HOMEOWNERS are sitting on a property fortune worth more than the combined annual GDP of the UK, France and Italy.
The total value of the UK’s privately owned homes is £5.6 trillion according to a report by Halifax, which claims prices have soared by 50 per cent in the past decade.
Individually the value of the average UK property is now £241,682, compared to £67,845 in 2006. This puts the total value of properties at more than the fortunes of the world’s 1,810 billionaires added together.
And despite economic uncertainty following the EU referendum, the value of privately owned housing has risen by £337 billion in the UK.
Martin Ellis, who is a housing economist at Halifax, told ITV: “Overall housing equity held by UK households is in a healthy state, with total housing assets worth over £4.2 trillion more than the value of mortgage debt. Housing equity has grown by £1.6 trillion since 2006. For almost one in three home owners – who own their home with no outstanding mortgage debt – their financial position is even stronger.”
Overall in the UK property values have risen by 51 per cent since 2006 and the number of privately owned homes has increased to 23.1million from 1.8m.
There are however regional differences and a further widening of the north-south divide based on growth in property prices. In southern regions the value of private homes has risen by 70 per cent in the past decade, putting its share of total UK housing wealth at 62 per cent. In the northern regions however, there has been an increase of just 27 per cent in the value of privately owned properties.
The dramatic rise in the value of property wealth has been attributed to a combination of increased levels of home ownership and rising house prices.