Houghton is the region’s property hotspot, claims North East estate agent KIS Housing.
But rival Bill Kimmitt, of Kimmitt and Roberts, says the firm has over-stated the rise in the town’s housing market.
Kis Housing’s NOW - North of Watford – survey, says prices in Houghton have now grown by 7.1 per cent in just eight weeks.
But Mr Kimmit said the situation on the ground was different, with prices rising by little more than one per cent in the last year.
“It would be fantastic if it were true, but it’s not,” he said.
“They have compared figures month-on-month. But that means one or two big sales are enough to distort the figures.
“You need to look at it on at least a quarterly basis.
“The good news is that the property market is moving. There is more activity than last year – but last year was very quiet.
“The market is definitely improving – just very, very slowly.”