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Race for WFH retreats puts 30% on property prices leaving locals unable to get foot on ladder

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House prices in the countryside are continuing to surge as an increasing number of city-dwellers flee to rural areas across the UK amid the coronavirus pandemic.

As the demand for rural properties continues to soar, prices in countryside locations have risen by an average of 14.2 per cent across the nation.

The biggest increases were seen in Broxtowe in Nottinghamshire, which saw house prices rise by 30 per cent, and Lancaster, Lancashire, which saw a price increase of 29 per cent, figures analysed by the estate agent Hamptons show.

The figures come after data showed that house prices have soared by almost 10 per cent over the past year as the pandemic boosts demand for larger properties and gardens.

According to the latest figures by Hamptons, the average property in Lancaster has increased from £219,760 to £283,560 while Broxtowe has seen its properties rise from an average of £234,150 to £303,780.

Also among the rural property hotspots that have seen their property prices increase are Tameside, Newport, Cheltenham, Harrogate, Bromsgrove in Worcestershire and Tunbridge Wells in Kent. 

Figures from the estate agents Hamptons have shown the house prices in the countryside are continuing to surge amid the pandemic, with Lancaster, Tameside, Newport, Broxtowe, Arundel and Harrogate among the hotspots

Figures from the estate agents Hamptons have shown the house prices in the countryside are continuing to surge amid the pandemic, with Lancaster, Tameside, Newport, Broxtowe, Arundel and Harrogate among the hotspots

This three-bedroom property in Lancaster comes with a large living room, modern decor and is currently on the market for £285,000.  Last year house prices in Lancaster cost an average £219,760 but houses have since seen a 29 per cent increase in the average cost and are now an average of £283,560

 This three-bedroom property in Lancaster comes with a large living room, modern decor and is currently on the market for £285,000.  Last year house prices in Lancaster cost an average £219,760 but houses have since seen a 29 per cent increase in the average cost and are now an average of £283,560

The property comes with a stylish interior decor, high end finishes and a living room that comes with a wooden floor and large windows that allow natural light to flood through into the room

The property comes with a stylish interior decor, high end finishes and a living room that comes with a wooden floor and large windows that allow natural light to flood through into the room

The three-bedroom home also comes with a spacious open plan dining area that comes with wooden flooring and a view of the garden

The three-bedroom home also comes with a spacious open plan dining area that comes with wooden flooring and a view of the garden

A Hamptons analyst told MailOnline: ‘We have run Land Registry price paid data against the ONS’s BUA definition (Built up Areas). This allows us to determine whether each sale is in an urban, suburban or rural area. It lets us measure house price growth rates across all three types of area within the same local authority.

‘While prices are undoubtedly rising right across the country, an element of this growth has been driven by larger homes being sold by affluent vendors.

‘This has serviced to push up average prices with fewer cheaper homes changing hands.’

According to figures, Tameside saw their average property prices increase by 29 per cent while Newport saw property prices increase by 27.8 per cent in the region.

Harrogate saw property prices increase by 27.1 per cent and Cheltenham also noted a rise in prices by 28.3 per cent. 

Meanwhile Bromsgrove in Worcestershire saw its property prices rise by an average of 27 per cent and Tunbridge Wells in Kent saw a 24 per cent in its average property price.

Data provided by Hamptons also showed the number of people registering to buy in their rural offices was up 50 per cent on May 2019, while city buyer registrations were up by just nine per cent over the same period. 

The figures also revealed that house price growth in rural areas was running nearly twice as fast as it was in urban areas (14.2 per cent compared to 6.8 per cent). 

Chris Morgan, 46, a sales manager who rents in Arun, said people moving from London had driven house prices further out of reach for those in the local area. 

He told The Guardian: ‘The only way I will get on the housing ladder is when my parents are no longer alive and I inherit their house. I could be in my sixties by then.’

Meanwhile Merryn Voysey, 32, from Cornwall, where prices have increased another 12 per cent, added: ‘I saw a bedroom in a shared house for £650 per month, but that wouldn’t be affordable for me at the moment

‘I could probably afford housing if I worked every day of every week but I want to enjoy my life.’

