House prices decline for fourth month

House prices decline for fourth month

Average house prices in England and Wales declined for the fourth straight month in a row in July, according to the latest Your Move house price index.

The index, which uses data from LSL Property Services and Acadata, showed the average house price declined by 0.2 per cent in June, taking it to £303,960, compared with £308,775 in February 2018.

The monthly decline was the lowest percentage reduction in value of the past four months of declines, however.

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In May, prices had fallen by 0.3 per cent on the previous month, in April by 0.7 per cent and in March by 0.4 per cent.

Oliver Blake, managing director of Your Move and Reeds Rains Estate Agents, said the slowing of the month on month declines could be a reason for optimism.

He said: "The overall month on month decline has slowed to its lowest since February and in London there was modest house price growth for the first time since January.”

Greater London, the only region to have seen growth accelerate, posted an average monthly change of 0.2 per cent with an average house price of £634,092.

Annually, the picture looked a little rosier, with the average house price in England and Wales growing by 2.1 per cent between June 2017 and June 2018 and in London by 2.8 per cent.

Thais meant the average house in England and Wales in June was worth £303,960 – up more than £6,000 on last June.

The index noted that the West Midlands had seen particularly strong growth, up 3.2 per cent on an annual basis, with the North East also witnessing steady growth of 3.7 per cent over a 12-month period.

Jazz Jhumat, a financial adviser at Danestone Mortgage & Financial Services, said she was not surprised to see the West Midlands and the North East witnessing such strong growth as she has seen strong interest in both regions from her clients.

She said: “We have seen more buy to let developments in the North West regions, particularly in Liverpool, where a recent survey suggested that the city was yielding the best return for buy to let.

“The West Midlands has seen strong growth as the property price bracket is still reasonably affordable, but the region still has considerable potential for capital growth. The economy there is doing very well overall, although there are subtle differences within the region.”