HOUSE prices dropped more than average for the South East in Test Valley in July, new figures show.

The drop contributes to the longer-term trend, which has seen property prices in the area suffer a 0.5% annual decline .

The average Test Valley house price in July was £318,495, Land Registry figures show – a 1.1% decrease on June.

Over the month, the picture was similar to that across the South East, where prices decreased 0.7% , and Test Valley underperformed compared to the 0.5% rise for the UK as a whole.

Over the last year, the average sale price of property in Test Valley remained level – putting the area 29th among the South East’s 67 local authorities for annual growth.

The best annual growth in the region was in Dartford, where properties increased on average by 5%, to £306,000. At the other end of the scale, properties in Basingstoke and Deane dropped 7.3% in value, giving an average price of £283,000.

Winners and Losers

Owners of detached houses fared worst in Test Valley in July – they dropped 1.2% in price, to £499,264 on average . Over the last year, prices dropped by 0.4%.

Among other types of property:

Terraced: down 1.0% monthly; down 0.4% annually; £245,642 averageFlats: down 0.8% monthly; down 1.5% annually; £171,455 average

First steps on the property ladder

First-time buyers in Test Valley spent an average of £ 251,000 on their property – £1,300 less than a year ago, and £48,800 more than in Jul-14.

By comparison, former owner-occupiers paid £ 363,600 on average in July – 44.8% more than first-time buyers.

How do property prices in Test Valley compare?

Buyers paid 0.6% less than the average price in the South East (£320,000) in July for a property in Test Valley. Across the South East, property prices are high compared to those across the UK, where the average cost £233,000.

The most expensive properties in the South East were in Elmbridge – £588,000 on average, and 1.8 times as much as in Test Valley. Elmbridge properties cost 2.9 times as much as homes in Southampton (£203,000 average), at the other end of the scale.

The highest property prices across the UK were in Kensington and Chelsea, where the average July sale price of £1.3 million could buy 15 properties in Burnley (average £84,000).

Average property price in July

Test Valley: £318,495The South East: £320,454UK: £232,710Annual growth to July

Test Valley: -0.5%The South East: -2.0%UK: +0.7%Best and worst annual growth in the South East

Dartford: +5.0%Basingstoke and Deane: -7.3%