Figures released by Zoopla’s House Price Index show there is still massive demand to buy houses in Oldham, despite the growing cost of living crisis.

Oldham is just one of a handful of areas in the North West that is showing extremely high demand for homes in comparison to the five-year average.

Demand for properties in the borough is up 65 per cent above the five-year average, with only Warrington at 70 per cent and Preston up by 60 per cent, showing similar levels.

Analysis by Zoopla reveals this trend is due to a continued desire for people to move as a result of the pandemic, with flexible working arrangements offsetting the current rise in the cost of living and higher mortgage rates.

A consumer survey by the property company found a strong link between home working and a desire to move with those working from home more than five times more likely to move than those who don’t see any changes in their working patterns.

And while demand for homes has slowed over the course of 2022 across the country, it remains 25 per cent above average over the last five years and on par with this time last year.

The national figure puts house prices at an average £256,000 –  which is up 8.3 per cent year-on-year and above the five-year average of 4.3 per cent.

Meanwhile, the average property price in Oldham is currently at £166,200 – a rise of 11.5 per cent year-on-year.

Zoopla expects the cost-of-living crisis is unlikely to be felt within the housing market until at least 2023.

However, it notes that the effect of the costs crisis will start to ‘ripple’ through the property market towards the end of 2022.

The property group said fears of a market crash and double-digit price falls are unwarranted in light of the data as there is no sign of a drop-off in buyer interest.

The stronger-than-expected desire for households to move means that housing sales are on track to reach 1.3 million – 100,000 more than was originally forecast at the start of the year.

While growth rates are set to drop, Richard Donnell, research director at Zoopla, told would-be-buyers and sellers not to panic.

Mr Donnell added: “The housing market is not immune from higher mortgage rates which we are starting to see increase quickly.

"Buyer interest is expected to slow over the coming months as people tighten their belts and spend with more caution which will see price growth weaken further.

"Whilst we don’t expect current trends to lead to a marked drop in house prices next year, buyers will become more wary and it is important sellers are realistic when pricing their homes to sell”.