|Buying of Chiswick Flats Other Than Penthouses Collapses|
W4's average house price moves back over a million
The average price of a Chiswick home sold so far this year is over £1 million again. Figures from the Land Registry show that the level has risen by 14.1% over the same period in 2018.
However, the rise is largely driven by technical factors most notably the continued fall in sales of flats in the W4 postcode area. Earlier in the year we reported on the sharp decline in this kind of property in Chiswick but, if anything, the drop has accelerated since then. Only 31 flat sales were reported in the first three months of 2019 which would be one of the lowest figures on record. The overall average is rising not because of a general increase in prices but because flats, which are normally cheaper than houses, are making up a smaller proportion of the total.
Ironically the highest price paid so far this year was for a flat with £2,750,000 changing hands for what is believed to be a penthouse apartment in Chiswick Green Studios in Acton Green.
Interest in larger family houses, which had been one of the more active sections of the market seems to have waned with only two of this kind of property selling for over a million compared to nine for the three months at the end of last year. Coutts bank’s London Prime Property Index, shows that prices of prime Chiswick property have dropped by 21.2% since 2014 with sales volumes dropping to their lowest level since 2013.
Only one new-build property was reported as being sold so far this year – a house in the Chiswick Gate development near Hogarth Roundabout.
Paul Cooney, Sales Director of Horton and Garton, says:
A local property expert told us when we showed them the figures, “For Chiswick, if you take out Help To Buy funded purchases, probate sales and high prestige property purchases then hardly any flats are selling at the moment. A relatively small proportion of Chiswick’s housing stock is under the £450,000 threshold for Help To Buy but the area has been hit disproportionately hard by the changes in Stamp Duty and rules on Buy To Let. There is no prospect of any of these factors changing in the immediate future but despair isn’t necessary as rents are holding up well.”
Commenting on the figures, Robert Gardner, Nationwide's Chief Economist, said, “UK house price growth remained subdued in March, with prices just 0.7% higher than the same month last year.
“Indicators of housing market activity, such as the number of property transactions and the number of mortgages approved for house purchase, have remained broadly stable in recent months, even though survey data suggests that sentiment has softened.
“Measures of consumer confidence weakened around the turn of the year and surveyors report that new buyer enquiries have continued to decline, falling to their lowest level since 2008 in February.”
The March 2019 RICS UK Residential Survey results show little departure from the subdued picture evident across the sales market for several months now. They say forward looking indicators suggest this lack of momentum is likely to continue for a while longer, although perceptions on the twelve month outlook are a little more sanguine. However London and the South East continue to display the weakest sentiment in terms of prices.
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Roughly speaking the post code sector areas are as follows:
1 - Bedford Park and the north side of the High Road
2 - The south side of the eastern end of the High Rd down to the river at Corney Reach
3 - The Grove Park area and over to Strand on the Green
4 - The west of Chiswick between the A4 and Chiswick High Rd - (a high concentration of flats)
5 - The north west of Chiswick - Acton Green mainly