The Government is to produce a monthly house-price survey through the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister (ODPM)
Launching early next year, the new figures will be index linked and the data will be taken from a variety of sources, including the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML), the Land Registry Department and lenders.
A spokesman for the ODPM said: ‘We already produce a quarterly house-price index, but we have always thought there is a need for a monthly index. One of the reasons we decided to do this is we have vast streams of data coming from across Britain. We are getting so much information electronically that we can now put it out monthly.’
The ODPM denied the new survey is in response to conflicting data from other sources, specifically Nationwide and Halifax, although it acknowledged the surveys do tend to differ.
The August survey from Halifax found house prices rising at 18.8% down from 20.8% in July, while Nationwide reported house prices jumped 2.5% in August from July.
Richard Hurst, communications manager at Future Mortgages, said the new survey would not cloud the issue further.
‘The benefit of having a lot of these surveys is that you can aggregate them. If you have one then you either believe it or not. If there are three you can see the middle ground. Although the statistics may be robust, individual surveys may have different criteria,’ he said.
The new monthly survey will not be just an extension of the current quarterly survey.
The ODPM said: ‘It will use the value of transactions to weight together the information to form its mix-adjusted index while Nationwide and Halifax effectively use the number of transactions.’