Monday, 9 July 2012

The value of Britains past

The Value of England's PastNew research by the London School of Economics and English Heritage proves the value of conservation areas.

Houses in conservation areas sell at a premium and show a greater appreciation in value than those in other areas. This is even after adjusting for the effects of the kind of property involved and where it is located. These are just some of the findings of the first, rigorous, large-scale, analysis of the effects of conservation areas on house prices in England, published today (Saturday 7th July, 2012). The research was funded by English Heritage and undertaken by the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE).

A statistical analysis of more than 1 million property transactions between 1995 and 2010 from the Nationwide building society and data on more than 8,000 English conservation areas found that properties in conservation areas sell for 23% more on average than houses outside conservation areas. Even when location, the kind of properties involved and other factors affecting house prices are adjusted for a premium of around 9% was still found.

However, this falls by 4 percentage points (or to 5%) in conservation areas that are classified by Local Authorities as being "at risk" which could mean buildings lying derelict, loss of historic details such as sash windows, neglected public spaces and new buildings which threaten the area's character.

Properties closer to the centre of a conservation area sell for more than those at the edge suggesting people like being surrounded by more heritage. Even houses outside but close to the boundary of a conservation area (out to 500-700m), sell for more than similar properties elsewhere.

It was also found that house prices in conservation areas have grown at a rate that exceeded comparable properties elsewhere by 0.2%. Read the full article from English Heritage here