Recent years have seen the surprising spectacle of property owners making more money from their properties than they have from their main occupations. By the happy coincidence of buying a house at the right time and in the right location, many owners became paper property millionaires by default.
However, according to a recent report by Zoopla, a leading property listing website, the softening housing market, particularly in the high value locations of London and the Sourth-east, has considerably reduced the number of property millionaires in Britain.
This number could have fallen by as much as 35,000 over the past year, according to Zoopla. With something like 733,777 homes across Britain now valued at £1 million-plus, that number is down by 34,776 from the 768,553 properties valued at this level in February 2018 – says Zoopla.
Though a small section of the overall UK property market, seven figure residential properties still represent a significant block overall, amounting to something like one-in-forty of the nation’s housing stock.
London has seen the steepest fall in property values over the last 12 months, many of those most affected being in the higher value locations in central London, as Brexit uncertainty, higher stamp duty and capital gains tax implications for foreign buyers bite.
Even so, further away from London and the South East, other parts of Britain, where fewer property millionaires are scattered, numbers of million pound properties have been increasing over the last year.
To some extent this has off-set the falls in the south where greater numbers of million-pound homes are concentrated. In Wales, for example, there are now around 150 more property millionaires than it had a year ago, that figure now standing at 2,373 according to Zoopla.
To put this in perspective, Wales has less than half the number of property millionaires than in the Hertfordshire city of St Albans, where 4,889 homes are valued at £1 million-plus.
In the North-east, Yorkshire and the Humber, there are 203 more millionaires than a year ago, and the South West, the East of England, the Midlands, the North West and the North East of England have in aggregate seen significate growth in the number of property millionaires.
Scotland, on the other hand has been largely flat in terms of the growth in the number of property millionaires, even falling very slightly.
Zoopla Spokeswoman, Annabel Dixon, had said that outside London “there has been significant growth in seven-figure properties, especially in the East of England and West Midlands”.
Below is a list of properties worth £1 million-plus according to Zoopla’s calculations, followed by the number in February 2018, ranked from the highest number to the lowest:
1. London, 395,871, 430,720
2. South East England, 171,454, 180,397
3. East of England, 76,077, 69,840
4. South West England, 34,367, 33,717
5. West Midlands, 13,221, 12,219
6. North West England, 12,881, 12,552
7. Scotland, 11,087, 11,101
8. East Midlands, 7,298, 6,845
9. North East England, 4,842, 4,835
10. Yorkshire and the Humber, 4,306, 4,103
11. Wales, 2,373, 2,223