House Sales and Price Statistics 2020

At GoSimpleTax, we support thousands of landlords with their self-assessments, and we know how in-tune they are with the housing market. That’s why we wanted to conduct a housing market analysis, comprising house sales totals and values.

We’ve dug up some statistics from the Office of National Statistics – released in July 2020 – which shows house prices and number of transactions for property sales in England and Wales. We’ve taken the ONS’ data a step further so that it is easy to compare region-to- region and uncover the potential best and worst places to invest in 2020.

The data compares values from December 2019 to December 2018.

Key transaction findings:

  • The report found that for the year 2019, 767,813 property sales took place in England, compared to 825,501 for 2018 – a fall of almost 7%.
  • It is the lowest level in house transactions since December 2013, although numbers have been dropping since 2016.
  • All regions of the UK have been affected, although some areas have seen a sharper decrease in sales, including London (-8.8%) and South West (-8.6%), while the North East (-4.3%) and Yorkshire and The Humber (-4.4%) saw a slower decline in sales.
  • The most sales occurred in the South East (132,015) and North West (106,238) while the least number of transactions occurred in the North East (36,587) and Wales (44,340).
  • There were exceptions to the rule, which saw a few local authority regions increase sales, including Craven (+3%), North East Lincolnshire (+2.2%) and Rotherham (+1.7%) in Yorkshire.
  • Flats were the most affected house type, with an average of 14.7% fall in sales across the UK.

Key house price findings:

  • While the number of transactions fell, house prices continued to rise. The average house sold in the UK in 2019 was valued at £243,950 – compared to £240,000 in December 2018, representing a 1.25% increase. However, this is a slow down when compared to the increases of December 2018 (+2.2%) and December 2017 (+4.46%).
  • All regions of the UK saw house price increases, although some have seen a sharper increase, including the North West (+3.1%) where prices increased from £161,000 to £166,000 and Yorkshire (+3.1%) where prices increased from £160,000 to £165,000. The flattest increase in prices was seen in East England (+1%) from £285,000 to £288,000. London prices increased by +1.6% by an average of £7,500 per property.
  • There were stand-out areas within the UK, which saw a few local authority regions increase dramatically, including Craven (+10.8%, representing £21,460 per property),
  • Harrogate (+6.9%, representing £18,725) and Barnsley (+4.61%, representing £6,000 per property).

House transaction statistics

The report found that for the year 2019, 767,813 property sales took place in England, compared to 825,501 for 2018 – a fall of almost 7%.

It is the lowest level in house transactions since December 2013, although numbers have been dropping since 2016.

All regions of the UK have been affected, although some areas have seen a sharper decrease in sales, including London (-8.8%) and South West (-8.6%), while the North East (-4.3%) and Yorkshire and The Humber (-4.4%) saw a slower decline in sales.

The most sales occurred in the South East (132,015) and North West (106,238) while the least number of transactions occurred in the North East (36,587) and Wales (44,340).

There were exceptions to the rule, which saw a few local authority regions increase sales, including Craven (+3%), North East Lincolnshire (+2.2%) and Rotherham (+1.7%) in Yorkshire.

Flats were the most affected house type, with an average of 14.7% fall in sales across the UK from December ‘18 to December ‘19.

This trend is also reflected when comparing the data from 2015 to 2019. In four years, apartment sales fell by -26.5%, whilst terraced house sales fell by -16.7%, detached homes by -7.1% and semi-detached homes by just -0.31%.

We asked house developer, Stephen Byram of SB Homes to comment on the trend. He said:

“For landlords who are weighing up their options when it comes to purchasing a Buy-to-Let property, it is important to know these figures, but not to live and die by them. For example, the trend shows that flat sales have fallen dramatically, but as a landlord, you have to look at rental demand. There will always be a case for rental flats, which are still very much in demand. Look at the area you are investing in and think about the target audience – if the flat has lift access, could you target elderly downsizers? If it’s in a city centre, there will be demand from professionals.”

House price statistics 2019/2020:

While the number of transactions fell, house prices continued to rise. The average house sold in the UK in 2019 was valued at £243,950 – compared to £240,000 in December 2018, representing a 1.25% increase. However, this is a slow down when compared to the increases of December 2018 (+2.2%) and December 2017 (+4.46%).

House Prices

All regions of the UK saw house price increases, although some have seen a sharper increase, including the North West (+3.1%) where prices increased from £161,000 to £166,000 and Yorkshire (+3.1%) where prices increased from £160,000 to £165,000. The flattest increase in prices was seen in East England (+1%) from £285,000 to £288,000. London prices increased by +1.6% by an average of £7,500 per property.

There were stand-out areas within the UK, which saw a few local authority regions increase dramatically, including Craven (+10.8%, representing £21,460 per property), Harrogate (+6.9%, representing £18,725) and Barnsley (+4.61%, representing £6,000 per property).

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