The proportion of homes sold in London was lower than in any other part of England and Wales last year and higher prices were to blame, according to a report Monday from Knight Frank.
Only 3.2% of all existing London residential properties were sold in 2017, compared to an average of 4.1% of properties sold in the entirety of England and Wales, the real estate consultants said.
The figure is a decline from 3.6% in 2016, while the average for England and Wales was down from 4.3% in 2016.
The drop in sales in the capital suggests that affordability remains a key constraint on the real estate market in the city, the report said.
“Average prices in London were 59% above the pre-financial crisis peak in February 2018, which compares to 18% in the West Midlands and -6.5% in North East England,” said Tom Bill, head of London residential research at Knight Frank in the report. “The clear message is that relatively high house prices in the capital are a contributory factor to the slower rate of sales.”
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Despite low interest rates and high levels of employment, higher rates of stamp duty along with continuing political uncertainty have also played their part in curbing transactions in the capital, Mr. Bill said.
With the exception of 2009, the proportion of London homes sold was equal to or more than the England and Wales average from 2001-14.
Wales had the highest proportion of homes sold last year, with 4.8% of the country’s homes changing hands in 2017.
South West England followed, seeing 4.4% of its properties sell last year. While 4.3% of properties sold in the East Midlands and the East of England.
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