RYEDALE HAS THE HOTTEST PROP­ERTY

Sharon Dale re­ports.

Yorkshire Post - Property - - PROPERTY -

OUR ob­ses­sion with prop­erty has prompted a plethora of house price in­dices that throw up con­flict­ing and con­fus­ing data.

This week, the Land Registry re­vealed that prices rose 1.7% in York­shire last year and 7.7% in London. In con­trast, the Na­tion­wide In­dex showed that prices in the county fell by 1.3 per cent an­nu­ally, while those in the cap­i­tal rose by 2.7%.

A far more re­li­able in­di­ca­tor of an area’s per­for­mance, ac­cord­ing to Lu­cian Cook, a di­rec­tor of Sav­ills, is the num­ber of house sales in an area. These are less prone to volatil­ity and mis­in­ter­pre­ta­tion. “The mar­kets with the most trans­ac­tions are the most com­pet­i­tive and will re­cover faster. These are the ar­eas where five-year price growth po­ten­tial is high­est. Ar­eas with low trans­ac­tions are those that are strug­gling,” says Lu­cian.

His lat­est anal­y­sis, us­ing Land Registry data, re­veals a North­South di­vide, not only in Bri­tain, but here in York­shire.

He com­pared trans­ac­tions in the third quar­ter of 2010 with av­er­age sales dur­ing the prop­erty boom, ie the five years up to the credit crunch in 2007.

The num­ber of sales in af­flu­ent North York­shire has fallen by around 30 per cent since the peak, but prop­erty trans­ac­tions in the Hull area have plum­meted by be­tween 55 and 75 per cent, while in Don­caster they have slipped by 59 per cent.

“It shows how the hous­ing mar­ket is much more de­pressed in some of the ur­ban ar­eas of South York­shire and in Brad­ford, Hull and Wake­field in com­par­i­son to the eq­uity-rich north, which in­cludes York and Har­ro­gate,” says Lu­cian.

“In the for­mer, trans­ac­tions are typ­i­cally less than half of their pre-crunch lev­els while in parts of the north they are within 30 per cent of their peak.”

The hottest sell­ing spot in York­shire is Ryedale, which takes in Mal­ton and pic­turesque mar­ket towns and vil­lages around the Howar­dian Hills and North York Moors. The num­ber of sales there are just 26 per cent less than in sum­mer 2007. It is closely fol­lowed by York, where trans­ac­tions are 29 per cent less. How­ever, if you throw prices into the mix, then York is the best per­form­ing area in the North of Eng­land. Ac­cord­ing to the Land Registry, prices in York are only seven per cent be­low their pre­credit crunch peak. Ben Prid­den, head of res­i­den­tial sales at Sav­ills York of­fice, says: “North York­shire is, on the whole, pretty re­silient. The real win­ners are the very best AV­ER­AGE sales com­pared with prop­erty boom Ryedale....................... York............................. Ham­ble­ton................. Craven ........................ Rich­mond­shire .......... Har­ro­gate................... Selby ........................... Scar­bor­ough.............. East Rid­ing of Yorks. Sh­effield ..................... North Lin­colnshire .... Leeds........................... Calderdale.................. Barns­ley...................... Rother­ham................. North East Lincs ........ Kirklees....................... Wake­field................... Don­caster................... Kingston upon Hull.. Brad­ford..................... ad­dresses and as­so­ci­ated houses. Beau­ti­fully pre­sented, key vil­lage houses in the Howar­dian Hills have held their value. Sadly, more prob­lem­atic houses blighted in any way, and in sec­ondary lo­ca­tions are be­com­ing more dif­fi­cult to sell. How­ever, the lo­cal econ­omy is less re­liant on debt com­pared to many re­gions, and as a re­sult, peo­ple seem less af­fected by the credit crunch.”

Ben says prop­er­ties close to Am­ple­forth School sell well and tips Helm­s­ley as a hotspot this year, along with Cox­wold. He adds: “Per­haps a less ob­vi­ous tip is Mal­ton. It is a tra­di­tional mar­ket town with com­muter­friendly rail links and with con­tin­ued in­vest­ment from The Fitzwilliam Es­tate. This could be a good place to buy in 2011.”

Sales vol­umes in York­shire aren’t likely to reach 2007 lev­els for at least a cou­ple of years and nei­ther will val­ues, ac­cord­ing to Sav­ills. Land Registry fig­ures show that prices in the three months to the end of Novem­ber were -13.2 per cent be­low their 2007 peak, com­pared to a fig­ure of -9.4 per cent be­low peak for Eng­land and Wales as a whole. Lu­cian Cook adds: “Over York­shire and the Hum­ber as a whole we are say­ing that prices could fall by about 6 per cent over the next two years, be­fore re­cov­er­ing in 2014 and 2015.

“Over­all, we ex­pect the re­gion to show rel­a­tively low growth of around two per cent over the next five years, but in the prime ar­eas we ex­pect a re­turn to growth in 2012 and to see 17 per cent growth over the next five years.”

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