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West Midlands property prices will rise fastest, says economist; in association with

The West Midlands is to experience the highest levels of house price growth in the UK in 2010 according to a leading academic.

Professor Patrick Minford, an academic at Cardiff business school, has predicted that the housing market will recover next year as a result of the fiscal policy stimuli and the stimulative activity being undertaken by the Government and central banks.

The Housing and Economy report, by European commercial property consultancy company At is real, predicts the region will experience the highest levels in nominal growth across the UK reaching 8.7 per cent in 2010.

Professor Minford, a former economic adviser to Margaret Thatcher, said that while interest rates have fallen dramatically, lending growth has not yet responded to these low rates.

He added: "In time the very low cost of money will take effect and it will become feasible for borrowers to buy assets including houses at bargain prices at a low borrowing cost.

"As soon as uncertainty diminishes within steadying markets the temptation to do so will become irresistible."

Director of Birmingham planning at Atisreal, Matthew Walton, said that house builders in the West Midlands are currently putting a stop on new builds and even some mid-builds which is affecting housing delivery and will continue to do so for some time.

He said: "There is a demand for housing and the latest regional planning guidance for the West Midlands proposed that 365,000 new homes need to be built in the period between 2006 and 2026 which equates to 18,280 per year.

"Therefore there are some definite prospects for those house builders prepared to look at long term opportunities and steal a march on the rest of the market, especially in light of the positive outlook for house price growth in the West Midlands."

Professor Minford concluded that other buyers will now get more credit on better terms, so the housing market should first begin to experience slower price falls.
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Title Annotation:Business
Publication:The Birmingham Post (England)
Date:Mar 31, 2009
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