Average price figures are ‘useless’ says industry expert

Kate Faulkner
Kate Faulkner
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Figures showing average property prices are useless, according to an industry expert.

Kate Faulkner, who has written six books on the property market, including four for the consumer organisation Which?, believes wide variations between regions and within towns means the frequently quoted statistic is meaningless.

She said: “The regional data shows that property price averages are really useless as far as buyers and sellers are concerned. So the new communication job for estate agents post the credit crunch is to show local media and the public how much they understand property prices for individual properties on specific roads – using evidence from sold property price data which you can now use to give people property price trends dating back to 2000.”

Market analyst Hometrack reported in August that “house price growth across the London market continues to under-perform the rest of England and Wales”, while statisticians at Acadata stated: “Our regional figures give clear support to a view of a two speed market (or at least two speeds). In July prices fell or were static on an annual basis in all regions, except for Greater London, the South East and East Anglia”.

Meanwhile, the Land Registry reported that although prices in London rose by 3.3 per cent month-on-month, they fell in Yorkshire and the Humber by 0.6 per cent.