Builders go where the cash is.

Builders target affluent areas

Published:  20 July, 2011

LONDON: Housebuilders are focused on prime regions where they are most likely to attract demand from buyers who do not need a mortgage according to research by Savills. 

The property agent said land in Oxford is only 5% below its peak of 2007, but in areas like Bradford, values are 69% lower. The research also shows the divide is not just between the North and South of the UK, with Aberdeen values 31% below their peak as Bournemouth endures a 52% shortfall.

Yolande Barnes, head of Savills research, said: "A shortage of permissioned land is putting pressure on prices in the best locations for sites that are ready to develop."

Ms Barnes added that investment is targeted at readily-developable sites close to urban areas.

Overall, greenfield land in the UK is 45% below its peak value, while urban land, where it is traditionally more complex to secure planning permission, is 52% lower.

The best performing region in the UK is the South East, with prices 34% lower, while northern England is 61% down. However, within this, York, a traditionally affluent city, is 39% below peak, while Hastings in the South East is down 53%.

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