The average sold house price in London dipped in March to £472,000 as the capital's property market recorded the slowest rate of growth in five years, with Haringey the only borough to record double digit price growth.
Annually, house prices increased 1.5 per cent compared to the previous year, one of the slowest rates of growth across the country, where regions outside the capital recorded growth of 4.1 per cent on average to £215,848, according to the figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS).
“In a reversal of the normal regional pattern, the South of England showed some of the softest growth with price inflation of 2.8 per cent in the South West, 3.8 per cent in the South East and just 1.5 per cent in London. This is the weakest figure for London since March 2012,” said Richard Snook, a senior economist at PwC.
However, the average price data masked a wide variation between different parts of London.
The highest price growth was seen in Haringey, where price rose 12 per cent in a year to hit £571,500 thanks to buyers priced out of neighbouring boroughs.
“We’ve been seeing a lot of people buying in the east of Haringey, either moving across the borough from such areas as Crouch End and Muswell Hill, where houses cost £1 million plus, or moving from neighbouring boroughs like Islington and Hackney to find better value for money,” said Naveed Kazi, manager of Greene & Co in Harringay.
“We’re also seeing older couples downsizing to our area from Islington. They’re selling £2-3 million houses and buying three-bedroom homes here for between £700,000 and £1 million. That means they’re willing to pay the asking price because they’re still making a lot of money from the sale.
“Another reason prices are being pushed up in Haringey is because of our top quality state schools, which are oversubscribed and have catchment areas that shrink each year. If parents know they have to live on one of three streets for their children to get a place at their chosen school they’ll pay well over the odds.”
Havering, where Romford, Hornchurch and Upminster are seeing renewed interest from priced-out east London buyers, also saw a significant annual price rise of 9.6 per cent, to hit a new high of £363,000.
In contrast, prices in the City of London fell 6.4 per cent in a year to £744,000; in Tower Hamlets, where Bethnal Green, Brick Lane and Bow have been popular pockets of buy-to-let, prices were down 5.3 per cent to £444,000; and Islington, which has seen a huge appetite from buyers since it was the heart of New Labour two decades ago, prices dropped 4.8 per cent to £615,000.