Sea­side liv­ing does not have to break the bank

Kentish Gazette Canterbury & District - East Kent Property - - Front Page -

Al­though the idea of liv­ing at the sea­side is usu­ally most at­trac­tive in the mid­dle of the sum­mer, a new sur­vey con­cludes that many coastal ad­dresses missed out en­tirely on the boom dur­ing the past decade. Ac­cord­ing to Hal­i­fax, house prices at least dou­bled be­tween 2001 and 2009 in al­most half of all sea­side towns. The av­er­age house price in all sea­side towns in­creased by 92 per cent, out­pac­ing the 81 per cent rise in house prices across Eng­land and Wales as a whole. But prop­erty prices are prob­a­bly af­fected more by fickle fashion and ideas of trendi­ness at the sea­side than in­land. While Sand­banks, Dorset, and Pad­stow, Corn­wall, have seen house prices surge to 18.9 times lo­cal av­er­age gross in­come – en­sur­ing that most buy­ers come from the South East and other wealth­ier parts of the coun­try – the ra­tio slips to only three in With­ernsea, York­shire, where prices still av­er­age just more than £91,000. Other sea­side black spots in­clude Fleet­wood, in the North West (£107,400); Sea­ham in Co Durham (£107,500); Black­pool (£109,500) and Hartle­pool (£111,700). Even More­cambe on the North West coast, a scene of ex­ten­sive re­fur­bish­ment in re­cent years, has an av­er­age prop­erty price of only £120,800. By con­trast, at the top end of the sea­side price league sits Sand­banks (av­er­age £545,000), fol­lowed by Pad­stow (£422,000), Fowey on the south Corn­wall coast,(£336,000), Mil­ford-on-Sea (£335,000) and St Mawes. Prices in Rock, a Cor­nish vil­lage pop­u­lar with pub­lic school pupils in long sum­mer hol­i­days, top £314,000 fol­lowed by Lyme Regis, Dorset (£308,000); Sid­mouth, South Devon, (£292,000) and Poole, Dorset (£268,000). Since 2001, says Hal­i­fax, steep­est house prices by the sea­side were in Pad­stow (up 211 per cent; Pwll­heli, Wales (up 161 per cent); Sea­ham, Co Durham (up 159 per cent) and Wade­bridge, in the South West (up 150 per cent). Ac­cord­ing to Hal­i­fax, nine of the 10 leas­t­ex­pen­sive sea­side towns are found in North­ern Eng­land. The ex­cep­tion is Rhyl, north Wales. The largest rise on the seafront in 2008-9 oc­curred in Col­wyn Bay, north Wales, where prices jumped 10 per cent to nearly £163,000. Hal­i­fax hous­ing econ­o­mist Martin El­lis said: “Prop­erty in sea­side towns is of­ten very pop­u­lar with house­buy­ers. While it can be more ex­pen­sive than else­where, ex­cep­tional value for money can still be found for those search­ing to re­alise their dream of liv­ing near the sea.”

Sand­banks in Dorset, which has seen a surge in house prices

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