Mortgages  

House prices continue to climb, reports Halifax

Data gathered by the lender found that house prices increased 1.1 per cent from October to November, which was the 10th successive monthly rise this year.

The Halifax HPI also found that activity in the housing market continued to show an upward trend. Home sales increased for the sixth successive month in October from 72,162 to 94,950, a 24 per cent increase from October 2012, based on HM Revenue & Customs’ seasonally adjusted figures.

Martin Ellis, housing economist for the Halifax, said: “Low interest rates, improvements in consumer confidence and official schemes, such as Funding for Lending and Help to Buy, all appear to have boosted demand.”

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In addition, on the supply side, he said housebuilding shows a positive trend. New housing in the private sector increased 10 per cent between the second and third quarters of 2013, rising to 26,380 from 23,742, which is the highest level since 2007.

Mr Ellis added: “A revival in housebuilding should help bring supply and demand into better balance and curb upward pressure on prices over the medium and longer terms.”

He added that continuing pressures on household finances are expected to remain a constraint on the rate of growth of house prices.

Adviser view

Andrew Montlake, director for London-based Coreco, said: “While many of us agree on the economic importance of the housing sector, there is a real worry this will cause a house price boom that, if left unchecked, could cause as many problems as it solves. A clear, workable exit strategy has always been needed to ensure the UK housing market does not become stuck on stimulus. Locking into a low rate now may prove to be a wise move.”

Change in UK house prices

UK House prices November 2013
(seasonally adjusted)

Annual change+7.7%
Quarterly change+2.1%
Monthly change

+1.1%

Average price

£174,910