Well if you had bought one in south London, in Dulwich to be precise, you would have seen its value rocket by over 800% to an average price of around £750,00. London prices have led the way.
1995 was the year the Land Registry started to publish data on house prices in England and Wales and they show that house prices have risen everywhere. There are big differences however and the Sunday Times recently published a more localised league table of prices based on the repeat sales of the same properties. So even within Dulwich there are hot spots near the college and village.
Nevertheless the top 10 hotspots are in London, usually on the outskirts where values were lower to start with, rather than the expected high price areas such as Chelsea or Wimbledon (where you might get more foreign or dodgy money fuelling the price rises).
What the areas doing best have is good quality housing stock built in the 19th century for the then well-to-do such as in Hackney Downs and Stoke Newington (both up 800%) in what was then the countryside. These were engulfed by the expansion of the East End in the 20th century and the working classes who forced out the professionals with the large houses converted into flats.
For professionals who wanted to live nearer their work in the City these properties became attractive again from the 1990s. The nearness to rail links is important along with other major infrastructure redevelopments.
So much for London but what about the rest of the country? Well there is no area that has not seen a rise in prices.
- Queens Park Brighton 582%
- Hove 545%
- Bedminster Bristol 532%
- Central Brighton 519%
- St Albans 452%
- Cambridge 418%
- Westcliffe-on-Sea 411%
- Winchester 408%
- Bath 404%
- Harpenden 400%
The lowest price rises outside London
- Halifax 150%
- Kirkby 150%
- Tividale West Midlands 148%
- Burnley 146% (see photo opposite)
- Kingston-upon-Hull 143%
- St Helens 140%
- Hartlepool 134%
- Blackpool 132%
- Bootle 132%
- Ancoats Manchester 125%
The Retail Price Index (RPI) has risen 72% over the last 20 years so take that into account when you are comparing then and now prices. Taking that into account even the lowest increase in Ancoats (where prices were hiked up by speculators in anticipation of Manchester winning the 1996 and 2000 Olympic bids and then crashed when they didn’t get it) is above the increase in the RPI with an average house price of just over £150,000.
Although the Sunday Times doesn’t comment on it (being more interested in London) there is a clear north-south divide between the two lists with old northern industrial areas struggling to recover from their post-industrial decline.
Source: Sunday Times 27 September 2015