UK areas where house prices were most pandemic proof in 2020

LaToya Harding
·Contributor
·3-min read
People walk through near-deserted streets in the centre of Newcastle upon Tyne, Thursday lunchtime in north-east England on April 9, 2020 as Britain continued to battle the outbreak of new coronavirus and the governement prepared to extend the nationwide lockdown. - The disease has struck at the heart of the British government, infected more than 60,000 people nationwide and killed over 7,000, with another record daily death toll of 938 reported on April 8. A testing centre opened in Gateshead on April 9, 2020 as the government ramped up its testing of NHS staff for the new coronavirus. (Photo by Oli SCARFF / AFP) (Photo by OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)
People walk through near-deserted streets in the centre of Newcastle upon Tyne. Potential homeowners looking to buy in the North East would receive the best investment where new build homes are concerned. Photo: Oli SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)

The North East of England has claimed the crown as the most pandemic proof new build hotspot in the UK.

That’s according to the latest research by property developer StripeHomes, which surveyed what parts of the new build housing market are home to the most significant price premiums, despite the pressure caused by the pandemic.

Potential homeowners looking to buy in the North East would receive the best investment where new build homes are concerned, the data showed, with new builds commanding an average of £187,208 ($249,773) in the region.

While this is the most affordable in the UK, it is also 47% more than the £127,042 paid for existing homes. The house price data was sourced from the UK House Price Index.

New builds in Scotland came second on the list, currently commanding a 40% price premium when compared to the average price of existing stock.

Elsewhere, the East Midlands and West Midlands were also home to some of the most substantial new build price premiums, with the average new build currently selling for 35% and 34% more than existing stock in each region.

In contrast, the average London new build price sits at £482,421, 1% lower than the average price paid for existing properties (£487,132).

Potential homeowners looking to buy in the North East would receive the best investment where new build homes are concerned, the data showed
Potential homeowners looking to buy in the North East would receive the best investment where new build homes are concerned, the data showed

The figures also showed that across the UK as a whole, new build property prices have slumped since January, falling 2.9%. However, new build homes still commanded a 26% price premium compared to the average cost of an existing property.

James Forrester, managing director of StripeHomes, said: “Like every other aspect of life, the new build property sector has faced its fair share of challenges as a result of the current pandemic. London has been hit particularly hard, and new build homes are now selling for less than existing stock, which is unheard of across the sector.

He added: “The North East is leading the way. Not only is the region home to the lowest new build house price, which is great for aspirational buyers, it also presents the most robust price premiums for new build homes when compared to existing stock.

“As a result, we’ve seen a consistently strong level of investment across the region despite the broader challenges posed by the current landscape, which bodes very well for the future of the North East property market.”

The data comes as it was reported earlier this month that UK house prices topped £250,000 for the first time in history.

READ MORE: How the new lockdown may help the UK housing market in the short term

Halifax’s house price index, one of the longest-running and most closely followed gauges of the UK property market, showed prices were 7.5% higher in October than a year earlier.

It marked the highest rate of annual growth since mid-2016.

At the time, Russell Galley, managing director of Halifax, said that the market continued to be “supercharged” by stamp duty cuts and soaring interest in moving amid the pandemic, fuelling unusually high levels of demand that has pushed up prices.

However, while growth was remarkably strong year-on-year, the pace of monthly price gains has slowed sharply over the past two months. Prices were up 0.3% between September and October, compared to 1.5% gains a month earlier and 1.7% the previous two months.

Watch: Why are house prices rising during a recession?