The exodus begins! Unaffordable house prices drive people out of London – 50 percent snub

House prices: Expert discusses 'interesting' pricing differences

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While London remains the most searched location according to Rightmove Londoners themselves are frequently looking beyond the city. According to research by property concierge platform Moveable, 50 percent of Londoners no longer want to buy in the city and instead are looking at cheaper rural locations. With the rise of remote working Moveable found 41 percent of home movers are no longer considering commute times when searching for a property. Outside space has now become one of the biggest considerations with 63 percent rating this as the most important factor.

The trend is also not just limited to London with 41 percent of homeowners across UK cities considering moving to the countryside in the next year.

Creator of Moveable, Simon Bath, commented: “With the New Year upon us, it seems likely that we will start to see London become emptier, as prospective homebuyers have had a shift in prerequisites for what they need in a home, now looking for larger spaces.

“With a majority planning on moving out of London, it is important to consider moving costs to ensure that there are no hidden frees in providers and services who are capitalising on a potential surge.”

The findings come as data out from Rightmove today also revealed the surging interest in country living.

Searches grew considerably in villages or areas near the sea with Rhos On Sea in Wales topping the list of buyer hotspots with searches up 858 percent compared to 2020.

Hove in East Sussex came next with searches up 680 percent while Chadlington in the Cotswolds was the third biggest hotspot, up 211 percent.

The area was thrust into public attention by the success of TV show Clarkson’s Farm which is set nearby.

While London still showed the highest number of searches the cap between it and Cornwall has narrowed considerably to just three percent compared to 26 percent in 2020 and 49 percent in 2019.

According to Halifax’s recent house price index the UK’s nations and regions outside London are now showing the fastest levels of price growth.

Wales and Northern Ireland have both shown double digit growth in 2021 while in England the North West saw prices rise 11.8 percent.

Meanwhile London lagged behind with growth of only 2.1 percent.

With average property prices over £500k though London still remains way ahead of national averages.

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2021 proved a record year overall for property prices with Moveable noting average homes are now £28,000 more expensive than last June with moving costs also increasing.

A large part of the surge in prices was driven by the Government’s stamp duty holiday which saw buyers rushing to complete purchases before the end of the discount period in September.

With 2022 potentially seeing rising interest rates and strains on household budgets from inflation many analysts predict some heat will be taken out of the market.

However supply remains a key factor with the number of new properties becoming available being constrained by shortages of building materials and labour.

Consequently a major fall in prices has been widely seen as unlikely.

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