House prices continue to fall across the UK

Tue, 29 Aug 2017

House prices continue to fall across the UK
Figures from the Nationwide show that house growth fell from 2.9 per cent in July to 2.1 per cent in August.

August also saw property values fall for the first time since May, dropping 0.1 per cent month-on-month. They now sit at an average £210,495, but experts are still predicting a 2 per cent rise in property values across 2017.

Mortgage rates have also remained close to all-time lows.

"Wages have been failing to keep up with the cost of living in recent months and consumer sentiment has weakened," said Robert Gardner, Nationwide's chief economist.

"In some respects, the slowdown in the housing market is surprising, given the ongoing strength of the labour market."

Over the three-month period to June, 125,000 new jobs were created, with unemployment dropping to 4 per cent, the lowest rate seen in the last forty years.

"Ultimately, housing market developments will depend on wider economic performance. The UK economy slowed noticeably in the first half of the year, and there has been little to suggest a significant rebound in the months ahead," said Mr Gardner.

"While employment growth has remained robust, household budgets are under pressure. This suggests that housing market activity will remain subdued."

Despite the continuing slowdown in the UK's housing market, Nationwide still believes that house prices will rise by around 2 per cent this year, primarily due to the decrease in the number of new homes entering the market.

Nationwide also found that the amount of money raised through stamp duty had risen, reaching around £12.8bn in the year to mid-2017. This is considerably higher than the £10.6bn peak of late 2007.
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