Subdued housing market can still produce hotspots


Halifax Estate Agents is entering the New Year with predictions of strong house price growth in parts of southern England and Scotland.

While the agent describes the overall outlook for the 2008 property market as subdued, it has identified 10 property hotspots.

In the past decade house prices have risen by 179%, from an average price of £70,000 in 1997 to around £195,000 at the end of 2007.

The credit squeeze and affordability issues have left the majority of property experts forecasting a year when prices will remain level or fall.

However, Halifax is putting forward the case that local factors will mean that in some areas the property price boom will continue.

According to Colin Kemp, managing director at Halifax Estate Agents: “Areas that are likely to record the biggest price gains will tend to be those with a combination of good transport links to a major conurbation and relatively low average prices. A number of areas will see a boost to prices as a result of significant infrastructure projects.”

For example, Hackney in London will benefit from regeneration projects that are scheduled for completion ahead of the 2012 Olympics, and a new high-speed commuter service from central London to north east Kent will put prices under pressure in Chatham, before it opens in late 2009.

In Scotland, Lochgelly, Paisley and Greenock could see strong house price growth because all three towns have good transport links to Glasgow and Edinburgh but have been experiencing lower than average house price growth.

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