House prices up by 1.6%

Source: lloydsbankinggroup.com

The latest House Price Index from Halifax reports house prices increased by 1.6% in September. This was the third consecutive monthly increase. On an annual basis, prices are currently down 7.4% on this time last year. The average UK house price is now £163,533.

Commenting, Martin Ellis, housing economist, said:
“House prices increased by 1.6% in September; the third consecutive monthly increase and the fifth so far this year. House prices nationally have risen by 1.7% since the end of 2008.

“The combination of increased demand and a low level of properties available for sale has pushed up house prices in recent months. The marked improvement in affordability due to the reduction in both property prices and interest rates since mid 2007 has been a key factor in stimulating higher demand.

“Continuing increases in unemployment and low earnings growth are likely to constrain the rise in demand. There are also some signs that the improvement in market conditions is encouraging more people to put their properties up for sale. This development could loosen market conditions by alleviating the current shortage of supply and curb the pace of house price growth evident in recent months.”

Halifax reports that the combination of increased demand and a low level of properties available for sale has pushed up house prices in recent months. The ratio of house sales to the stock of unsold properties on surveyors' book rose for the eighth successive month in August, indicating a tightening in market conditions, according to the latest RICS monthly survey.


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