|City Bonuses Drive W4 Prices Upward
But 'first time buyers' strike raises some concerns
The release of the latest data from the Land Registry show that prices in Chiswick are continuing to rise with the top end of the market providing the main impetus.
Once again Chiswick prices have outpaced elsewhere. Over the last year (up to the end of September) the average property in W4 has risen by 9.3% against a 4.4% rise for the rest of London and a 3.5% rise nationally. The average home price in W4 is now £445,838.
However, the news is not so good for flat owners as the average price for this kind of property was down by 6.8% over the same period. The rises in average price seem to be being driven by increased volumes in at the top end of the market. 13 semi-detached properties in the Bedford Park area changed hands during the quarter at an average price of close to a million.
The City based investment analyst who compiled the figures exclusively for ChiswickW4.com said that bonuses in the Square Mile are clearly having an affect on the market but that most financial market professionals were now buying property on the basis of need rather than as an investment. The main cause for concern was the sharp fall in the number of flat sales which fell by 45.5% over the year. This could be taken as an indication of a first time buyers' strike.
The momentum of the market seem to stalling somewhat as well. Compared to the previous quarter prices have barely risen. Prices for terraced houses and flats are actually down.
Christine Fox, sales director at Faron Sutaria, has been seeing a flow of business that contradicts this to a certain extent. She said, "In terms of sales - we have 1/2 bed flats flying off the books as fast as you like at around £250-275,00 and 2/3 bed houses at around £500 selling like hot potatoes. £700-ish is sticky for the time being."
Volumes were better in the quarter with 247 properties changing hands up from the previous three months. However, compared to the same quarter last year when 365 properties were sold, the numbers continue to look bleak and some agents are reported to be struggling.
Colette Brown of local estate agent Propertygarden.com said of the market currently, "Chiswick agents are selling an average of a handful of properties a month - some more than others - but in comparision to the volume of instructions that's not many sales - if however the price is right and the property looks great then we still have clients fighting for properties - it's important to get good honest and seasoned advice prior to instruction!"
Geoff Wilford, Chiswick Sales Manager for Hamptons said, "Since opening our new Chiswick Office on the 1st of October we have been delighted with the number of buyers and sellers that have registered with us. We are experiencing that the number of buyers, across our London network of 17 offices, has increased by 50 per cent in comparison to the same period this time last year, and the number of properties on the market are down by approximately 40 per cent. "
Over three years property prices in W4 are up by 13.4% with terraced housing leading the way. Over five years prices are up by over 31.2% across the board.
Property Price Data
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
Property Prices in Chiswick Jul - Sep 2005
Property Prices in Chiswick Apr - Jun 2005
Source: Land Registry
Copyright notice: All figures in this article are based on data released by the Land Registry. The numbers are derived from analysis performed by ChiswickW4.com. Any use of these numbers should jointly attribute the Land Registry and ChiswickW4.com. Note these figures may differ slightly from numbers previously published on this site as the Land Registry has revised its historic data.
November 10, 2005