The Six Nations rugby property market – whose house prices are growing the most?

England may well be the favourites to win the rugby, but they're NOT top of the house price league tables!

The second match in the 19th series of the Six Nations is about to commence – and it may come as no surprise that England and Wales are taking the lead. But does this correlate to their house price performance?

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It would appear not. England may have claimed victory on the pitch for the last two years, but it is Ireland who rules the game when it comes to property price growth. A substantial 11.6 per cent rise in average prices year-on-year means that the country is set to reap the rewards of its robust market conditions over the past few years.

‘Ireland has had a remarkable recovery, with the pace of its economic growth over the last number of years the envy of Europe,’ says John Ring, Head of Research at Knight Frank Ireland.

‘A strong economy, coupled with an ongoing population boom, has fuelled price growth. There are signs that this rise in prices is attracting developers back into the market, suggesting there is good reason to be optimistic about the direction of Ireland’s property market in 2018.’

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Image Credit: Mark Bolton

England and Wales are not far behind, with both countries having a registered price growth of 5.1% and 4.5% respectively. This may be surprising, considering that the rate of annual growth in England is lower than it was in 2016, but a lack of new homes and low mortgage rates are underpinning prices.

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Yet, unsurprisingly, while their price growths are similar, their property values are not. According to HM Land Registry, the average house prices in England in November 2017 were £226,071; this is £73,216 more than Wales, where the average was £152,855.

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Image credit: David Cleveland

Meanwhile, France and Scotland make up the lower half of the housing market league table. That isn’t to say prices aren’t growing though – the countries have a recorded annual growth of 3.9% and 3.6% respectively.

France has Emmanuel Macron to thank for this. His presidential victory boosted market sentiment dramatically, and recent data from the French Statistics Office shows that average prices are now rising at their fastest rate for six years – chances are they won’t be in the doldrums for much longer!

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In Scotland though, low supply and high demand remains a key factor in growing prices, especially in the big cities such as Edinburgh and Glasgow.

So that leaves us with Italy, who is the only country of the six to have recorded negative price growth over the 12-month period. Although this is a marginal fall of 0.8% year-on-year, several years of low demand and high supply have weaken its property prices, despite a recovering economy.

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