[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Monday, 23 April 2007, 10:18 GMT 11:18 UK
Cheapest town's homes top 100k
Houses for sale
The lowest average house price in a British town is 104,738
Every town in the UK has an average house price above 100,000 for the first time ever, according to Halifax.

The town in Britain with the cheapest property is Lochgelly in Fife, where the average home costs 104,738.

The average house price for the whole of the UK passed 200,000 for the first time in February this year.

A north-south divide has re-emerged, with London prices rising 14.9% over the past year while average prices in the north of England have risen 5.6%.

Price boom

But the part of the UK recording the highest rise in average prices, over the past few years, has been Northern Ireland.

The average house price in Northern Ireland has risen by 76% since the start of 2005.

During the past year the growth of prices in the region has been even more startling.

The ten towns that have seen the biggest house price rises during the last 12 months are all in Northern Ireland.

Peace dividend

This is the first time that all the towns in the top ten have been in the same area of the UK, the Halifax added.

Experts have said that Northern Ireland is experiencing a peace dividend and catching up on a decade worth of property price growth seen in the rest of the UK and Ireland.

Buy-to-let investors and second home buyers from Ireland have also helped push up prices.

But with the Bank of England widely expected to increase the cost of borrowing again at its meeting in May, Halifax predicts housing market conditions will worsen a little as 2007 rolls-on.

"We expect the higher level of interest rates, negative real earnings growth and above inflation council tax bill increases to lead to slower house price growth over the coming months," Martin Ellis, Halifax chief economist said.




RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites



FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

PRODUCTS & SERVICES

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific