London housing market report

This page summarises key trends and patterns in London’s housing market and is updated on a quarterly basis. The latest report was published in May 2019.

This summary draws on official statistics and other sources, and links in each case to the original source. The data shown is the latest available at the time of writing, and some sources may have since been updated. Any queries regarding the data should in the first instance be addressed to the original source. Users should also note that changes in the housing market can take time to show in published data.

1. House prices

Annual house price change, London and other regions
  • In February 2019 the seasonally-adjusted average house price in London was £462,000 (ONS).
  • This is a decrease of 3.8% on one year ago and is the second lowest level of price growth in an English region over that period.

2. Private rents

  • Private rents in London on average rose by 0.5% in nominal terms in the year to March 2019 (ONS).
  • This compares to an increase of 1.5% in the rest of England. London rental price growth has been below the England average since late 2016.
  • Real term annual growth (after accounting for CPI inflation) was negative in March 2019, as it has been since the beginning of 2017.

3. New supply: Completions

Energy Performance Certificates for new dwellings in London
  • There were 41,680 new home EPCs registered in London in the year to Q1 2019, an increase of 22% from 34,240 in the previous year (MHCLG).
  • Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) are required for all new homes, including change of use, and EPC data can be used as a proxy for completions.

4. New supply: Planning approvals

  • Figures from the Home Builders Federation (HBF) show that 69,780 homes were granted planning approval in London in 2018.
  • This is down 1% on 2017, which is the first fall in annualised planning approval numbers since the beginning of 2017. However, the data continues to show high numbers of planning approvals compared with the levels witnessed between 2010 and 2017.

5. Mortgage lending

Median loan to income ratios for first-time buyers, London
  • The typical first-time buyer in London took out a loan of 4.05 times their income in Q4 2018 and the typical London home mover took out a loan of 3.99 times their income (UK Finance).
  • There were 42,800 new mortgages advanced to first-time buyers in London in 2018, which is broadly aligned with the number of loans advanced in 2017.

6. Transactions

  • According to RICS Survey data from their sample of London-based surveyors (weighted towards Inner London) surveyors’ stock to sales ratio increased in London in Q1 2019 and is now at a level similar to that seen in 2008.
  • Surveyors’ price expectations continue to be negative and new buyer enquiries are also down.

7. Landlord repossessions / tenancy terminations

  • 9,723 rented homes were repossessed by court bailiffs from private or social tenants in London in 2018 (MOJ), a decrease of 18% from 2017. The number of landlord claims also decreased in 2018 by 14%.
  • 383 mortgaged homes in London were repossessed in 2018, an increase of 15% on 2017 but still a low level by historic standards.