UK house prices fall for first time in 2014

Sarah Spickernell
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House prices across the UK have fallen for the first time this year, according to the Rightmove House Price Index.
It showed that the average advertised cost for a home fell from £272,275 in June to £270,159 in July, marking a 0.8 per cent decrease.
This meant that, while the growth rate was 7.7 per cent in the 12 months to June, it declined to 6.5 per cent in the 12 months to July.
Areas experiencing the biggest drops were the East Midlands and the North, each of which went down by 1.9 per cent.
Greater London was also affected, dropping by 0.4 per cent. This was partly because of the affordability ceiling hit by properties in the capital.
Such a seasonal dip in house prices is not unexpected for a traditionally quiet time of year, according to the property portal.
It also says that distraction caused by the World Cup may have combined with stricter lending rules and the prospect of a rise in interest rates to bring down asking prices.
“A price fall in July is not unexpected as prospective buyers turn their attention to the summer holidays, not the mention the distraction of an engaging World Cup,” said Miles Shipstone, analyst at Rightmove.
“Buyer confidence may also have taken a knock with suggestions that mortgages are becoming harder to get, and repayments may get more costly sooner than originally anticipated, should the rumours of an interest rate rise before the next election come true.”

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