The number of Londoners leaving the capital is at the highest level in nine years as new data shows 74,000 households left the city this year.
Rising house prices and stretched affordability continue to be the big drivers behind many of the exit decisions. On average, those buying outside the capital spent £388,000 on their new home, compared to the average asking price in London of £616,000.
Most London leavers stay in the South of England. The pace of house price growth in the South East, South West and East of England continues to outstrip Greater London because of rising demand for homes in the hundreds of commuter Towns and villages within a 60-minute commute of the capital.
Why the exodus?
Almost 75 per cent of leavers are in search of bigger homes with three or more bedrooms, while for an increasing number of first-time buyers, leaving the capital is the only way of getting onto the housing ladder.
Johnny Morris, Head of Research at Hamptons International, says: "With affordability in the capital stretched, more Londoners are looking elsewhere to buy their first home. More too are likely to go further afield, with increasing numbers heading to the Midlands and North."
While 80 per cent of London leavers head to the South East or East, the proportion and number of Londoners heading north of the capital has been steadily rising since 2012.
The number of Londoners buying outside the capital this year is up by 11,000 from 2015, but still 16,000 fewer than the levels recorded in 2007, per the Hamptons International report. With the pace of house price growth tipped to slow next year, a drop-in exit numbers are expected.
"A slower housing market in 2017 will likely mean that we see more Londoners buying outside of the capital than in 2016," says Morris.
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