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Thursday, 24 April 2014

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Optimism in Cumbria as house prices are set to rise

ESTATE agents are optimistic about the housing market in South Cumbria, following predictions of a rise in property prices.

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HOPEFUL SIGN Estate agents are optimistic about an upturn in house sales in 2014

The Halifax bank has forecast house price increases of up to eight per cent next year, following on from a stronger than expected 2013.

Local experts agree that 2014 will see prices go up, following increases over the last few months.

David Corrie, managing director and valuer of Corrie & Co in Barrow, said South Cumbria was “catching up” with national trends.

He said: “Since the late summer, prices are steadily going up and the really interesting thing is that the prices paid are getting closer to the asking price.

“In our area, there has been some good news with positive employment announcements at Siemens and BAE Systems. I can see price increases of five per cent next year.

“Things are really picking up. Over the last six months we have seen the area catch up with what is happening elsewhere.

“Overall, it’s good news for sellers and mortgage rates, which will ease the pain for buyers.”

Between August 2012 and August 2013, the average price of properties sold in Barrow increased from £98,586 to £109,612.

The average prices for detached and semi-detached houses in the borough are now £188,667 and £143,833 respectively – both up on last year.

The Halifax says low interest rates will result in a similar increase to this year, which has seen prices go up nationally by around seven per cent.

Angela Cornthwaite, head of property at Poole Townsend in Barrow, said the situation in South Cumbria had noticeably improved only in the past few months.

She said: “These figures are often a nightmare as they are nationally skewed. Some boroughs in London had fantastic performances.

“We haven’t seen a massive increase in prices like others but we have seen a return in confidence.

“I don’t think we will see an eight per cent increase in the next 12 months, but I think there will be more confidence in the property market. We had a busy December.

“There are still obvious problems with mortgage availability and the deposits people need.”

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