The number of second homes in the UK is expected to increase to more than 250,000 this year as the fashion for taking holidays in the UK grows, believes Knight Frank.

According to figures from the agency’s research department, the number of second homes rose by 2.6 per cent in 2009, following a slight decline of 0.4 per cent in 2008. They estimate a further 2 per cent rise this year, taking the total number of UK second homes above a quarter of a million.

Head of research Liam Bailey says increased demand for self-catering accommodation throughout the year has enabled buyers to look on a second home as an investment rather than a luxury.