Owning a house beside the sea is a dream for many people, but this idyllic lifestyle can often come at a premium.
Recent research by Halifax has revealed that average house prices in seaside towns in Britain have increased from £166,565 in 2006 to £219,386 in 2016.
"Seaside towns are highly popular places to live, offering sought-after scenery, weather and lifestyle which no doubt come at a price,” commented Martin Ellis, housing economist at Halifax. “They also attract those looking for holiday properties, which add upward pressure on house prices, which our research shows have increased by an average of £440 per month since 2006.”
The biggest seaside house price growth has apparently been seen in Scotland, with seven out of the top ten growth areas to be found in Aberdeenshire. Fraserburgh tops the list, with house prices growing by an average of 139% over the past ten years, from £63,540 in 2006 to £151,719 in 2016, equivalent to a monthly increase of £735.
Other high performing areas include Macduff, where prices increased by 102% (from £66,226 to £133,567), Peterhead (95%), Cove Bay (94%) and Newtonhill (91%).
Outwith Scotland, the greatest increase in seaside house prices was to be found in Brighton, where prices increased by 59%, from £214,863 to £341,235 between 2006 and 2016.
Although Scotland has seen the biggest price rises over the past ten years, the most expensive seaside properties are still to be found on the south coast of England.
Sandbanks in Poole is now the most expensive seaside town (£664,655), replacing Salcombe in South Devon, which had held the top place since 2010. Other most expensive seaside towns located in the South of England include Padstow (£443,396), Lymington (£426,112), Dartmouth (£401,361) and Fowey (£379,003).
Scotland apparently contains nine out of the ten least expensive seaside towns in the UK, with Port Bannatyne on the Isle of Bute containing the cheapest average property prices (£77,132).
Seven of the least expensive are in western Scotland, including Girvan (£91,912), Campbeltown (£91,938) and Saltcoats (£93,479). Newbiggin by the Sea in Northumberland (£81,259) is the least expensive seaside town in England.
It is not just in seaside towns where the most expensive properties are to be found in the south of England. Separate research by Halifax has found that property prices per square metre have risen by 432% in the Greater London, compared to a national average increase of 251% over the past two decades.
Although London continues to dominates the country's list of most expensive property locations on a per square metre basis, five areas outside southern England fetch a higher property price per square metre than the national average of £2,216 – Solihull and Leamington Spa in West Midlands, Altrincham in the North West, Scotland’s capital, Edinburgh and Harrogate in Yorkshire.
The research found that nowhere in Great Britain had an average price below £1,000 per m², but Airdrie in Scotland had the lowest average price at £1,019 per m², less than a tenth of the average price per square metre in Kensington and Chelsea.
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