Britain could fetch £8.06tn (€10.9tn, $12tn) if everything in the country — including its homes buildings, machines, bridges, roads, the shares and money in people's accounts — are put on sale, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS). The ONS — a non-ministerial department which reports directly to the UK Parliament — calculated the price tag on the basis of data compiled until the end of 2014.
ONS statistician Wesley Harris said: "The £8.1tn figure is a large number and it helps to think about it as a sum of money per person or per household." This price tag translates to £125,000 (€169,000, $185,500) per person, considering the 64.6 million people in the country, or £302,000 (€408,000, $448,000) per household, considering the estimate of 26.7 million homes.
Harris added that according to the data they had compiled since 1997, the residential value in the UK has spiraled by over three times and that "residential property is the biggest and most valuable non-financial asset in the whole economy."
Housing stock in the country would constitute more than 60% of the total price tag as it has a value of £5.1tn (€6.9tn ,$7.6tn). Between 2013 and 2014, the value of houses increased by 9% or £408bn (€551.5bn, $605.3bn), while since 1997 the increase has been £3.7tn (€5tn ,$5.49tn). This increase can be attributed to hikes in housing prices rather than more homes being built, the ONS added.
Apart from houses, other elements that went into calculating the price tag include: money both in people's bank accounts and in circulation, valued at £1.4tn (€1.9tn, $2tn); buildings and structures such as roads, railways, bridges, sports stadia, warehouses and pipelines, which contributed £1.9tn (€2.6tn, $2.8tn); and equipment, machinery and weapons systems, including all the cars and computers, that added another £850bn (€1.14tn ,$1.26tn).
While all of the above added to the net worth of the country or the so-called price tag, the financial sector and the government decreased the value, as both were in the red.
"The financial corporations sector had an estimated net worth of minus £197bn (€266bn, $292.3bn) at the end of 2014, a decrease of 219% compared with 2013," the ONS said.
With regards to the value of the government, the ONS said: "The estimated net worth of the general government sector decreased to minus £450bn (€608bn, $667.7bn) at the end of 2014, meaning that the government continued to owe more than it owned in assets."