshire and Wales recorded the strongest rises.

Ellesmere in Shropshire, Ripon in North Yorkshire and Snodland in Kent were named as Britain's property hotspots, all recording house price increases above 3.2% in the last three months.

Despite the strength of the London market, no areas in the English capital made Zoopla's top 10 "best-performing places" list. Many of the places with the biggest percentage jumps had below-average house prices, such as Rhyl in North Wales and Mirfield in West Yorkshire.

At the other end of the scale, Glenrothes, Fife, Heywood in Greater Manchester and Spennymoor in County Durham were named as the worst-performing areas by Zoopla, although even they saw house prices increase, albeit at half the pace of the areas which recorded the biggest rises.

The upturn in the housing market has been surpassing experts' expectations amid signs that lenders are offering more attractive mortgage deals and also appear more willing to lend to people with low deposits. Lenders have been reporting a surge in first-time buyers coming into the market in recent months, which should help to free up some stuck chains.

Much of the widened mortgage availability has been put down to Government schemes such as Funding for Lending, which gives lenders access to cheap finance to help borrowers, as well as initiatives such as NewBuy and Help to Buy, which are targeted at helping people with small deposits.

Sellers are also appearing more bullish about sticking to their asking prices, which is thought to be partly due to a shortage of homes for potential buyers to choose from.

The people who affect house prices
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House prices rise by £65 each day

They have the power to push a price higher, depending on how many other people are in the running for a home and how liberal they want to be with the truth to the buyers. In some cases, they can also do more harm than good by initially overvaluing a property. The worst case scenario is the home eventually sells for less than it would have done had it been priced realistically in the first place.

Sometimes a quick-moving solicitor can be the difference between getting the home at the price you want and getting into a bidding war or missing out entirely. If the buyer needs a quick sale, they're more likely to do a deal with someone who has a flexible solicitor who can push through the sale so it suits them.

Research by Halifax concluded that anti-social neighbours could take £31,000 off the price of an average home. If you’re selling, you should declare any problems you’ve had on a Seller’s Property Information Form, otherwise you could face a claim later on.

While an increase in Council Tax might not be too much of a deterrent to a potential buyer, plans to grant permission for new homes, a mobile phone mast or wind turbines could knock an asking price down. If you're a buyer, the local council should have details of any future planning applications and you can search them for a small fee.

A lot of traffic in an area obviously has an effect on air quality. Since 1997 each local authority in the UK has carried out studies of the air quality in its area. If an area falls below a national benchmark for air quality, it has to be declared an Air Quality Management Area (AQMA). Some residents of the Llandaff area of Cardiff expressed concern that it had become an AQMA due to an increase in traffic in the area. Whether this becomes a widespread issue remains to be seen.

Mortgage availability is a key driver of property prices. If no-one can take out a mortgage, then prices will stall and eventually fall. We've seen this happen in parts of the UK in recent years, as lenders tightened up their criteria following the credit crunch. Conversely, good mortgage availability will mean more people are competing for properties - to a seller's advantage if their home is desirable.

An outstanding local school can add around 8% to the value of a home, according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. On the flipside, a not so good Ofsted report can take off a similar amount. If you’re concerned about a school’s performance, one way to get involved is to become a governor.

Initiatives such as the Help To Buy scheme have been credited with pushing house prices up. A buoyant economy with strong employment gives people the confidence to buy and leads to an upward shift in house prices, while rises in unemployment have the reverse effect. Planning restrictions, at both a national and local government level, affect the number of homes in a particular area.


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