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