Mixed fortunes for UK house prices

During the year to July average house prices decreased in England (-1.5%), Wales (-0.1%), Scotland (-1.8%) and Northern Ireland (-4.1%).

Average house prices decreased in eight of the nine English regions over the year to July 2011. The largest decrease was in the West Midlands (-4.6%) while the smallest was in the East and South East (both -1%). London registered an annual house price increase (0.9%).

Over the month to July there were average price rises in seven regions, ranging from 0.1% in the Yorkshire and the Humber to 3.4% in the North West. There were average monthly price falls of -0.4% in the West Midlands and -0.8% in the North East.

Average mix-adjusted house prices in July stood at £215,146 in England, £141,474 in Northern Ireland, £165,687 in Scotland and £150,161 in Wales.

London remains the English region with the highest average house price (£347,271). The North East has the lowest average price at £133,163.

In England, southern regions including the East of England, London, the South East and South West all had average prices above the UK average in July.
Excluding London and the South East, the average UK price in July was £170,615, a decrease of 2.5% over the year.

The average price for properties bought by first-time buyers decreased by 0.5% to £154,334 over the year to July 2011, compared to an annual decrease of 2.2% in June. During July prices paid by first-time buyers rose by 0.8% on average, compared to a 0.9% monthly decrease in July last year.

The average price of properties bought by former owner occupiers decreased by 1.9% to £240,583 over the year to July 2011, compared to an annual decrease of 2% in June. During July prices paid by former owner occupiers fell by 0.1% on average, compared to a 0.2% decrease in July last year.

The average price for pre-owned dwellings decreased by 2.1% to £208,309 over the year to July, compared to an annual decrease of 2.4% in June. During July 2011 rices paid for pre-owned dwellings were unchanged from the previous month, compared to a 0.3% monthly decrease during the same period last year.

The average price paid for new properties increased by 6.7% to £199,847 over the year to July, compared to an annual increase of 3.2% in June. During July 2011 prices paid for new properties increased by 2.5% on average, compared to a monthly fall of 0.9% in July last year. Month on month price changes in new build properties tend to be more volatile, reflecting low transaction levels.

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Housing market defies August price dip

UK house prices increased further in August, buoyed by a 1.6% rise in London, according to the latest figures from LSL Property Services.

Transactions up were 1.5%, bucking the seasonal trend, while the sale of flats is now 80% below market peak.

LSL Property Services director David Newnes said: "The property market bounced back this summer, with consecutive months of price rises following falls between April and June. While some regions have seen prices fall, the rate of fall has shrunk.

"The housing market across the country is moving in the right direction. Prices in London rose most, thanks to all the cash buyers pushing up demand. In London, there are more buyers with large deposits and they are less exposed to the squeeze on mortgages that is hitting first-time buyers so hard.

"Transactions also rose 1.5% which completely defies the classic summer slowdown. Transactions usually fall about 1.5% between July and August. 2011 looks significantly better than usual. People who already own property are driving these sales. Mortgage finance is very cheap at the moment – it’s just hard to get if you don’t have a hefty deposit.

"With major lenders like Santander cutting their mortgage rates by 1% this week, buyers who are able to put up at least a quarter of the value of their purchase can pick up bargains. The fact that the properties are so reasonably priced is also helping allay lenders’ fears about borrowers’ ability to pay for their loans.

"But first timers with less money can’t get a mortgage easily and that’s obviously a major hurdle to getting a foot on the property ladder. The ratio of flat to detached house sales has changed radically.

"The number of flats sold has fallen almost twice as far from 2007 as detached homes. While the large number of newly built flats that came onto the market in 2007 boosted transactions, this is largely the result of the slowing of the market for first-time buyers in the last four years and the limited availability of mortgage finance at higher LTVs.

"The UK housing market is now not only fragmented by region, but also by property type, with owners of larger detached property holding much more equity since the credit crisis than those of more modest homes."

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One thought on “Mixed fortunes for UK house prices

  1. Britain Loans

    Strangely, for Estate Agents, it is always a good time to buy. Even when the average house is 7 times the average salary and most people are struggling to get by with much worse to come as outlined by Howard. Howard also points out prices are expected to fall – here in NI they are currently falling at 15% per year (UUJ). Estate Agents and house prices both need to get real – coming out with this guff just proves EAs are part of the problem – and blinded to the solution by their unfounded ‘optimism’. Oh, and because they are ‘quite’ busy, they have closed their Ormeau Road office!

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