The Wimbledon Tennis Championships are here again, and for the seventh year in a row the prize money on offer from the All England Lawn Tennis Club has increased. The overall prize money pot stands at £34 million, with the winners of both the women’s and men’s single tournament taking home a staggering £2.25 million on top of the crown.
You’d think that would help them to find the perfect home right on the doorstep of the Championships, but alas, this prize money doesn’t leave enough to purchase a house in the area. In SW19 the average house price currently stands at £2.9 million. As an average price, this is a high price even for those earning well on the tennis circuit year in and year out.
Most of the private homes that the tennis stars rent over the course of the tournament are rarely for sale, with families keeping homes for generations. They can expect to see a return of up to £10k per week to rent out a home during peak season, and the asking price would be as high as £6 million to £7 million in most cases. Keeping these homes in the family and renting them out to rich sporting stars for a few weeks at a time doesn’t bring with it much of an incentive to sell on.
To put the prices into context, at the average house price in the area of £2.9 million, a person would still have to earn around £400,000 per year in order to acquire a mortgage large enough for a detached Wimbledon property. When you consider stamp duty on top of that and legal costs, you can see why even the richest of the tennis stars playing at Wimbledon would think twice about buying property in the area. A deposit for a first-home in London is around the £92,000 mark on average, so even if you were to reach the third round of Wimbledon and used the £100,000 prize money as a deposit on a home, you’d only be left with around £8,000 to play with.
London House Prices Falling
Despite this latest news and the average house price in the Wimbledon area remaining too high even for the stars of the sport, there has been a continued fall in London house prices generally. This acceleration in
the market slump has reached its fastest pace since the autumn of 2009 when we were still feeling the after effects of the financial crash. During the spring quarter there was a 1.9% drop in property values in London compared with 2017. In the first quarter of this year there has been a 1% drop from the previous year.
It is the first time since 2009 that we have seen a drop in property values at such a pace, with four consecutive quarters leading to the average house price losing £9,297 in value in the last year alone.
UK Property Market Update
Nationwide has seen a slightly different story however, with Halifax stating that UK house prices have risen for a second month, despite the market remaining flat and the annual growth rate falling yet again.
The average house price in the UK has risen by £745 in June (a 0.3% increase), yet this annual rate of growth has fallen for the third month in a row at 1.8% when compared with the autumn figure of 4%. The pattern seems to be familiar with house prices right across the country rising up a notch, only to decrease in valuation a month or two down the line. It is a fluctuating, yet subdued house market currently. In London there is obviously the general trend of a higher valuation of property to begin with, but across the whole country we are seeing a similar pattern.
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