More home owners planning to move as confidence spreads across UK

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HOME owners are expecting property values to jump by nearly nine per cent typically between now and September in further signs of growing market confidence.

The average house price increase of 8.8 per cent that is predicted to happen over the coming months is almost double the typical 4.5 per cent rate of growth anticipated by home owners this time last year, according to the research by Zoopla.

Some 95 per cent of home owners are predicting prices will rise in the coming months, which is the most widespread expectation recorded since the property website’s research began five years ago. This time last year, just 74 per cent of home owners expected property values to increase.

In Yorkshire, 92 per cent of home owners are expecting house prices to rise in the next six months. The predicted rise is 7.7 per cent.

Just three months ago, the figures for Yorkshire were 88 per cent expecting rises, with the predicted rise at 5.8 per cent.

Londoners remain among the most bullish about house prices rising, with 97 per cent of home owners in the English capital expecting prices to rise over the next six months as well as average price growth of 12 per cent. The South East has the biggest proportion of people predicting price rises, at 98 per cent, although the average expected increase is lower than that in London, at 9.4 per cent.

But, in further evidence that the housing market confidence is spreading beyond southern England, Zoopla said that Wales has seen the largest increase in home owner confidence about prices rising in recent months. The proportion of property owners in Wales who expect prices to increase in the coming months has surged from 85 per cent just three months ago to 92 per cent.

The research also suggests that home owners in Scotland and the North East of England are the least confident that house prices are set to climb higher in the next six months, although 89 per cent of people in both these areas predict prices will increase.

A growing proportion are also thinking about moving, with almost one third of people planning to buy a property in the next year, up from 22 per cent in January.

Lawrence Hall, spokesman for Zoopla.co.uk, said property market confidence is “finally filtering out of London” and across the country.

He said: “With prospective sellers eager to take advantage of a buoyant market and buyers wanting to snap up the best properties before they slip out of reach, indications suggest the market will remain strong over the coming months.”

Recent figures released by the Office for National Statistics showed that house prices have already leapt 9.1 per cent year-on-year to reach a new average high of £253,000 in February.

Separate research by independent estate agents network Move With Us found that 57 per cent of agents report that they are experiencing a shortage of semi-detached homes for sale.