Southend-on-Sea has claimed the highest rise in house prices during 2012 – of 14.8%. The year-on-year increase in the Essex resort took the average selling price to £198,418, according to a roundup of the year by Halifax.
The top five towns for house price rises in 2012 are in southeast England and only two in the top 10 – Lowestoft in East Anglia and the university city of Durham in the north – are outside London and the southeast. Nationally, house prices will remain stable in 2013.
Again, prices are expected to be strongest in London and the southeast where the economy has been most buoyant.
Hometrack’s, the property analytics business, latest survey showed prices rising in most districts across London and much of the southwest while house prices in the north and Midlands fell during 2012. The biggest falls were recorded in Craigavon in Northern Ireland and Wishaw in Scotland, where prices fell 18.4% and 12.5% respectively.
Southend is “particularly less expensive” than London, Halifax said, and also offers the attractions of living by the sea.
Basingstoke is only just behind Southend in the top 10, with price rises of 14.7%, while the average house costs £220,000 in the Hampshire town. Of the top 10 climbers, St Albans had the highest house prices with an average of £371,131 after a 13% rise during the year.
The 18.4% fall in prices in Craigavon took the cost of an average house to £91,520. Only one town – Grays, also in Essex – in the top 10 biggest falls is in the southeast. All the others are in Scotland or the north and northwest of England.
Halifax based its review on changes in the 12 months to November. The mortgage lender has previously stated that house prices are likely to be flat next year, with any growth likely to be strongest in London and the South East.
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