BRIGHTON and Hove’s house prices are bucking the national trend, according to new figures.

The cost of buying a new home has increased by 2% on last year, with the average home in the city costing £310,981. Since 2002, house prices in the city have increased by 42%.

The Nationwide House Price Index results have not surprised the city’s estate agents, who say it has always been a desirable place to live.

They also agree a limited supply of homes coming on the market has pushed prices up.

‘Popular place’

James Epps from Oakley Residential, who is Brighton and Hove Estate Agent Association president for 2013, said: “Brighton and Hove is a popular place to live and is considered by many to offer a better quality of life.

“It’s commutable to London and close to the Downs and the sea and everything else that Brighton has to offer.

“Brighton is a very transient place and having a university also helps to bolster the market a bit.

“There’s not been a fantastic amount coming on the market in the last year or two so therefore what does come on tends to be sought after and snapped up, particularly centrally and along the seafront.

“It’s a slow but steady rise.”

Simon Candler from Baron’s Estates said particular areas where house prices are growing include New Church Road in Hove, Poets Corner in Hove, Hanover in Brighton, Queen’s Park and Seven Dials.

He said: “There are only a finite number of houses that come on the market and the demand for them is really good.”

Andy Garth from Barrie Alderton Estate Agents said: “There are technical reasons why house prices are continuing to rise in the city.

“Firstly the stamp duty threshold of £250,000 ended in March.

“A lot of people can’t afford to move so there are fewer houses coming on the market, so less supply but there is still a demand."

Alex Mackay from Mishon Mackay said: “The price increase does depend what part of the market you are working in.

“Between £250,000 and £600,000 I would agree there’s been some increase but at top end there hasn’t been much change.

“The value of your house is just what someone is prepared to pay for it.

“But this is a good indication that things are positive and people are thinking positively.”