In the 12 months to August 2013 UK house prices increased by 3.8%, up from a 3.3% increase in the 12 months to July 2013 according to latest house price data from the ONS.
House price growth remains stable across most of the UK, although prices in London are increasing faster than the UK average.
The year-on-year increase reflected growth of 4.1% in England, 1.1% in Northern Ireland and 1.0% in Wales, offset by a fall of 0.7% in Scotland.
In August 2013, the UK HPI surpassed its previous peak in January 2008 (185.5) by 0.3%.
Annual house price increases in England were driven by London (8.7%), the East Midlands (3.8%) and the West Midlands (3.5%).
Excluding London and the South East, UK house prices increased by 2.1% in the 12 months to August 2013.
On a seasonally adjusted basis, UK house prices increased by 0.5% between July and August 2013.
In August 2013, prices paid by first-time buyers were 4.9% higher on average than in August 2012. For owner-occupiers (existing owners), prices increased by 3.3% for the same period.
Peter Rollings, CEO at Marsh & Parsons, comments:
“A healthy recovery continues across most parts of the UK with house prices climbing steadily and passing the previous peak of January 2008. However, prices are still well below the market highs of 2007, and the recovery in many parts of the UK is relatively muted. Northern Ireland and Wales saw modest increases, while average values in Scotland actually fell compared to last year.
“The London property market operates on an entirely different level to the rest of the country. Across the capital, annual price increases of 9% positively dwarf those in the rest of the UK, and in Prime London this is even higher – we have recorded an 11% increase compared to last year.
“Rather than create a bubble, we may find that Help to Buy actually stabilises prices by encouraging first-time sellers to put their properties on the market and take their next step up the property ladder. For the past three quarters, a lack of available property has created an extraordinary premium for those on the market but we are now seeing a gradual increase in supply. In Prime London, we recorded a 5% increase in the number of properties available on the market in the last quarter. This meant that the ratio of supply and demand has begun to stabilise for the first time in a year – which can only be good news for those wanting to buy.”
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