This three-bedroom property in Harrogate in North Yorkshire, where properties have seen a surge in demand, is currently on the market for £430,000. Average house prices in the area last year were £331,580 and the area overall has seen a 27 per cent increase in house prices. The average house price for properties in the area is now £421,300

This three-bedroom property in Harrogate in North Yorkshire, where properties have seen a surge in demand, is currently on the market for £430,000. Average house prices in the area last year were £331,580 and the area overall has seen a 27 per cent increase in house prices. The average house price for properties in the area is now £421,300

The property comes with a large living room that comes with a fireplace and large windows that allow plenty of daylight to flood through the room

The property comes with a large living room that comes with a fireplace and large windows that allow plenty of daylight to flood through the room

This property in Arundel, which is located in West Sussex, is also currently on the market for £400,000. The average house price for properties in the area last year was £300,220 but prices have now risen by 29 per cent, with the average price now costing £387,510

This property in Arundel, which is located in West Sussex, is also currently on the market for £400,000. The average house price for properties in the area last year was £300,220 but prices have now risen by 29 per cent, with the average price now costing £387,510

The three-bedroom property comes with wonderful views of the surrounding area and a spacious kitchen which comes with a fitted oven and stove

The three-bedroom property comes with wonderful views of the surrounding area and a spacious kitchen which comes with a fitted oven and stove

This three-bedroom house in Tameside, Greater Manchester, is currently on the market for £220,000. The average house price in the area for 2020 was £166,410 and the area overall has seen its house prices rise by 29.1 per cent. Average property prices now cost £214,840

This three-bedroom house in Tameside, Greater Manchester, is currently on the market for £220,000. The average house price in the area for 2020 was £166,410 and the area overall has seen its house prices rise by 29.1 per cent. Average property prices now cost £214,840

The semi-detached property comes with a an entrance hall, an open plan living room, three bedrooms and a bathroom

The semi-detached property comes with a an entrance hall, an open plan living room, three bedrooms and a bathroom

This property in Broxtowe, Nottingham, is currently on the market for £295,000. Last year the average home in Broxtowe cost  £234,150 but the area has since seen a 30 per cent increase in its average house price. Average property prices now cost £303,780

This property in Broxtowe, Nottingham, is currently on the market for £295,000. Last year the average home in Broxtowe cost  £234,150 but the area has since seen a 30 per cent increase in its average house price. Average property prices now cost £303,780

The house comes double glazing, off-street parking, an enclosed garden, fitted kitchen appliances and a spacious lounge area

The house comes double glazing, off-street parking, an enclosed garden, fitted kitchen appliances and a spacious lounge area

This property in Newport, South Wales, where the average house price last year was £234,310, is on the market for £299,950 on Rightmove. The area has seen its average house prices increase by 27.8 per cent in the last year and average home prices are now £299,550

This property in Newport, South Wales, where the average house price last year was £234,310, is on the market for £299,950 on Rightmove. The area has seen its average house prices increase by 27.8 per cent in the last year and average home prices are now £299,550

The country property comes with three-bedrooms, a renovated kitchen and a spacious living room that features wooden flooring

The country property comes with three-bedrooms, a renovated kitchen and a spacious living room that features wooden flooring

Earlier this month it was revealed that house prices had soared by almost 10 per cent over the past year as the pandemic boosted demand for larger properties.

The average home now costs £261,743, according to the Halifax bank’s May House Price Index – a new record high.

This was a rise of 9.5 per cent over the past year, meaning the average home will now fetch £22,000 more than it would have in May 2020.   

According to Halifax, Wales has seen the fastest rate of growth over the past 12 months. This is closely followed by the North West and the Yorkshire and Humber region as locked-down homeowners hunted for more space and outdoor access.

