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Most £1m-plus sales this year likely to take place outside Greater London

Gently rising house values in the mainstream market and problems facing the prime market in the capital mean that over half the £1m-plus homes sold this year are likely to be located outside of Greater London.

The forecast is being made by independent mortgage broker Private Finance based on its analysis of Land Registry data for England and Wales.

This shows a 195 per cent rise in residential transactions valued at £1m-plus between 2011 and 2016. Total transactions across the entire housing market rose by 54 per cent over the same period, meaning the volume of £1m-plus purchases grew nearly four times as fast as the overall market.

The trend comes despite cooling activity at the very top of the housing market after George Osborne’s reforms to stamp duty in December 2014 and April 2016.

The continuing rise of house prices across much of the country meant that £1m-plus transactions still rose 10 per cent between 2015 and 2016.

Private Finance says that historically the majority of £1m-plus transactions have taken place in Greater London, which enjoyed a 63 per cent share of the higher-end market in 2011.

London also recorded by far the biggest growth in the annual volume of £1m-plus transactions between 2011 and 2016. Surrey ranked second followed by Hertfordshire.

However, the broker says this may be about to change.

From 2015 to 2016, growth of £1m-plus purchases in Greater London was outpaced by  other areas - Hertfordshire, Surrey, Essex, Hampshire and Kent.

It predicts that if this trend continues, more than 51 per cent of £1m-plus property transactions will take place outside Greater London in 2017 for the first time on record.

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