House prices rise and 2016 looks like another difficult year for home buying

Wed, 16 Dec 2015

House prices rise and 2016 looks like another difficult year for home buying
It is no surprise, in fact, it is practically the norm, that house prices are rising in the UK, and newly released figures show that this is a trend that hasn't abated, and isn't going away soon.

According to the Office of National Statistics, in the 12 months leading up to October 2015, house prices increased by 7.0 per cent.

During the 12 months leading up to September 2015, house prices rose by 6.1 per cent, indicating a steep incline to the rate at which these prices are increases.

However, the prices in London and the South East drastically alter these figures. Discounting the house prices in these areas, the increase up to October 2015 was just 5.6 per cent. So while the market isn't looking good for people wishing to buy anywhere in the UK, it is more inhospitable market in the south-eastern section of the country.

As usual, the people struggling with the housing market the most are those trying to get into it for the first time. First time buyers reportedly spent 5.9 per cent more on their first home in October 2015 than October 2014.

This is despite the Help to Buy schemes, and other home buying aid, which was supposed to help people get onto the first rung of the property ladder, people are still struggling.

The average house price apparently hit £300,000 in England, while in Scotland it hit £196,000, and Wales and Northern Ireland average prices are still under £175,000.

The Help to Buy ISA is one scheme which hasn't yet been fully tested. Having only become available on 01 December, there has not been enough time to determine if it is enough to help enough people get onto the housing ladder that it will make a dent in the average house prices. However, if it goes the same way as the previous Help to Buy schemes, it will make a big difference to certain individuals who utilise it, but not to the market as a whole.

2016, therefore, seems set to be another difficult year for those trying to buy a home for the first time.
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