Newham sees largest yearly fall in house prices

Newham recorded London’s biggest annual fall in the average cost of a house last year.

The borough’s housing market - already hit by a drop in the number of homes on sale, is now feeling the effect of an annual 2.5 per cent drop in property prices.

It means a buyer currently pays an average of �221,228 to purchase a house in the borough.

This is more than three times cheaper than in the City of Westminster, which recorded the highest annual price rise of 8.9 per cent.

It represents a further blow to sellers already smarting from news that the amount of homes sold in the borough has dropped by two thirds when compared to 2007.

Steve Singh, property consultant at Homeview estate agents in East Ham, said people were opting to rent instead, putting pressure on the lettings market.

He said: “There are ten people going for every house when it comes to lettings. There are just a shortage of properties.

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“Lettings used to be the bread and butter but now there is no bread and there is no butter.”

But Mr Singh believes the Olympic Games could prove a turning point for people in Newham trying to sell their homes.

He added: “Because of the situation with lettings, we have got landlords fed up of renting who want to sell.

“I think just before the Olympics some overseas investors might come in when they see the market is still there.”

Almost �3.2m worth of house sales and purchases were completed in the first three months of 2011 - in sharp contrast to the �1.3bn worth of business carried out in Islington in the same period.

And Mr Singh had words of advice for people eager to sell their homes now.

“We always tell people to hold on - it’s not the right time now,” he said.