HOUSE prices are set to rise more in Dorset than almost anywhere else in the the country, according to research.
A report published by estate agents Savills predicts a 14 per cent house price increase in house prices in the next five years in the region.
Just two other regions – the east of the country at 19 per cent and the south east at 17 per cent – are expected to see bigger prices increases by the end of 2021.
The research takes the average current value of a house in the south west - £239,000 – and predicts the average price to increase to £272,000.
But house prices in Dorset are above the regional average, standing in March 2016 at £313,054.
This means the price of an average house could reach £356,881 within five years, an increase of £43,827, or more than £8,700 per year.
The predictions take into account the impact of Brexit.
Chris Buckle, of Savills Research, said: “Our forecasts are based on Article 50 being triggered in the first quarter of 2017. They also assume negotiations with the EU are broadly positive, but result in limited additional access to the single market and beyond standard World Trade Organisation rules.
“But rarely, if ever, has economic forecasting been less certain. The myriad of possible Brexit outcomes means there are numerous divergent scenarios for the economy, which have the potential to affect the outlook for house prices.”
The report also predicts a decrease in the number of house sales nationally by 16 per cent up to the end of 2018. But this is when the housing market is expected to recover, with 1.24m sales per year by 2021, although first time buyers will still face ‘significant ongoing challenges’ in getting on the housing ladder without financial help.
In May this year, research by the Dorset Echo based on housing market predictions by estate agents eMoov suggested the average house price in the county could smash through the half a million pound mark within 15 years.
Weymouth and Portland Borough Councillor Gill Taylor, the spokesman for housing, said: “House prices in Weymouth and Portland have continued to rise over recent years, even when nationally they have fallen slightly.
“The major problem here is supply of houses which, as they are in short supply, ensure that the prices remain very high.
“This, when put against low average wages, leads to many local people not only not being able to get onto the housing ladder but also to find local private rentals almost out of reach.
“There is no easy answer. If the supply of houses could be increased then arguably this will help lower the prices however there is little incentive for house builders to do this and in some cases, on difficult sites, viabilty could then be an issue.
“WPBC has policies which ensure that affordable houses, which are houses rented out at a lower than average rent, shared ownership and so on are delivered, usually in conjunction with Registered Providers. Additionally the council is always looking at ways to facilitate an increase in the supply of housing in the borough.
“There is no magic bullet but developers are key and could start thinking outside of the box.
“Conventional builds have their place, but they are not the only type of construction and will not go far in helping Weymouth and Portland with this issue.”