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Saturday, Oct 31, 2020

London house prices hit all-time high in post-lockdown property surge

London house prices hit all-time high in post-lockdown property surge

Surging London house prices have hit a new all-time high as the remarkable post lockdown property boom gathers momentum. The average cost of a home in the capital jumped 3.6 per cent in June alone to reach £490,495, almost £2,000 above the previous peak in July 2017.
The annual rate of increase almost doubled from 2.14 per cent to 4.25 per cent, according to Land Registry figures today.

Property experts said the pace is likely to accelerate further since the summer with the stamp duty holiday on the first £500,000 of a purchase fuelling further rises after it came into force in July.

However, the increases will dismay first-time buyers struggling to get a toe hold on the property ladder and young families looking to move to bigger homes.

The biggest annual rises were seen in Islington, where they shot up 8.7 per cent year on year, Waltham Forest (7.3 per cent), Kensington & Chelsea (7.1 per cent) and Lewisham (7 per cent).

Marc von Grundherr, director of agents Benham and Reeves, said: “We’re now starting to see the monumental increase in buyer demand that flooded the market in recent months translate into solid house price growth where sale completions are concerned.

"This is undeniable evidence that the market has broken free from the shackles of pandemic decline and has accelerated back to full health at a quite remarkable speed.”

North London estate agent Jeremy Leaf said: “These figures highlight the resilience of the property market and the strength of pent-up demand even as we were recovering from lockdown and before the announcement of the stamp duty holiday.

“We are being told repeatedly that this mini-boom will not continue as the job retention scheme unwinds and unemployment rises but we not seeing many signs of that on the ground.”

Jonathan Hopper, chief executive of buying agency Garrington Property Finders, said: “It’s official — for now, the surge in property prices is a boom and not a blip.

“While the rapid rise in asking prices might be dismissed as a frothy side effect of a newly reopened market, this Land Registry data confirms the early momentum is following through into actual prices paid. The scale of the acceleration can’t be overstated.”
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