There are many theories on property prices but nothing beats a traditional view of demand vs supply.

Old for sale sign on old green doors.

You are the best judge of demand local to your country and area, I wanted to understand the supply dynamics driving the complaint of many would-be UK purchasers that “there’s not much on the market”.

Happily the UK Land Registry makes available historical price paid data for properties sold in England & Wales since 1995 as part of the Open Data initiative

Key findings from analysing the last 20 years of housing sales are that:

  • Over 50% of properties have never been sold or not been on the market
  • Other properties tend to have a relatively long gap between purchases


This is the breakdown of housing stock and how many times individual properties have been sold in the period:

A side-effect of the ageing population is that people stay longer in their property. Combined with long-term buy-to-let holdings here are two important candidate reasons for the underlying scarcity of property.

So with minimal supply from the existing stock of housing are property price movements and the struggle to find a dream home surprising?

Your views are welcome.