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Rural property demand 'far outstrips supply'

The ratio between the number of applicants per available house in the British countryside is now reportedly 15 to one.According to the latest research the problem is the most acute in the south-east and south-west of England, with up to 29 people applying for a single property in Tunbridge Wells, Ascot and Worcester.Estate agent Knight Frank says that City bonuses and overseas buyers are contributing to the increased demand. The number of interested buyers has risen by 21 per cent since January, three percentage points ahead of the number of available houses. Today's survey shows that during the last three months manor houses, farmhouses and cottages have increased in value by an average of 3.1 per cent, giving an annualised growth rate of 12.4 per cent. "The current average price of a manor house has now broken the £3 million barrier," said Knight Frank's head of residential research Liam Bailey. "Payment of City bonuses together with an increasing international presence in the country house market has aided price growth," he continued. "Prices of manor houses, farmhouses and country cottages have risen by £4,516, £13,474 and £34,241 per month on average since December."

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