Soaring London house prices ripple across home counties

26 March 2007
The impact of rising house prices in London is not confined to the capital, a study from Hometrack has found – it may also be spreading across the commuter belt through a 'ripple effect'.

In March, London house prices climbed by 1.8 per cent – a rate not witnessed since July 2002.

And special features of the London housing market, including the upward pressure exerted by City employees spending record Christmas bonuses, are taking effect on the wider region, the housing information firm found.

During March, Berkshire, Kent, Suffolk, Hertfordshire and Surrey all showed above average growth, which was at 0.8 per cent nationwide.

Outlying London suburbs saw house prices rise more rapidly than inner-city areas, too – price growth of 1.6 per cent in Westminster contrasted with three per cent in suburban Merton, 3.5 per cent in Sutton and 2.4 per cent in Brent.

"What we are seeing is a ripple effect," commented Richard Donnell, Hometrack's research director.

"Only a weakening in buyer confidence or a major increase in supply will see upward price pressures ease in the London market," he added.

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