Saturday, 8 October 2011

Norwich line index moves back to Colchester

Back in the halcyon days of cheap rail fares, the equation of London mortgage vs. Suffolk mortgage plus annual season pushed the commuting limit on the Norwich line up as far as Diss, and all along the route house prices rose right up to the crash of 2008. Since then, London house prices have thrived while Suffolk stays in the doldrums. And what's worse, the above-inflation series of rail fare increases, with a real budget busting increase to come in January, will tip the equation even further the other way.

The balance point has now moved back to Colchester - about where things were in 1978, before electrification. To make Suffolk a more attractive place for London workers, either Suffolk house prices must fall further in real terms, rail fares must fall in real terms, or London house prices must race even further ahead. 

Of course not everyone in Suffolk is unhappy that the county is becoming less attractive to incomers ...


Greg Tingey said...

A tory guvmint completely screws up the railways, a Labour one promises change, actually does nothing, or even makes it worse, then the Tories proceed to carry on with the screw-up.
[ 1963-73 & 1993-2011 ]

Stuff the lot of them.

outsider said...

The current artificially low interest/mortgage rates may be distorting the equation. And most people would expect relative costs of transport to rise over the years.

Windmills and unicorns.... said...

I wonder how many people will make the connection between the electrification of the railways, and the rise in cost of travel? When electricity costs are rising 8-10% per year, it's a bit rich to blame the railways for raising their fares 8%. So, how are you enjoying the carbon taxes and windmills?

This problem, is yet another example of the governments ridiculous energy policy. When reliable, relatively cheap power generation plants (and in todays world that is nuclear) are built then an economic renewal and stability in energy prices will occur.