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North-south property divide widens

The north-south divide in house prices is widening, according to new figures.

Britain's Property Rich List 2011, released by property website Zoopla.co.uk, shows that, although house prices in some of the country's most expensive areas have fallen a little over the past year, they have held up better than less expensive areas.

And while Kensington in London emerges as the most expensive place to live, most of us can only dream of living there.

With average house prices close to £1.75 million, the average UK homeowner would only be able to afford 173 sq ft in the exclusive area, according to Zoopla, which provides free online value estimates for every home in the UK.

According to the figures, the highest value areas to live are mainly in London and Surrey, with average prices ranging from £680,611 to £1,737,862.

In contrast, the lowest value areas seem to be in the North - the lowest in Middlesbrough, with others in the top 20 including Grimsby, Sheffield, Liverpool, Hull, Doncaster and Bradford, with prices ranging from £41,601 to £78,579.

Nick Leeming, business development director at Zoopla.co.uk, said: "Despite the recent property market uncertainty, Brits remain obsessed with the value of their home as well as those of their neighbours, friends and family.

"This year's Property Rich List shows an ever-widening North-South divide and, whilst house prices in some of the most expensive areas of the country have fallen a little over the past 12 months, they have held up far better than in many of the less expensive areas."

According to the list, Britain is now home to 220,131 property millionaires, down from 223,119 this time last year.

And there are now 5,922 streets where average house prices are more than £1 million. London tops the list with the most "million pound streets" with 2,290, followed by Surrey commuter hotspot Guildford with 89 and Cobham, also in Surrey, third with 78.

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