House prices turn upwards in London yet continue to slump in rest of the UK

Julian Harris
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LONDON is the first UK region to register a rise in house prices for eight months, the Hometrack monthly national housing survey announced today.

While prices across the UK fell by 0.1 per cent in March, in the capital they rose by 0.2 per cent.

The upturn was driven by a 25 per cent increase in demand, over a two-month period, and tightening supply, the report said.

“Central London saw some of the highest price rises with a one per cent increase over the month,” said Hometrack’s Richard Donnell.

However, outside London, Hometrack’s research mirrored other recent surveys, with prices remaining under downward pressure.

All other regions recorded price falls in March, except for the south west, where prices stagnated.

The recent Budget from chancellor George Osborne will fail to revive the housing market, the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) said today.

“The new FirstBuy scheme is less generous than the one it replaces, and has the capacity to help only around one per cent of first-time buyers in a ‘normal’ year of activity,” the CML said.

“However, other announcements by the chancellor, albeit of a more technical nature, could help improve mortgage funding in the long run,” it conceded.