ANALYSIS of new figures reveals that Blackwater was the most expensive area of Test Valley to buy a house in last year.

Zoopla said the data highlights how localised the housing market across England and Wales is, with prices often reflecting the housing stock available in an area.

Data from the Office for National Statistics reveals that of the 20 council wards in Test Valley, Blackwater saw the highest median house price in 2021, of £695,000.

This was followed by Ampfield and Braishfield (£650,000) and Harewood (£610,000).

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By contrast, the cheapest parts of Test Valley to purchase property were Andover St Mary's, which had a median house price of £224,250, Andover Harroway (£268,500) and Andover Romans (£269,500).

The median – the middle number in a series – is used to ensure the figures are not skewed by extreme highs or lows.

Meanwhile, the number of homes sold in Test Valley rose from 1,910 in 2020 to 2,273 last year.

Of sales last year, 11 per cent (252) were in Andover Romans – making it the busiest area for buyers.

At the other end of the scale, Ampfield and Braishfield saw just 31 properties sold in 2021, earning it the title of quietest area of Test Valley's property market.

The Centre for Economics and Business Research said that following a period of significant growth during the pandemic, it expects house prices to experience downward pressure over the next year, as a result of sharp rises in mortgage rates.

Karl Thompson, an economist at the think tank, said the strongest price contractions are expected outside of London and the South East, causing greater regional price disparities.

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The number of residential property sales in England increased by 21 per cent to 821,407 between the end of 2020 and the end of last year.

Grainne Gilmore, head of research at Zoopla, said property values vary widely in large part because of the differing housing stock between areas – some neighbourhoods will have a higher number of five-bedroom detached homes, while others will be home to more flats and smaller properties.

But she said the difference between more and less expensive areas may start to narrow.

She added: "The demand for larger detached homes during the pandemic has pushed average values for houses higher over the last year, while price growth for flats has lagged.

"But there are signs that demand for flats in city centres is gaining momentum, so we could see faster rising prices in this part of the market."

The ONS figures also reveal the trendiest areas – the ones which saw the fastest growth in sales – in Test Valley.

Of the eight wards with at least 100 properties sold, Andover Harroway saw 60 per cent more properties sold in 2021 than in 2020, followed by Andover Millway (34 per cent) and Andover Winton (25 per cent).

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