This property in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, comes with three bedrooms, first floor bathroom and rear garden. It is currently up for sale for £675,000. Last year the average property price in the area was £513,220 but properties in the area have now seen an average increase of 24 per cent and the average home in the area now costs £638,100

This property in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, comes with three bedrooms, first floor bathroom and rear garden. It is currently up for sale for £675,000. Last year the average property price in the area was £513,220 but properties in the area have now seen an average increase of 24 per cent and the average home in the area now costs £638,100

A step inside the property reveals a spacious living room on the ground floor that comes with windows that allow natural daylight to flood through the room

A step inside the property reveals a spacious living room on the ground floor that comes with windows that allow natural daylight to flood through the room

This three-bedroom property in Bromsgrove, which is among the areas that has seen a surge in property interest, is now on the market for £595,000. Data shows property prices in the area have increased by an average 27 per cent in the past year and are now an average of £516,860. Last year homes in the area cost an average of  £406,980

This three-bedroom property in Bromsgrove, which is among the areas that has seen a surge in property interest, is now on the market for £595,000. Data shows property prices in the area have increased by an average 27 per cent in the past year and are now an average of £516,860. Last year homes in the area cost an average of  £406,980

The stylish property features a large dining room, two bathrooms, a study, a cloakroom, a utility room and a living room on the ground floor

The stylish property features a large dining room, two bathrooms, a study, a cloakroom, a utility room and a living room on the ground floor

This three-bedroom house in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, is currently up for sale for £400,000. Properties in the area have seen an average house price increase of 28.3 per cent in the past year, with the current home in the region selling for an average price of £402,700. In 2020, the average home sold for £313,860

This three-bedroom house in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, is currently up for sale for £400,000. Properties in the area have seen an average house price increase of 28.3 per cent in the past year, with the current home in the region selling for an average price of £402,700. In 2020, the average home sold for £313,860

The property comes with a spacious kitchen that leads into the garden, double-glazed windows and a summer house

The property comes with a spacious kitchen that leads into the garden, double-glazed windows and a summer house

The Government’s stamp duty holiday, introduced when the pandemic hit last year, has also fuelled the rapid rise in prices.

Buyers will now be rushing to take advantage of the tax break before it begins to taper off at the end of this month, ending entirely on September 30.

 But the South of England, which has traditionally been the growth engine of UK housing prices, is lagging behind – especially in Greater London where prices are up just 3.1 per cent.

In November last year, a Zoopla report also revealed that the average rents in London are now 5.2 per cent lower than they were a year ago – while those in Birmingham, Manchester and Edinburgh are also dropping.

The Zoopla report said: ‘The rental declines in the capital reflect the changing picture on working and commuting patterns and tourism.

‘At the start of lockdown there was a shift from short lets to long lets, especially in the centre of the city, pushing up supply in the sector which is still being absorbed.’

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No reasons recorded for low rates of successful speeding prosecutions

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Fewer than one in five people prosecuted in court for speeding offences are being convicted, new data shows.

With a national average of just over 16 per cent, data covering a three year period between 2018 and 2020 shows conviction rates ranging from 7 per cent recorded in Co Mayo to 24 per cent in Co Wexford.

In total, of almost 60,000 court prosecutions, fewer than 10,000 concluded with a ruling against the driver.

While separate statistics show that 8,325 cases (14 per cent of total prosecutions) were either dismissed or struck out by judges, no information is available as to why.

“The Courts Service system does not record the reason a case was struck out unless the Judge includes the reason in their order,” Minister for Justice Helen McEntee told Social Democrats co-leader Catherine Murphy who had sought recent information around mobile phone use by drivers.

“As such, the Courts Service does not hold complete statistical information on the reasons for any case being struck out.”

Fundamental issues

However, Parc, the road safety advocacy group which has analysed the data, said such a gap in knowledge is among a number of fundamental issues it is to raise with senior garda management and the Road Safety Authority (RSA) in a forthcoming meeting.

“If we don’t know the reason why [cases are being thrown out] then how are we ever going to fix it,” said chairwoman Susan Gray.

“Why are they failing in court, why so many, why are some areas like Mayo recording so few convictions, why is no one looking into this? In Mayo where the RSA is based, [there was a conviction rate of] 7 per cent over three years.”

The counties with the four major cities – Dublin, Cork, Galway and Limerick – accounted for 24,387 prosecutions, or 41 per cent of the total, and had a conviction rate of 19 per cent.

