Towns OUTSIDE London where average house prices are £1m: Ripple spreads throughout South East
- Rise in house prices outside London has created 'million pound towns'
- Average cost of homes in Cobham, Surrey has now risen to £1.04million
- Beaconsfield, Bucks, now has average house price of just over £1million
By Rosie Taylor Business Reporter For The Daily Mail
Rising house prices have created ‘million pound towns’ outside London for the first time.
Three towns in the Home Counties now have average house prices of more than £1million, according to research by Lloyds Bank.
In lakeside Virginia Water, Surrey, the average home costs around £1.16million, while the figure for homes in Cobham, close to the Chiltern Hills in Surrey, has risen to £1.04million.
Beaconsfield, in Buckinghamshire, now has an average house price of just over £1million.
The figures showed eight times as many £1million-plus properties were sold in St Albans in Hertfordshire in the first half of 2015 as in all of Wales – 73 compared to nine
In lakeside Virginia Water, Surrey, the average home costs around £1.16million
Outside the South East, Edinburgh and Cheshire East saw the highest numbers of million pound homes sold in the first six months of the year.
Sales of £1million-plus homes in Scotland have more than doubled from 43 in the first six months of 2014 to 111 in the first half of this year, while Yorkshire and Humberside saw a 10 per cent increase.
Some 5,599 sales of properties worth over £1million took place in the first six months of 2015.
Two-thirds were in London, with one in 10 taking place in the London borough of Kensington and Chelsea and 9 per cent in Westminster.
The figures showed eight times as many £1million-plus properties were sold in St Albans in Hertfordshire in the first half of 2015 as in all of Wales – 73 compared to nine.
But despite some areas booming, there has been a sharp overall drop in sales over £1million.
Numbers for the first half of this year fell by 11 per cent on the same period in 2014. It is the first decline in sales since the first half of 2012, when the sector shrank by 7 per cent year-on-year.
The figure for homes in Cobham, close to the Chiltern Hills in Surrey, has risen to £1.04million
Beaconsfield, in Buckinghamshire, now has an average house price of just over £1million
George Osborne announce stamp duty reforms in 2014
Experts believe the fall may be linked to George Osborne’s changes to stamp duty brought in following last year’s Autumn Statement.
Under the new rules, buyers of properties in England and Wales costing more than £937,500 must pay more tax.
Stamp duty of 10 per cent is levied on homes worth between £925,000 and £1.5million, and it goes up to 12 per cent on properties over this amount.
This means that the top end of the market faces larger tax bills - for example a £2.1million house would come with an extra £18,750 stamp duty.
A buyer paying £5million for their property today will pay £163,750 more in tax than this time last year.
Sales of £1million-plus homes in London plunged 15 per cent year-on-year – the largest drop since the financial downturn, when transactions fell by 43 per cent, while sales in the South East fell 9 per cent.
But despite the recent fall, overall sales of houses worth more than £1million have soared by 264 per cent since 2005, according to the Lloyds analysis of Land Registry data.
Sales of properties worth £1million or more account for just 1.3 per cent of all national residential sales, although this share has more than tripled since 2005.
Sarah Deaves, of Lloyds Bank, said: ‘The number of homes sold for over £1 million has fallen sharply over the past year, with a pronounced slowdown in the prime and Central London market.
‘This may be the effect of the new Stamp Duty rates introduced last December and uncertainty generated by the election in May.
‘However, the regional picture is much more mixed and we’re seeing the emergence of towns where the average price is at least £1 million.
‘Whilst there are several London neighbourhoods where prices are already at this elevated level, outside of the capital this is a first.’