House prices dip

House prices fell by 0.9 per cent in November, mortgage lender Halifax said on Tuesday, though it said it expected the housing market to hold steady in the coming months.

House prices fell by one per cent in the three months to November compared with a year ago, weaker than the 0.7 per cent decline forecast by analysts, but the slowest pace of decline in a year.

November's decline in prices almost completely reversed October's 1.2 per cent rise, and Halifax said the figures highlighted the mixed pattern of house prices this year.

The mortgage lender said house prices had remained "remarkably stable" this year despite deteriorating economic conditions. The average price of a home stood at 161,731 pounds.

"The UK average price now is only marginally lower than at the end of 2010. In addition, activity has recently shown a few signs of strengthening a little," said Halifax housing economist Martin Ellis.

"We expect the market to remain broadly unchanged in terms of both prices and sales over the coming few months as demand and supply conditions alter little."