Outside of those areas, the counties with the highest number of speeding offences ending up in court were Kildare (6,948), Louth (2,600), and Wexford (2,055). Despite being an outlier in terms of prosecution rates, Kildare saw a conviction rate of just 10 per cent, the third lowest of 26 counties.

Conviction rates were the highest in Wexford (at 24 per cent) but three quarters of prosecutions still fell down for whatever reason. Following Wexford, drivers were most likely to be convicted in Dublin, Donegal, Longford and Westmeath (each 22 per cent), Louth (21 per cent) and Limerick (20 per cent) but no other county reached the 20 per cent mark.

Drivers were far less likely to see a conviction recorded against them in Mayo (7 per cent), Meath (8 per cent) and Kildare (10 per cent).

Catherine Murphy said the data raised a number of issues and exposed a traffic penalty system in need of greater consistency and cohesion.

“There can be a huge differential depending on what court you end up in and that shouldn’t be the case,” she said. “You would expect to see this [conviction rate] almost the reverse way around.”

She said there was no reason why data should not be recorded that shows why prosecutions do not proceed, or fail and that the overall road safety enforcement system required a less fragmented approach.

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BNP Paribas REIM acquires Barcelona office building (ES)

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BNP Paribas REIM acquires the iconic office building “Tanger 66” located on 66 Calle Tanger, in the 22@ District in Barcelona, from Blue Coast Capital. This asset is an emblematic building and an architectural landmark in Barcelona, with a total surface area of 7,211m². It is strategically located in the 22@ District, which is one of the most sought-after office area in Barcelona and a European hotspot. The District 22@ is a neighbourhood that used to house industrial sites before becoming one of the most important urban renewal projects in Europe and being rehabilitated to provide modern and elegant offices designed to meet the needs of businesses. The neighbourhood is now composed of more than 1,500 companies specialised in IT, energy, design, media or scientific research and is considered today as a space for constant innovation.

 

The “Tanger 66” building was re-developed from a textile factory into the first LEED Platinum office in Barcelona by Blue Coast Capital. It is composed of 4 floors and an 800m² terrace garden in the upper floor. It offers modern working spaces with training areas, collaborative spaces, computer laboratories, an auditorium and a cafeteria. The building benefits from an excellent connection to public transportation with metro, tram, bus and train stations only a few minutes away. It is fully let to Hewlett Packard.

 

Jean-Maxime Jouis, Global Head of Fund Management for BNP Paribas REIM commented: “This acquisition strengthens the BNP Paribas Diversipierre fund portfolio and fits perfectly with the fund’s strategy by adding a modern asset, fully let and located in a strategic location in Barcelona. In addition, the building is certified LEED Platinum, therefore it respects the funds’ commitments and more generally the environmental issues targeted by BNP Paribas REIM, whose strategy is to accelerate its funds’ goals in terms of ESG.”

 

Fraser Denton, Managing Director, European Real Estate for Blue Coast Capital said: “I am delighted for BNP Paribas REIM in finalising this transaction. Our re-development of T66 is an excellent example of Blue Coast Capital’s focus on creating exceptional real estate and is a leading example of real estate repurposing whilst achieving the highest level of LEED Certification.”

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House prices shot up £25k in a year in November 2021, ONS says

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Property prices surged 10 per cent annually in November 2021, according to the latest official figures.

This marked a small increase in price inflation compared to October, when prices grew by 9.8 per cent, the Office for National Statistics’ house price index shows.

The average house price was £271,000 in November 2021, which is £25,000 higher than the same time last year.

Climbing: The average UK house price increased by £25,000 in the year to November 2021

Climbing: The average UK house price increased by £25,000 in the year to November 2021

The figures confirm that house prices continued to climb, even after the stamp duty holiday finished at the end of September 2021.

The tax break, which lowered home buyers’ bills by up to £15,000, contributed to rapidly rising prices after it was introduced in July 2020.

This was despite the cost of a home increasing by £10,000 more than the maximum tax break.  

The number of housing transactions taking place also increased in November, growing by nearly a quarter compared October according to HMRC.

