Flat prices cheaper than a year ago

IN reference to official figures, buying a flat or maisonette in England is cheaper than a year ago, with the cost of semi-detached homes increasing fastest.

First-time buyers have been buying later in life and a number of buy-to-let investors have pulled out of the market owing to tax changes.

This may partially account for the 0.4% fall in apartment prices in 2018.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said, overall, UK house prices rose by 2.5% in the year to December.

This was the steadiest rate of property price growth since July 2013.

The general cost of a flat or maisonette was £226,247 in December, in regards to the Land Registry and ONS data.

This was a decrease of £883 compared with a year earlier, revealing – in part – the changes in the housing market as a whole.

Some investors have pulled back from buying properties, often flats, to rent, owing to extra stamp duty charges and reduced tax allowances for landlords. This may be a particular issue in London, where apartments are sold at a higher value.

Many new-build schemes aimed at first-time buyers, who are buying later in life, are developments of small houses. This may also reduce demand for flats.

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