The latest house price data published on GOV.UK by HM Land Registry (HMLR) for November 2021 show that average house prices in the UK increased by 10.0% in the year to November 2021, up from 9.8% in the year to October 2021.
Figure 1: Annual house price rates of change for all dwellings, UK, January 2006 to November 2021
Because of the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on both the number and supply of housing transactions, we might see larger revisions to the published UK House Price Index (HPI) estimates than usual.
The latter half of 2020 saw the UK’s average house price growth accelerating. This trend continued into 2021; the UK average house price for November 2021 was £271,000, up from £267,000 in October 2021.
On 8 July 2020, changes to the tax paid on property purchases were announced with immediate effect in England and Northern Ireland. Similar changes came into effect slightly later in Scotland and Wales (15 July and 27 July respectively). In England and Northern Ireland, properties up to the value of £500,000 would incur no tax, while the thresholds for Scotland and Wales were £250,000. These changes in the tax paid on housing transactions may have allowed sellers to request higher prices as the buyers’ overall costs were reduced.
On 3 March 2021, an extension to the Stamp Duty holiday in England and Northern Ireland was announced. This meant that the tax holiday was extended until 30 June 2021, after which the threshold decreased to £250,000 until 30 September 2021. From 1 October 2021, the Stamp Duty thresholds have reverted to what they were before 8 July 2020. The tax holiday for Scotland ended on 31 March 2021. The tax holiday for Wales ended on 30 June 2021.
As the tax breaks were originally due to conclude at the end of March 2021, it is likely that March’s average house prices were slightly inflated as buyers rushed to ensure their house purchases were scheduled to complete ahead of this deadline. This effect was then further exaggerated in June 2021, in line with the extension to the holiday on taxes paid on property purchases in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Following a decrease in July 2021, average house prices increased in the months of August and September 2021, reaching a record level in September 2021 (when the last of the tax holidays came to an end in England). Despite a slight fall in the month of October 2021, average house prices in November 2021 of £271,000 are now just below this record level (£272,000).
Monthly property transactions statistics published by HM Revenue and Customs show that the provisional seasonally adjusted estimate of UK residential transactions in November 2021 is 96,290, which is 16.4% lower than November 2020 and 24.3% higher than October 2021.
Figure 2: Average house price, UK, January 2005 to November 2021
The average UK house price was £271,000 in November 2021; this is £25,000 higher than in November 2020.
On a non-seasonally adjusted basis, average house prices in the UK increased by 1.2% between October and November 2021, compared with an increase of 1.0% in the same period a year ago. And in addition, the average house prices in the UK increased by 1.4% between October and November 2021, following a decrease of 1.5% in the previous month.
Figure 3: Average house price by country, UK, January 2005 to November 2021
- The average house price growth in Wales increased by 12.1% over the year to November 2021, with the average house price in Wales now at £200,000.
- The average house price in Scotland increased by 11.4% over the year to November 2021, with the average house price in Scotland now at a record level of £183,000.
- The average house price in England increased by 9.8% over the year to November 2021, with the average house price in England now at £288,000.
- The average house price in Northern Ireland increased by 10.7% over the year to Quarter 3 (July to Sept) 2021. Northern Ireland remains the cheapest UK country to purchase a property in, with the average house price at £159,000.
Figure 4: All dwellings annual house price rates of change, by English region, year to November 2021
- The South West was the region with the highest annual house price growth, with average prices increasing by 12.9% in the year to November 2021.
- The lowest annual house price growth was in London, where average prices increased by 5.1% over the year to November 2021.
- Despite being the region with the lowest annual growth, London’s average house prices remain the most expensive of any region in the UK at an average of £520,000 in November 2021.
- The North East continued to have the lowest average house price at £149,000.