Million pound house sold every fortnight

A MILLION pound house is being sold every two weeks in Suffolk, the East Anglian Daily Times has learned.Land Registry figures show that six £1 million properties changed hands in the first three months of 2004 – compared to none just four years ago.

A MILLION pound house is being sold every two weeks in Suffolk, the East Anglian Daily Times has learned.

Land Registry figures show that six £1 million properties changed hands in the first three months of 2004 - compared to none just four years ago.

Price tags now routinely break the £2 million barrier, as the housing market in the region shows no signs of slowing down.

In last week's EADT property guide there were no fewer than six million pound properties, with Darsham House, near Saxmundham, topping the bill at £2.7 million.


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Mark Oliver, a director at FPD Savills Estate Agents in Ipswich, sold the first million pound house in East Suffolk in 1996.

He said: "Million pound houses are pretty much an everyday occurrence now.

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"I've been doing this since 1982 and I remember when the first million pound property came on the market in Suffolk - that's now pretty common.

"We've got a total of 12 available at the moment, three of which are above £2 million. This year we've already sold seven million-pound homes, and we've got another three under offer. It's absolutely staggering."

Mr Oliver said a lot of million pound homes are bought by people moving from London, who sell their relatively small but expensive properties in the city in favour of a move to the country.

"They can come out here, buy a house and commute into work," he added. "It's a life style change. It's extraordinary and bizarre how it's gone - the market is incredibly strong. I never ever thought I would see these days.

"I remember selling them for £250,000 in the eighties and that seemed a lot of money."

Mr Oliver, who said that million pound properties last an average of just six weeks on the market, added: "The other thing is that people have woken up to Suffolk. Now people have realised what a lovely place it is and they're prepared to commute.

He continued: "Looking to the future, the big question is what will happen to the market. It can't keep going ever but it is amazingly strong at the moment, and demand outstrips supply.

"I'm still pretty optimistic. It's too strong to go wrong at the moment."

Jonathan Penn, a partner in Jackson-Stops and Staff Estate Agents, said the company had 12 £1million plus houses on its books, four of which are valued at more than £2million.

He estimated that there were around 25 £1million or above properties in the county made ten broke the £2 million mark.

"When I started in 1986 the most expensive house we had on our books was around £200,000. It's hard to fathom because it doesn't seem that long ago.

"Now £200,000 would buy you a small cottage - that's the absurdity of it."

Mr Penn said there were a "combination of factors" behind Suffolk's move into the million pound league.

"Suffolk still represents great value compared with London and the Home Counties and it will always be protected by high values in London.

"Suffolk is an attractive place to come to - it's an unspoiled county, it's got the coast and it's accessible for the city.

"But I don't want people to think that we are just filling Suffolk with London exiles - there are plenty of home grown buyers as well."

Colin Girling, from the Suffolk branch of the National Association of Estate Agents, added: "There are some youngsters out here struggling to find £100,000, let alone a million. It all comes down to supply and demand.

"If you've got the demand people are trying to get top penny and if they think the market will stand it they'll go for it.

"Basically, if the buyers are there then we will continue to see these properties on the market. A million pounds doesn't buy you much in London but down here you get green fields, a big house and a nice quality of life."

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