Asking prices on homes are crashing in the London borough Camden, according to Rightmove data, as the priciest inner city areas feel the heat of stamp duty rises and Brexit uncertainty.
In December it was the worst-performing of all London boroughs, with asking prices falling by 15.3% compared to October and 17.7% on the same month a year before. The average Camden asking price is now £994,411.
That compares to a fall of 4.3% over the month and 0.1% over the year for Greater London as a whole, which had an average asking price of £616,160. London is in the grip of an acute housing shortage, with around half the number of new units needed actually delivered each year.
As a result, house prices have risen sharply in the city in recent years amid intense demand from domestic and foreign buyers, pushing home ownership beyond affordability for many aspiring first-time buyers in the city.
Moreover, demand at the top of the property market in London has been clipped by significant increases by the Treasury to stamp duty on expensive and second homes. Transactions on £1m+ homes have fallen as a result. The vote for Brexit has weakened the market further.
Rightmove also said the average asking price across England and Wales fell 2.1% on the month — a seasonal fall in line with the past six years — but rose 3.4% over the year, hitting £299,159. And the property listings site forecasts continued growth at the national level in 2017, though at a slower rate of 2%.
"As well as prices moving out of reach for some buyers, the sword of Brexit uncertainty hangs over the market, an unknown factor that may – or may not – have damaging consequences for the economy and confidence," said Miles Shipside, director of Rightmove.
"There was a bout of jitters with the unexpected referendum result, albeit now seemingly short-lived, but more may arrive after Article 50 is invoked. For the time being any nervousness is being overridden by high demand for the short supply of suitable homes for sale in the lower and middle market in many parts of the country."