Land Registry: UK house prices have fallen 0.2 per cent since August

 
Billy Ehrenberg
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House prices fell 0.2 per cent in August (Source: Getty)
UK house prices have fallen since August, data published by the Land Registry today showed, offering further evidence of a cooling market.
The Land Registry, which uses price paid data as opposed to asking prices, said prices have fallen 0.2 per cent since August, despite rising 7.2 per cent in the year to September.
This follows two months of growth - 1.1 per cent month-on-month in August and 2.0 per cent in July – but still shows a cooling market.
The average price of a house in England and Wales is now £177,299, compared with a peak of £181,324 in November 2007.
As always, there were regional differences. London, the fastest growing region over the last year, actually experienced negative growth this month. The fastest-growing region was the East at 1.4 per cent.

It is worth noting the Land Registry’s data lags other market indicators because it uses completed transactions.
Here is how the average prices look by region:

Howard Archer of IHS Global Insight said this was further evidence that the market is slowing.
The bulk of the evidence suggests that housing market activity and buyer interest has clearly moderated from the peak levels seen earlier this year.
In particular, the British Bankers Association has reported that mortgage approvals for house purchases fell to a 14-month low of 39,271 in September from 41,361 in August,42,594 in July and 43,126 in June. Mortgage approvals in September were down by 19.0 per cent from January’s 76-month high of 48,462.
However, the fact that mortgage approvals currently remain markedly below their January peak levels - and are seemingly currently falling - after lenders have now likely got to grips with the new mortgage regulations points to an underlying moderation in housing market activity.
The market is expected to have a slower year in 2015 as the Bank of England prepares to raise interest rates.
Archer says that as the recovery continues consumer confidence is likely to act as a counterweight.
...buyer interest in houses is unlikely to fall away and appreciable support is likely to come from elevated consumer confidence, markedly rising employment, and still low mortgage interest rates (especially as they now look unlikely to rise before mid-2015).

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