Rural Property Prices up a Staggering 30% Year on Year
Nowhere is the pandemic price boom more evident than in some of the UK’s most picturesque and desirable rural locations. A recent BBC expose examined the effects of the pandemic on the Yorkshire Dales housing market where desirable properties continue to attract dozens of offers within days.
Demand for such homes continues to outstrip supply by a significant margin, making it difficult for those residing within the region to relocate locally.
“We enjoy country life. We already live in one of the villages and would like to stay, but there is a lot of demand for village properties, and we are increasingly finding ourselves priced out,” Jonathan and Sarah Ratcliffe told the BBC, explaining that they would like to purchase a bigger home but simply cannot afford to do so.
Official Land Registry figures indicate that average property prices in Richmondshire are up almost 30% since the same time last year. This represents the most explosive growth anywhere in the UK, followed by other rural locations like the Cotswolds and North Norfolk, both having seen gains in excess of 20%.
Remarkable figures considering the turbulent events of the past 18 months, but a clear indication of shifting priorities among movers and first-time buyers.
All Eyes on the Countryside
The COVID-19 pandemic triggered a major rethink among prospective homebuyers with regard to where they want to live and how they see their ideal lifestyle. More people are working from home than ever before, meaning millions no longer need to live in close proximity to their prior workplace.
Combined with the temporary stamp duty holiday and the lowest mortgage rates in recorded history, a frenzy of buyer interest was directed at desirable rural properties throughout the first half of 2021.
Consequently, house prices in rural regions skyrocketed. According to the latest figures from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), available inventory across most of the country’s most popular areas is close to or at a record low.
“Anything we listed [from last summer] flew out of the door. Richmondshire property has always been where we don’t get too high on the highs and low on the lows. It was a massive change from what we had seen previously. This is unprecedented,” commented Irvings Property estate and lettings agents’ director, Margi Irving.
“We have definitely got a supply and demand issue. We have gone weeks, just like other agents, listing just one or two. People are reluctant to put their house on the market because they have nowhere to buy,” she added, explaining that the 100+ homes she had on her books a year ago had declined to little over 30.
“We were Britain’s best kept secret, evidently. Just recently people have realised you get really good value for money. It is a beautiful town. It has lovely villages surrounding it. The services and schools are very, very good.”