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House price growth ‘slowest since 2012’

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18/12/2019
The average price of a house in the UK rose by 0.7 per cent to £233,000 in the 12 months to October, the lowest level of annual growth since 2012.

According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), this is down from the 1.3 per cent increase seen last month. On a monthly basis, the average price of a house fell by 0.7 per cent in October. 

On a regional basis, the lowest annual growth was in London, where prices fell by 1.6 per cent, followed by the North East, where prices fell by 1.1 per cent over the year. 

Increases across the UK 

England saw a nominal 0.5 per cent increase in the average price of a house to £249,000. This was mainly driven by growth in Yorkshire and The Humber which saw house prices rise 3.2 per cent annually. 

In Wales, house prices grew 3.3 per cent annually to £166,000 and Scotland saw a 1.4 per cent rise to an average of £154,000. 

House prices in Northern Ireland increased by four per cent to £140,000. 

Slow growth expected 

Mike Scott, chief property analyst at Yopa, said the slowing level of growth was expected, noting that these completions were based on deals agreed in the summer, when the market had suffered a slowdown.

“We expect that the rate of increase will recover in future releases, though with another brief slowdown in the figures during the first quarter of next year as the political uncertainty of October and November works its way into this report.” 

He added: “For the year as a whole, we expect a return to slow but steady house price growth, roughly in line with wage increases and general inflation.” 

First-time buyer difficulties

Dilpreet Bhagrath, mortgage adviser at Trussle, said that the government needs to do more to help first-time buyers.

She said: “Prices are rising and many first-time buyers need a boost to help get onto the property ladder.” 

Steve Seal, managing director at Bluestone Mortgages, added: “Rising house prices are good for overall market optimism but bad for buyers. For those borrowers locked out of the mainstream mortgage market, getting on the ladder is not an easy thing to do.  

“We need to ensure that as many borrowers as possible are able to access credit to buy a home.” 

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