Housing crisis: Prices have risen considerably more in Wales than elsewhere, new figures reveal
House prices have risen considerably more in Wales than elsewhere in the UK over the past five years, new figures released today have revealed.
Prices in Wales have risen by 35.1% over the past five years, 5.4% more than any other nation or region.
The East Midlands saw the second biggest rise in prices at 29.7%, while London saw the smallest at 6.5%. The average across the UK was 21.5%.
Wales also saw the largest house price increase over the past year at 11.8%, figures by the property website Zoopla show.
Ballooning house prices show no sign of slowing down, they said, as almost a third more sales were agreed in the first three months of 2022 compared to pre-pandemic levels.
Buyer appetite remained “unseasonably strong”, despite predictions the market would begin to cool this year, Zoopla added.
Gráinne Gilmore, of Zoopla, said: “Demand is strongest for family houses and more than twice as high as usual for this time of the year.
“But demand is up across nearly all property types, indicating that those thinking of moving are in pole position to sell.”
But she added: “The increased economic headwinds, including the rising costs of living and increasing mortgage rates, property price growth will start to moderate as we move through the second half of 2022.”
Last month the Welsh Government announced that the maximum tax hike on second homes is set to be raised to a whopping 300%.
The move is to tackle the negative impact vacant houses, holiday lets and soaring property prices are having on local communities.
It is part of a series of measures set out in the Co-operation Agreement between the Welsh Government and Plaid Cymru.
Councils across Wales will be able set the premium at any level up to the maximum, from April 2023.
The maximum premium councils can charge at the moment is 100%, which means the new measure could lead to a possible tax rise of 200%.
It will be possible to apply different rates for second homes and long-term empty dwellings.
Plaid Cymru’s Lead Designated Member Sian Gwenllian MS said: “It is clear that we as a country are facing a housing crisis. So many people cannot afford to live in their local areas, and the situation has worsened during the pandemic.
“These changes will make a difference, enabling councils to respond to their local circumstances and start to close the loophole in the current law. It’s a first but important step on a journey towards a new housing system that ensures that people have the right to live in their community.”
Climate change minister Julie James said: “We want people to be able to live and work in their local communities, but we know rising house prices are putting them out of reach of many people, exacerbated by the cost-of-living crisis we are facing.
“There is no easy answer or quick-fix solution. This is a complex problem that requires a wide range of actions.
“We continue to carefully consider further measures that could be introduced, and these changes are the latest steps we are taking to increase the availability of homes and ensure a fair contribution is made.”
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