However, it was 16.4 per cent lower than the number of transactions in November 2020.

This suggests that the slight dip in October following the end of the stamp duty holiday may have been a temporary blip.

Rise: The rate of house price growth ticked up in November compared to October

Rise: The rate of house price growth ticked up in November compared to October

The average UK house price has increased dramatically since the pandemic started

The average UK house price has increased dramatically since the pandemic started

Phillip Stevens, director of Richmond estate agency Antony Roberts, said: ‘It was business as usual in November as property prices rose again following October’s dip, which came about following the end of the stamp duty holiday. 

‘There is plenty of evidence that buyer demand remains strong, especially for houses, and with relatively little stock available it is a house seller’s market.’

However, experts said that the spectre of rising inflation and increases in the cost of living could serve to dampen the housing market later in 2022.

On the market: This four-bed, three-bath detached home in Kirkby Lonsdale, Lancashire, is on the market with Hackney & Leigh with an asking price of £745,000

On the market: This four-bed, three-bath detached home in Kirkby Lonsdale, Lancashire, is on the market with Hackney & Leigh with an asking price of £745,000

In Trowbridge, Wiltshire, this five-bed is listed for £610,000 with agents Kingstons

In Trowbridge, Wiltshire, this five-bed is listed for £610,000 with agents Kingstons

Buyers in Largs, North Ayrshire, Scotland can snap up this four-bed, two bath detached home for £299,000. It is listed with estate agents at Corum

Buyers in Largs, North Ayrshire, Scotland can snap up this four-bed, two bath detached home for £299,000. It is listed with estate agents at Corum

This Victorian three-bed is marketed with Starkings & Watson in Norwich for £375,000

This Victorian three-bed is marketed with Starkings & Watson in Norwich for £375,000

This two-bed cottage near Hereford is being sold by Chancellors with a £210,000 guide

This two-bed cottage near Hereford is being sold by Chancellors with a £210,000 guide

This depends to some extent on whether there are further increases in the Bank of England’s base rate, which would likely push up the cost of a mortgage.

Mark Harris, chief executive of mortgage broker SPF Private Clients, said: ‘There is further speculation that the Bank of England will raise interest rates by 0.5 per cent at its February meeting in order to counter rising inflation, and it remains to be seen what impact this will have on buyer confidence.

‘Squeezed affordability would be an issue, preventing first-time buyers in particular from getting on the ladder.’

Looking at the different countries of the UK, house prices increased 9.8 per cent over the year in England to reach an average of £288,000.

In Wales they grew by 12.1% per cent to £200,000, in Scotland by 11.4 per cent to £183,000 and in Northern Ireland by 10.7 per cent to £159,000.

The South West was the region with the highest annual house price growth, with average prices increasing by 12.9 per cent in the year to November 2021. This was up from 10.8 per cent in October 2021.

The lowest annual house price growth was in London, where average prices increased by 5.1 per cent over the year to November 2021, down from 6.7% in October 2021.

Despite being the region with the lowest annual growth, London’s average house prices remain the most expensive of any region in the UK at an average of £520,000.

Locations: Regionally, the South West saw the highest house price increases at 12.9%

Locations: Regionally, the South West saw the highest house price increases at 12.9% 

The North East continued to have the lowest average house price at £149,000, but prices still increased 8.7 per cent in the year to November.

The fact that the number of homes on the market is much lower than the number of interested buyers is another factor continuing to drive up prices, along with Britons’ desire to change their living arrangements due to the pandemic.

Nick Leeming, chairman at estate agent Jackson-Stops said: ‘Last year proved to be an astonishing year for the property market, with prices and demand defying expectations set by the pandemic in January. 

‘Whilst today we see average house prices up slightly from those recorded in October, the figures still reflect lack of supply in the market and are therefore impacting levels of demand in the year to November 2021.

‘It is evident that this imbalance between stock and demand will continue to underpin housing activity in coming months. 

‘This is reflected by what we are seeing across our branches where the complex and ongoing changes to the nation’s working patterns and lifestyle aspirations have only heightened the importance Britons place on owning a home.’

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