English market town house buyers will pay average premium of £34,000 on neighbouring areas

24th October 2016

Homebuyers looking to live in one of England’s picturesque market towns will need to pay a premium of £34,000 compared to neighbouring areas according to latest research from Lloyds Bank.

Market town homeowners pay a premium of almost £34,000 compared to their neighbours but for one in five towns the premium is around £100,000.

Beaconsfield in South Buckinghamshire – close to the Chiltern Hills and within a 40 minute commute to London – is the most expensive English market town with an average house price of £958,909. Henley-on-Thames in Oxfordshire (£748,001) and Alfresford in Hampshire (£492,645) are the next most expensive market towns in England.

Outside southern England, Lymm is the most expensive market town with an average property value of £355,819.

For homebuyers looking for more affordable market town living, the average price of a market town is much lower in parts of northern England.  Ferryhill with an average property value of £93,291 and Crook (£108,603), both in Durham, are the least expensive market towns. Four of the five least expensive market towns surveyed are in Durham.

House prices in market towns across England are, on average, £33,911 (or 14%) higher than their county average.

The horse racing market town of Wetherby has the next highest premium to county house price with an average house price that is double (100%) that of West Yorkshire, at £341,618 against £171,236; in cash terms a premium of £170,383.

Along with Beaconsfield and Wetherby, these towns include Henley on Thames in Oxfordshire (with an average premium of £365,101); followed by Alfresford in Hampshire (£201,195) and Marlborough in Wiltshire (£183,073).

Andy Mason, mortgages director at Lloyds Bank, says: “Market towns continue to be popular with homebuyers looking for a quality of life associated with country living.  These locations offer many benefits such as idyllic surroundings, history and wonderful homes without compromising on many other important amenities.

“As a result, the majority of homes in market towns command a significant premium over their neighbouring towns.  The most expensive market towns are typically found in the south of England and are a commutable distance from London.  More affordable market town homes can be found in the north of England.”

House prices in market towns have risen by an average of £546 per month in past decade

The average house price in market towns across England has risen by £65,559 (or 31%) from £208,197 in 2006 to £273,757 in 2016.  This is equivalent to an average rise of £546 per month over the past decade.

Henley-on-Thames, home of the Regatta, had the biggest increase in price over the past decade, where the average price rose by 70% (£308,117) from £439,884 to £748,001.  Henley-on-Thames is followed by Beaconsfield (68%, an increase of £389,110) and then the Oxfordshire towns of Didcot (58% increase of £119,235) and Thame (55% an increase of £136,741).

Table 1: 10 Market Towns with Highest Premium to County House Prices 2016

Market Town County Average House Price  2016 * Average House Price in County 2016 * Premium to County 2016* (%) Premium to County 2016* (£)
Beaconsfield Buckinghamshire 958,909 369,100 160% 589,808
Wetherby West Yorkshire 341,618 171,236 100% 170,383
Henley on Thames Oxfordshire 748,001 382,900 95% 365,101
Southwell Nottinghamshire 309,927 167,845 85% 142,082
Keswick Cumbria 302,615 175,341 73% 127,275
Bakewell Derbyshire 315,042 183,182 72% 131,860
Marlborough Wiltshire 439,658 256,585 71% 183,073
Alfresford Hampshire 492,645 291,450 69% 201,195
Middleton St George Durham 215,442 130,410 65% 85,032
Ormskirk Lancashire 244,075 153,446 59% 90,630
All Market Towns in England 273,757 239,845 14% 33,911

Table 2: Market Towns with Highest House Price Increases 2006 – 2016

Market Town County Region Average House Price  2006* (£) Average House Price 2016* (£) 10 Year % Change
Henley on Thames Oxfordshire South East 439,884 748,001 70%
Beaconsfield Buckinghamshire South East 569,799 958,909 68%
Didcot Oxfordshire South East 204,425 323,660 58%
Thame Oxfordshire South East 250,076 386,817 55%
Lewes Sussex South East 282,558 436,680 55%
Midhurst Sussex South East 302,857 468,027 55%
Sandwich Kent South East 206,466 317,761 54%
Yateley Hampshire South East 239,004 366,972 54%
Horsham Sussex South East 252,507 385,636 53%
Chichester Sussex South East 250,967 379,465 51%
All Market Towns in England 208,197 273,757 31%

Table 3: 10 Most Expensive Market Towns 2016

Market Town County Region Average House Price  2016 (£) *
Beaconsfield Buckinghamshire South East 958,909
Henley on Thames Oxfordshire South East 748,001
Alfresford Hampshire South East 492,645
Midhurst Sussex South East 468,027
Cranbrook Kent South East 451,780
Marlborough Wiltshire South West 439,658
Lewes Sussex South East 436,680
Petersfield Hampshire South East 430,513
Ringwood Hampshire South East 411,855
Winchcombe Gloucestershire South West 408,475

Table 4: 10 Least Expensive Market Towns 2016

Market Town County Region Average House Price  2016 (£)*
Ferryhill Durham North 93,291
Crook Durham North 108,603
Immingham Lincolnshire Yorkshire and the  Humber 115,638
Stanhope Durham North 137,778
Saltburn Durham North 138,803
Tickhill Derbyshire East Midlands 153,121
Marsden West Yorkshire Yorkshire and the Humber 154,965
Boston Lincolnshire East Midlands 157,197
Goole East Riding Yorkshire and the Humber 159,437
Leek Staffordshire West Midlands 162,868

Source: Land Registry *12 months to June 2016

Data sources:

This survey tracks house price movements in 125 market towns in England. House price data is from the Land Registry and all price figures refer to the arithmetic average of house prices. The latest data refers to the average for the 12 months to June 2016. These prices are not standardised and therefore can be affected by changes in the sample from year to year.

Southern England is defined as the South East, the South West and East Anglia. Northern England includes the North, North West, Yorkshire and the Humber, West Midlands and East Midlands.

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