If you are thinking of buying a new house in Manchester, you might think doing your research is as simple as asking your property accountants if the market across the city is strong at the moment.
But Manchester property accountants are seeing some highly localised patterns of buying and selling at present, making it much more difficult to give an assessment of how property transactions are faring for the city as a whole.
Head north to Salford, for instance, and figures from Lloyds Bank show a 51% rise in property sales in the six months to September 2013, one of the biggest increases in the country.
Only Newham in East London (62%), Redhill in Surrey (56%) and Farnborough in Hampshire (52%) outranked Salford in the six-month period, according to the bank’s analysis of Land Registry data.
By contrast, Hyde saw one of the largest drops in transactions in the same period, at 9%, the same as Caterham in Surrey and beaten only by Crowborough in East Sussex (10%).
So is it possible to generalise? Well, there are a few things that can be said – Hyde is certainly an exception, as only three of the nine towns where transactions fell in the period were outside of the south.
Across the north-west as a whole, 98% of towns saw an increase in activity – this compares with the 2008 edition of the survey, when 100% of towns in the whole of England and Wales saw a decline.