Looking back through the reign

Many congratulations Your Majesty! 70 years on the throne. 70 years watching the world innovate and evolve. 70 years of the highest highs and some of the lowest lows. You’ve carried yourself with grace, poise and elegance throughout.

How the world has changed over those 70 years and the property market hasn’t been immune to it. Few of us are old enough to remember it all but as we are celebrating a hugely significant milestone it seemed only fitting to look back at our industry over that time.

1953 and Princess Elizabeth is being coronated and beginning her journey to become the longest reigning monarch in British history. The average house price is £1,520 and wages rose across the decade from £5 - £9 per week and Heinz Baked Beans were 5½d.

1965 and the Queen makes the first State visit to West Germany since 1913 and marks the 20 year anniversary of the ending of World War II. House prices have risen to £3,340 but wages have struggled to keep pace. The country is gripped by Beatlemania.

Fast forward to 1981 and the wedding of Prince Charles to Diana Spencer. House prices were still on the rise and an average property cost £24,000, however, a rapid increase was on the way and by the end of the decade the average prices had almost tripled. This year also carried some of the highest levels of interest rates recorded after the high of 17% in 1979 with lending on mortgages still hitting hard.

The early 1990’s heralded a national recession with 1992 a particularly difficult year for The Queen who endured her ‘Annus Horribilus’. The separation of Charles and Diana was joined by Princess Anne divorcing Mark Phillips and Prince Andrew separating from Sarah Ferguson. House prices were averaging around £53,000 which was lower than the peak of the late 80’s.

From the late 1990’s to 2007 house prices grew exponentially. Prices rose from £56,000 in 1997 to just over £180,000 in 2007 before the recession of 2008 where prices dropped to a level of £150,000 in 2009. The market slowly recovered after this and late 2019 saw an active market but an approaching pandemic. Little were we to know how the market would react after lockdown and prices have increased again.

Sadly 2021 saw the loss of Prince Phillip during the rigours of lockdown at the grand age of 99. This year marks 70 years on the throne and average house prices sit at £274,000 after a 10% rise in value over the last year.

The last 70 years have seen trials and tribulations for both The Queen and the property market. Let’s hope that the Jubilee celebrations allow us time to reflect on how far we’ve come and appreciate a truly impressive monarch.

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