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Fears over spiralling property prices

MORE people are now worried about surging house prices than being stuck in negative equity in 10 out of 12 regions in the UK as fears about homes becoming unaffordable spread across the country, a report has found.

Consumer group the HomeOwners Alliance, which campaigns for property owners and people trying to get on the housing ladder, said its research shows concerns over high house prices amid a scarcity of homes for people to choose from have become a "national issue".

The report surveyed more than 2,500 people, including homeowners and people who do not own a house.

More people think house prices are a "very serious issue" compared with those who are concerned about their home losing so much value they are stuck in negative equity in Scotland, Wales, Yorkshire and the Humber, the North West, the West Midlands, the East Midlands, the South West, the South East and London.

When asked what housing issues were serious, 32% of people in Scotland chose house prices, 24% picked negative equity and 38% ticked housing availability.

Paula Higgins, chief executive of the HomeOwners Alliance, said: "Talk about the housing crisis has spread across the UK as homeowners everywhere have become worried housing is becoming unaffordable and owning their own home is becoming an impossible dream for young people."

New figures released by building society Nationwide showed the price gap between homes in London and those in the rest of the UK is now at the widest levels on its records.

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