The number of British streets where homes are worth at least £1m has fallen by 10% in a year.
However, a new report by property portal Zoopla shows that despite this fall, there are still more than 15,000 million-pound streets in Britain, with the vast majority located in the South East and London.
Here, we take a look at the most expensive places to buy a house and assess what’s really happening in the prime property market.
Number of million-pound streets falls by 10%
New research by Zoopla claims that the number of million-pound streets in Britain has dropped from 17,289 to 15,484 in the last 12 months.
The property portal’s Rich List is compiled through the use of an algorithm that combines Land Registry sale data, listing prices from estate agents and information supplied by homeowners.
Zoopla’s findings reflect a period of wider economic uncertainty, which has seen prime properties falling in price and taking longer to sell.
Where are Britain’s million-pound streets?
Zoopla says that 91% of Britain’s million-pound streets are located in southern England.
The three most common areas for pricey properties are the South East of England (5,671), London (5,329) and the East of England (2,406).
These figures represent a big drop on last year’s numbers – with these three regions alone seeing a combined 1,607 million-pound streets drop off the map in the last 12 months.
This trend is in keeping with the national picture, with every region except Yorkshire and the Humber seeing a decrease in its number of million-pound streets.
Mapped: Britain’s million-pound streets
You can hover a region on the interactive map below to see how many of its streets have average house values of £1m or more.
London leads the way on property values
You might not be surprised to learn that London accounts for all 20 of the most expensive streets in Britain, with average house values ranging from £8.4m in Chelsea Square (20th place) to an eye-watering £32.8m in Kensington Palace Gardens (1st place).
Home to Chelsea football club owner Roman Abramovich, Kensington Palace Gardens has topped Zoopla’s rich list for 11 years running, though the portal says that even in this swanky location values have fallen by nearly £3m in the space of a year.
Where are the most expensive streets outside London?
Four of the five most expensive streets outside London are in commuter towns close to the English capital. Montrose Gardens in Leatherhead tops the list with average values of £6.5m.
The exception to this rule is Broadway in Altrincham, Greater Manchester, where property values sit at just under £3m, taking fifth place in the list.
Narrowly missing out on the top five is Whitebarn Road in Alderley Edge, Cheshire, a popular haunt for Premier League footballers where house values average £2.8m.
|Rank||Street name||County||Average property value|
|1||Montrose Gardens (Leatherhead, KT22)||Surrey||£6.50m|
|2||Temple Gardens (Rickmansworth, WD3)||Herfordshire||£4.36m|
|3||Philippines Shaw (Sevenoaks, TN14)||Kent||£3.88m|
|4||Dock Lane (Brockenhurst, SO42)||Hampshire||£3.16m|
|5||Broadway (Altrincham, WA15)||Greater Manchester||£2.98m|
When we look at the towns with the highest number of million-pound streets, those within commuting distance of London again dominate.
In keeping with the national picture, the top five towns have all seen significant falls in the last year, with Reading losing 35 of its million-pound streets.
|Rank||Town||Number of million-pound streets||Year-on-year change|
Are people actually buying million-pound properties?
Zoopla’s research estimates the average value of properties around Britain, but it doesn’t take into account how many homes have actually been sold.
Earlier this year, Lloyds Bank released a report showing 14,638 properties were sold for £1m or more in the UK in 2018, a figure that marked an overall increase of just 1%, and a fall of 0.5% in London.
This period of very slow growth came off the back of sales rising by a remarkable 194% in the decade leading up to 2018.
Is London on the up again?
London’s prime property market has borne the brunt of house price stagnation since the Brexit vote, though that could be changing.
Recent research by the private bank Coutts shows that prime prices in London edged up by 3.1% in the first half of this year.
This growth was driven by the number of properties coming on to the market falling by 12% year-on-year, resulting in greater demand from buyers for the best homes.
- Find out more: what will Brexit mean for house prices?
Can you get a mortgage on a multi-million-pound property?
Many multi-million-pound homes are bought with cash by the rich and famous, but others are purchased with a standard residential mortgage.
Earlier this year, we crunched the numbers and found that around one in four (23%) mortgage deals came with maximum loan sizes of £1m or more, with high street lenders such as Barclays and NatWest offering products with maximum limits as high as £10m.
When taking out a million-pound mortgage, you’ll usually need a deposit of at least 25% of the property’s value, and significant earnings to boot.
In the buy-to-let mortgage market, it’s harder to get such a large loan. Our analysis back in May showed that investors needed a 35-40% deposit to take out loans of up to £5m, a figure that dropped to £3m for those with a 20-30% deposit.
How to find the best place to live
Deciding on a location is arguably the most important part of the home-buying journey, and we’re here to help you make the right call.
Our interactive tool provides information about every local authority in England, including the number of good and outstanding schools, average house prices and happiness scores, to help you decide where to live.
To get started, simply type the name of an area or its postcode into the box below – or, for more general advice on location-scouting, check out our guide on finding the best places to live.