UK HOUSE PRICES IN­CREASE BY 3.5% AN­NU­ALLY AS LON­DON VAL­UES FALL

Western Morning News (Saturday) - - News -

House prices in Eng­land are grow­ing at a slower an­nual rate than those in the rest of the UK as prop­erty val­ues in Lon­don con­tinue to fall, of­fi­cial fig­ures show. Across the UK, house prices in­creased by 3.5% in the year to Septem­ber to reach £233,000 on av­er­age, fig­ures re­leased jointly by the Of­fice for Na­tional Sta­tis­tics (ONS), Land Registry and other bod­ies show. Prices were un­changed month-on-month.

An­nual house price growth in Eng­land was slower in Septem­ber than that in Scot­land, Wales and North­ern Ire­land, the re­port said.

House prices in Eng­land in­creased by 3% in the year to Septem­ber, tak­ing the av­er­age prop­erty value there to £249,000.

In Wales and Scot­land, house prices in­creased by 5.8% an­nu­ally, tak­ing av­er­age prices in Wales to £162,000 and those in Scot­land to £153,000.

House prices in North­ern Ire­land in­creased by 4.8% over the year to £135,000 on av­er­age.

Within Eng­land, house prices in Lon­don fell by 0.3% an­nu­ally. Lon­don house prices have fallen over the year each month since March 2018.

At the other end of the spec­trum, prop­erty val­ues in the Mid­lands saw the strong­est growth among Eng­land's re­gions, with prices in the West Mid­lands ris­ing by 6.1% an­nu­ally and those in the East Mid­lands in­creas­ing by 6% an­nu­ally. While an­nual house price growth in the south and east of Eng­land is slow­ing, they re­main the most ex­pen­sive ar­eas to pur­chase a prop­erty.

Lon­don is the re­gion with the high­est av­er­age house price at £482,000, fol­lowed by the South East and the East of Eng­land, at £328,000 and £294,000 re­spec­tively.

The re­gion in Eng­land with the low­est av­er­age house price con­tin­ues to be the North East, at £132,000.

The North East is the only English re­gion where prices are yet to re­cover to pre-eco­nomic down­turn lev­els.

Jeremy Leaf, a north Lon­don es­tate agent and a for­mer res­i­den­tial chair­man of the Royal In­sti­tu­tion of Char­tered Sur­vey­ors (Rics), said: "The price falls in Lon­don are mask­ing a more re­silient pic­ture else­where in the coun­try, un­der­lin­ing how mislead­ing it can be to judge the mar­ket as a whole by what is hap­pen­ing in one re­gion. The big­gest prob­lem we are find­ing, on the ground, is lack of trans­ac­tions and the time re­quired to bring them to fruition."

He said af­ford­abil­ity is­sues, par­tic­u­larly in Lon­don, are a prob­lem.

Mark Man­ning, manag­ing direc­tor of Leeds-based es­tate agent Man­ning Stain­ton, said: "The lead-up to Christ­mas will be more sub­dued than re­cent months, but things will re­ally pick up af­ter the Christ­mas hol­i­days and I ex­pect the whole mar­ket will ex­pe­ri­ence a strong month in Jan­uary."

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