HOUSE sellers' asking prices in London and the Home Counties have made the strongest gains since the financial crisis struck, while those in County Durham and Teesside have among the furthest distance still to recover, according to a property website.

With an average price tag of £1.5m, average asking prices in central London and the City now tower 41.9 per cent above the levels seen when the housing market was at its pre-crisis peak in May 2008, Rightmove has found.

West London, which like central London has been a strong pull for wealthy overseas investors, has seen the next strongest price growth since the previous peak of the market, with average property asking prices now standing at £564,192, which is 41.7 per cent higher than in May 2008.

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The study, which covered England and Wales, found that at the other end of the scale, property prices in County Durham had the biggest percentage jump still left to climb to reach their levels at the previous peak of the market.

The average asking price in County Durham stands at £114,554, which is 13.4 per cent below the typical amount requested by sellers in May 2008.

In Teesside, asking prices are still around 9.1 per cent below 2008 levels.

All areas of London have seen asking prices increase by at least 30 per cent when compared with May 2008, Rightmove said.

North Yorkshire bucked the general northern trend, with asking prices there having nudged above the previous peak of the market.

Those in North Yorkshire have reached £244,776, which is 0.1 per cent higher than in 2008.

But stepping over the North Yorkshire border into Lancashire, asking prices in the county are still 9 per cent below the peak of the market, at £153,339 typically.