Arrears in prime mortgages are on the up, while house prices stabilise

ARREARS in residential prime mortgage backed securities were on the up in the first quarter, Moody&rsquo;s latest report showed yesterday. <br /><br />The data showed that arrears within prime securities have gone up in each quarter since 2007. In the first three months of 2009, 1.66 per cent of current balance of securitised mortgages were in arrears, up from 1.47 per cent in the previous quarter.<br /><br />Meanwhile, hopes that the property market may be stabilising were bolstered yesterday after the Land Registry reported in May values dropped by the smallest amount in nearly a year.<br /><br />The average home in England and Wales lost just 0.3 per cent of its value during the month to &pound;152,898, showing that the speed of decline had been &ldquo;fairly static&rdquo; over the past two months after a two per cent decline in February.<br /><br />However, property values were still 16.2 per cent below those in April last year, the figures showed.<br /><br />In London, prices rose by 1.4 per cent to an average of &pound;302,411, while the East Midlands, which had seen prices fall in April, also saw a 1.2 per cent increase. <br /><br />Homes in the region changed hands for an average of &pound;122,532.<br /><br />House prices remained unchanged in May, the report said, further highlighting the stabilisation of house prices.<br /><br />Meanwhile, the latest house price data from Nationwide showed a bounce of 1.2 per cent in May, the single highest one-month improvement since late 2006.