New data from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) details the performance of house prices in the year to August 2017 and also breaks down regional changes in house prices from month to month.
The ONS recently revealed that across the 12 months leading up to August of this year, UK house prices have risen by 5% on average, raising the average value of a home to £225,956.
When looking specifically at England, the latest index showed that the country performed slightly above the average in comparison to the rest of the UK, with a 5.3% rise year on year and 0.7% rise in property prices month on month, with an average house price of £243,520. Wales and Scotland also saw an annual increase, with a rise of 3.4% and 3.9% respectively.
Comparing individual cities showed that Edinburgh was at the top of the price rise table, boasting a 10.4% annual increase, taking the average value of a home to £223,283. Focusing on England, it was the region of the North West that saw the largest increase, with annual growth of 6.5% and huge month to month increase of 2.3%. What may be surprising to some is that London, the usual frontrunner for house price comparisons, actually recorded growth below the national average at 2.6%.
While there has been plenty of talk recently of a slump in the property market, one surprising statistic from the latex ONS index was that for properties valued at £40,000 or more, the number of sales has actually risen by 6.6% in comparison to 12 months prior.
The numerous reports of increases across the UK is great news for homeowners but does create a challenge for prospective buyers. Director of the Legal & General Mortgage Club, Jeremy Duncombe said that “Annual prices are consistently rising as more buyers chase fewer properties. As speculation around the Autumn Budget begins to build up, we hope there will be a genuine answer to boost supply that gives everyone a realistic the chance to own a home”
This opinion was reiterated by John Goodall, Buy to let specialist at Landbay, who feels that while there are opportunities out there for first-time buyers to take there first step on the property ladder, the government must do everything it can to ease the current pressure of demand for housing.
Goodall stated, “Although record-low mortgage rates will be helping those who have already stumped up a deposit, escalating house prices will come as yet another blow to aspiring homeowners looking to get their foot on the housing ladder.”
“It is essential that the government doesn’t lose focus on addressing the housing crisis and makes good on its promise to build the thousands of new, affordable homes that people desperately need.”