British Property Bubble Reaching Critical Levels

13.06.2016 • Investing

From Money Week (GREAT BRITAIN)-

UK-wide house prices are back to where they were at the peak of the bubble in 2007, in terms of prices relative to incomes. But is this just a London problem? Figuring it out isn’t an exact science, but by comparing gross average weekly earnings data from the Office for National Statistics with Nationwide data on average UK house prices by region, you can get a good idea of how prices in each area stand compared with the average since 1983.

So what does it show? Prices in London are – as you’d perhaps expect – far more expensive relative to incomes than in any other part of the UK. The price/income ratio is also significantly higher than at the peak of the last bubble, and almost twice its long-term average. Meanwhile, ratios in the regions nearest London – the south of England, East Anglia, and the Midlands (to a lesser extent) – are back to where they were at the last peak. The rest of the UK isn’t quite as egregiously overvalued. The price/income ratio in Northern Ireland is well below its bubble peak, while the north of England, Scotland and Wales still have a way to go to reach those levels too. Yet even in the less expensive parts of the UK, prices are hardly cheap – price-to-income ratios in every single region remain at least slightly above the long-term average. In short, if you’re looking for value in the UK property market, the pickings are slim.

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