Seaside home prices double in decade

The largest increase is in the Cornwall town of Wadebridge where the average price jumped by almost 270% from just over £100,000 in 2001 to £370,902 in 2011.
Maryport, close to the Lakes in Cumbria, was second on the list, where the average house prices rose by 192% from £40,932 in 2001 to £119,604 in 2011, followed by Tenby (186%) and Seaham (177%).

Many of the biggest prices increases during the past ten years have been in coastal towns in northern England and Wales. These towns include Whitehaven in Cumbria (172%), Caernarfon (171%) and Pwllheli (169%) in Wales, Cleethorpes on the South Humberside coast (165%) and Whitby in North Yorkshire (153%).

There is a significant North-South divide in house prices in seaside towns despite the big increases in house prices in many seaside towns in the north since 2001. All ten of the most expensive seaside towns are on the south coast with Sandbanks in Dorset coming out on top with an average house price of £532,652. Sandbanks is followed by Padstow (£381,916), Wadebridge (£370,902) and Fowey (£363,494) in the list of most expensive seaside towns.

Outside southern England the most expensive seaside towns include the Mumbles in Swansea (£263,470), Tenby (£229,690), Alnwick in Northumberland (£220,228) and Whitby (£216,190).

Not all seaside towns boast high average prices.  Two of the most renowned and historically popular seaside towns in England, Blackpool (£111,003) and Cleethorpes (£117,882), make the list of the ten least expensive seaside towns.

The least expensive town in the survey is Withernsea on the North Humberside coast with an average house price of £99,153. Fleetwood on the Lancashire coast follows just behind at £102,908. Outside northern England, Rhyl (£121,838) is the least expensive Welsh seaside town, and Lowestoft (£141,097) has the lowest average house price of seaside towns in southern England.

Nitesh Patel, housing economist at Halifax, said: "Seaside towns have always been popular places to live, but they have perhaps become even more so in recent years. This is certainly true if we take house prices as an indicator of desirability. Over the past decade, the average house price in seaside towns has risen at a faster rate than for all properties in England and Wales generally. The 270% increase in Wadebridge in Cornwall is notable, but prices have seen big rises in coastal towns across northern England and Wales too.

"Seaside towns have a distinct advantage over urban areas in offering that all important sea view, and they typically have a high quality of life and a healthy environment.  There is a romance associated with living by the sea and this is evident in the high house prices seen in many of these areas."

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