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House prices: Statistics ‘do not give a clear picture of the market’

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OFFICIAL figures which show the average price of a three-bed house in Jersey is £664,000 do not accurately reflect the local market, an estate agent has said.

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Harry Trower, director of Broadlands, said that the sale of large, high-value homes has distorted the average figure – and that the actual price of most family homes is between £500,000 and £600,000.

Mr Trower was responding to figures contained in the latest House Price Index released this week by Statistics Jersey.

‘The problem is generalising too much. The busiest part of the market for three-bedroom houses is those that go for between £500,000 and £600,000,’ he said. ‘If you say that the average price is over £660,000 none of those houses will fall into that range.

‘I read the report and they were absolutely spot on with the price of flats but that is because there is much less activity.

‘The statistics just do not give a clear picture of the market.’

And Mr Trower added that he thought the statistics for certain property types should be broken down into more specific values.

‘If you do a combination of facts and figures [in the report] then sure, include a big average figure,’ he said.

‘But also say how many properties were sold for £600,000 and how many were two- or three-bedroom houses, for example, or how many properties sold for £650,000 and then start to separate those into four-bedroom homes.

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‘To tell people the average price of a three-bedroom house in Jersey is £664,000 does not best give an indication of where the action is in the market.’

Roger Trower, the company’s chief executive, also thought that the statistics did not paint an accurate picture of the market.

‘If you have old States-loaned houses [included in the statistics] that are, let’s say, three or four-bedroom, which are between £575,000 and £675,000 but in the same body of work they then put a four-bed detached at the new Living Legend site – which are going for about £1.2 million – that skews the numbers.’

Ed Taylor

By Ed Taylor
Journalist

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