Top prices soar

The average asking price for prime properties in the UK is at an all-time high following a 0.9% (£4043) increase last month, according to the latest Prime Index from website PrimeLocation.com.

Flying in the face of the UK’s double-dip recession, asking prices for prime homes – which are the top 25% of all UK property by value – currently average £478,797. This is an increase of 4.8% (£21,756) on the same time last year.

The strength of London’s prime property market is a key driver. Asking prices here are at an all-time high of £1,307,801. This is £158,047 or 13.7% more than a year ago.

At a regional level, all areas of the UK experienced a month on month increase in prime sales asking prices except the north-east, where prices fell 1%. Compared to 12 months ago, prices are up in every region except Yorkshire and the Humber and the north-east, with the strongest regional year on year performance outside of London in the north-west, where prices are up 7.5%.

Nigel Lewis, property analyst at PrimeLocation.com, said: “As the bad news rolls in from outside the UK and the economy stutters, the prime market has been marching on regardless as the UK’s wealthiest home owners continue to prosper. With the exception of the north-east, which is the only region to see prime asking price fall every month in 2012.”