House price recovery continues but will soon begin to slow, says Halifax

BRITISH house prices rose 1.2 per cent in October, leaving the annual decline at its smallest in one-and-a-half years as a lack of supply and higher demand buoyed prices, mortgage lender Halifax said yesterday.<br /><br />House prices were 1.5 per cent down in October compared with a year ago, the smallest annual fall since March 2008. Halifax said it expected the annual price change to turn positive in the coming months.<br /><br />In the three months to October compared with a year ago, prices were 4.7 per cent lower &ndash; the smallest fall on that measure since May 2008 -- leaving the average price of a home at &pound;165,528.<br /><br />The Halifax data showed a stronger monthly increase than rival mortgage lender Nationwide, which said prices rose 0.4 per cent last month. However, house prices on the Nationwide measure have now risen for six consecutive months compared to only four on Halifax&rsquo;s gauge.<br /><br />And Halifax said such strong house price growth was unlikely to be sustained as there were signs that people were becoming more willing to put their homes up for sale.