Slowdown in UK House Prices

UK house prices have risen an average of 4.1 per cent in the year to March 2017, continuing the general slowdown in annual growth rate.

The data, which came from the Office for National Statistics House Price Index, found a slowdown from 5.6 per cent in the year to February 2017. The main contribution to the UK’s house price growth came from from England. House prices in England were up 4.4 per cent in the year until March 2017, boosting the average price in England to £233,000. Wales followed closely behind, with house prices up 4.3 per cent over the last year. This took the average house price in the country to £148,000.

In Scotland, the slowdown in average price increase also notable, with property rising at just 0.7 per cent. This took house prices to stand at £137,000. The average price in Northern Ireland reached £124,000, an increase of 4.3 per cent over the year to March 2017.

Regionally, London continues to see the strongest average house price at £472,000, followed by the South East and the East of England, which stand at £312,000 and £277,000 respectively. The North East has the lowest average at £122,000.

The highest annual growth was found in the East of England and the East Midlands, up 6.7 per cent in the year to March 2017. This was followed by the West Midlands at 6.5 per cent. The lowest annual growth was again in the North East, with prices down 0.4 per cent year on year.

On a seasonally adjusted basis, the North West showed the highest monthly growth with prices up by 0.7 per cent over the month to March 2017.

The local authority that saw the strongest annual growth in the year to March 2017 was the Orkney Islands, with prices up 15.3 per cent to stand at £144,000. Unsurprisingly, the most expensive borough to live in was Kensington and Chelsea, where the cost of an average house was £1.4 million.

CEO and Co-Founder of buy to let specialist Landbay, John Goodall, said: ‘While it may look as though house price growth is beginning to slow down, affordability remains a key concern for many aspiring homeowners struggling to get a foot on the ladder. Furthermore, rising inflation and recent warnings from the Bank of England that a year of falling wages lies ahead means we’re unlikely to see any immediate relief. Now more than ever, the private rented sector will be relied upon to support those unwilling or unable to buy a house outright. As the General Election draws closer, we hope to see some ironclad commitments on house building from policy makers. Encouraging institutional investment in large scale developments, specifically designed to rent rather than buy, will help to control house price growth while also improving living standards for those relying on a well-served buy-to-let market.’

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