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‘Modest’ spring bounce sees house prices rise 0.7 per cent in April

  • 19/06/2019
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‘Modest’ spring bounce sees house prices rise 0.7 per cent in April
House prices rose by 0.7 per cent in April, down from the one per cent growth seen the month before, according to the latest UK House Price Index from the Land Registry.

As a result, annual house price growth dropped from 1.6 per cent in the year to March to 1.4 per cent in the 12 months to April.

Strongest growth was seen in Wales, where prices have now jumped by 6.7 per cent over the year.

Northern Ireland has seen prices rise by 3.5 per cent over the year, while the East Midlands has been the strongest English region, with prices up 2.9 per cent.

At the other end of the scale, London has seen the worst performance, with prices dropping by 1.2 per cent over the period, though this is still an improvement on the 2.5 per cent fall registered in the 12 months to March.

The South East has also seen prices fall over the year, in this case by 0.8 per cent.

All other regions of the UK have seen positive house price growth over the term.


Modest spring bounce

Jonathan Hopper, managing director of Garrington Property Finders, said that while this year’s spring bounce is “modest”, the stagnation of the first quarter has now been replaced with a “cautious equilibrium”.

“Sellers are being coaxed back to the market by the gradual return of stable demand, and activity levels are brisk,” he continued.

“The Brexit hiatus may be temporary, but for now it has been enough to nudge increasing numbers of value-conscious buyers to get off the fence and strike.”

Jeremy Leaf, estate agent and former residential chairman of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, noted that house prices in London were “acting as a drag” on a market which was softening anyway.

He continued: “Despite renewed interest from buyers there are too many sellers still wedded to the idea that prices will increase perhaps when Brexit is resolved and/or some political stability returns.

“The reality is that only those sellers who are realistic enough to recognise new market conditions are proving successful.”


Chasing yields

Gareth Lewis, commercial director of MT Finance, said that while the market continues to be “muted” there is an absence of “doom and gloom”.

He added that house prices picking up outside of London and the South East added more balance to the country as a whole, and noted that transactions in areas such as Middlesbrough, Nottingham, Newcastle and university towns are picking up as investors chase yield.

“Values are therefore creeping up in response to greater demand for property in those areas,” he added.


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