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First-time Buyer

Flat prices rise by £1,000 per month since financial crash

Joanna Faith
Written By:
Joanna Faith

Flat prices have outperformed all other property types since the financial crisis, according to a study.

The average price of a flat in the UK has risen by £86,474 (£1,029 per month) since property prices were at their lowest in late 2008 – from £150,749 in Q4 2008 to £237,223 at the end of 2015, research from Halifax found.

The 57% increase in the average price of a flat is significantly higher than the 37% rise for all residential properties over the same period.

It means buyers are on average now paying almost £20,000 more for a flat than for a semi-detached home, meaning only detached properties and bungalows command a higher price nationally.

Detached homes recorded the smallest rise (20%) over the past seven years, while terraced and semi-detached houses saw price rises of 38% and 34% respectively since 2008.

Sales by property type

Terraced homes (30%) and semis (29%) are still the most popular types of property purchased as in 2008. There have, however, been some changes in market composition over the past seven years, with an increase in the share of semi-detached homes (from 25% to 29%), while the proportion accounted for by flats has fallen from 22% to 17%.

This shift from flats to semis has been particularly marked for first-time buyers. Semi-detached homes have risen in popularity, accounting for 29% of purchases in 2015 compared with 23% in 2008. However, flat sales for first-time buyers have fallen from 32% of all property sales to 23% over the same period.

Martin Ellis, housing economist at Halifax, said: “Semi-detached and terraced homes have remained the most popular property types amongst purchasers, and increasingly so for first-time buyers. Whilst many might expect a flat to be the most typical first step on the housing ladder, it is clear that this is shifting with more and more first-time buyers bypassing this option, choosing a semi-detached house instead.”