Map shows where houses getting even further out of reach for first-time buyers

York recorded the strongest house price inflation across England and Wales’s towns and cities in 2022 – with an enormous average jump of 23.1%, or £69,648.

But in better news for first-time buyers, house prices in the UK have overall racked up their longest losing streak since the 2008 financial crisis, analysis reveals.

Since the Covid lockdown hit in March 2020, average house prices in York have surged by 41.9% or £109,457, a study from Halifax claims.

This means typical property values there have risen to £370,639.

Enveloped within Roman walls, the northeast city boasts attractions like York Minster, medieval shopping streets and York Dungeon.

Meanwhile, Woking – which has strong links to central London – saw the biggest average house price increase of any town or city in cash terms in 2022.

The cost of buying a home in the commuter town leapt from £493,299 in 2021 to £586,925 as this year drew to a close – an increase of £93,626 or 19.0%.

Meanwhile, Swansea recorded the highest rate of house price growth, with prices there having increased by 17.5% or £39,450 annually.

The cities and towns in England and Wales with the strongest annual percentage increases in house prices, according to Halifax

The region and the average house price is followed by the increase in cash and percentage terms (figures show the change in the 12 months to November 2022)

1. York, Yorkshire and the, Humber, £370,639, £69,648, 23.1%

2. Woking, South East, £586,925, £93,626, 19.0%

3. Swansea, Wales, £265,379, £39,450 17.5%

4. Chelmsford, East of England, £485,770, £69,775, 16.8%

5. Kettering, East Midlands, £326,895, £44,731, 15.9%

6. Derby, East Midlands, £277,491, £37,953, 15.8%

7. Wellingborough, East Midlands, £306,985, £41,087, 15.5%

8. Peterborough, East of England, £289,994, £37,599, 14.9%

=9. Bristol, South West, £394,126, £50,864, 14.8%

=9. Cambridge, East of England, £531,730, £68,586, 14.8%

11. Brentwood, East of England, £533,327, £66,998, 14.4%

12. Bournemouth, South West, £365,148, £45,559, 14.3%

13. Hove, South East, £526,201, £65,255, 14.2%

14. Colchester, East of England, £377,003, £46,208, 14.0%

15. Birmingham, West Midlands, £269,385, £32,563, 13.8%

16. Milton Keynes, South East, £416,496, £49,594, 13.5%

17. Newcastle-upon-Tyne, North East, £260,675, £30,157, 13.1%

18. Nottingham, East Midlands, £286,696, £32,966, 13.0%

19. Southampton, South East, £316,286, £36,151, 12.9%

20. Cheltenham, South West, £406,767, £45,972, 12.7%

The towns and cities with the weakest annual growth in house prices, according to Halifax

=8. Lambeth, London, £601,372, £8,224, 1.4%

=8. Weston-Super-Mare, South West, £264,569, £3,649, 1.4%

=11. Harlow, East of England, £348,180, £6,227, 1.8%

=11. Warrington, North West, £282,457, £5,079, 1.8%

Chelmsford, Kettering, Derby and Wellingborough also featured on the list of the strongest annual percentage increases in house prices.

But places like Leicester, Hull and Maidenheard proved themselves slightly more affordable as they had the weakest annual growth.

Experts have noted that it’s unusual for rapid house price growth not to be dominated by spots in the South East.

Kim Kinnaird, mortgages director, Halifax, said: ’While London still has some of the highest property prices in the country, it recorded comparatively modest house price inflation over the last 12 months.

‘This is partly due to pandemic-driven shifts in housing preferences as buyers sought bigger properties further from urban centres.

‘We can see this clearly in commuter towns such as Woking, Chelmsford and Hove, which – with their more diverse range of properties perhaps offering better value – recorded much bigger increases over the last year.’

But a report from the Nationwide Building Society has pointed out that average house prices overall continued to fall in December, albeit less rapidly than in recent months.

The average price of the houses that were sold during the month dropped by 0.1%.

Average house prices in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland and the English regions, followed by the increase over the past year in cash and percentage terms, according to Halifax (figures show the change in the 12 months to November 2022):

  • East Midlands, £292,427, £23,481, 8.7%
  • East of England, £421,710, £43,431, 11.5%
  • London, £596,667, £39,877, 7.2%
  • North East, £221,983, £17,776, 8.7%
  • Northern Ireland, £210,550, £21,560, 11.4%
  • North West, £268,573, £23,442, 9.6%
  • Scotland, £242,213, £23,814, 10.9%
  • South East, £477,003, £58,970, 14.1%
  • South West, £364,759, £39,025, 12.0%
  • Wales, £257,695, £20,669, 8.7%
  • West Midlands, £298,193, £26,801, 9.9%
  • Yorkshire and the Humber, £259,031, £21,999, 9.3%


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