[DEBATE] : UK - House prices down by 0.4%
Riaz K Tayob
riazt at iafrica.com
Tue Jan 29 15:10:09 GMT 2008
House prices down by 0.4%
* Hilary Osborne
This article was first published on guardian.co.uk on Tuesday January 29
2008. It was last updated at 14:06 on January 29 2008.
House prices in England and Wales fell by 0.4% in December, the Land
Registry said today - the first time in two years it has reported a
negative monthly change.
The fall, which follows a 0.6% rise in prices in November, is the first
recorded by the Land Registry since August 2005, and takes the annual
rate of inflation down to 6.7% from 8.1% the previous month.
In December, the average price of a home in England and Wales fell to
£184,469, down from £186,009 in November.
Although year-on-year growth remained positive, the Land Registry said
the fall was "evidence of a downward trend in house prices" and "a clear
indication of a weakening market".
Figures for the number of properties changing hands in the period from
July to October showed a marked decrease from the previous year, adding
to the picture of a cooling market.
The Land Registry also said the number of sales in that period averaged
103,374 a month, down from 117,086 a month in the same period of the
The figures add to the signs of the downward trend in prices that have
already emerged in data from mortgage lenders, surveyors and estate agents.
The Land Registry said prices were down in three out of 10 regions in
England and Wales, with the east Midlands seeing the biggest
month-on-month drop as 3.3% was knocked off average prices in the region.
In London, prices continued their upward trend rising to an average of
£354,625, although monthly growth was down from 1.1% in November to a
more modest 0.6%.
However, strong growth in the capital in the early months of 2007
sustained the annual rate of price inflation, so that in December it
weighed in at 14.3% - more than double the figure for England and Wales
as a whole.
Despite price falls, the number of homes in England and Wales sold for
more than £1m rose by 31% between October 2006 and October 2007 to 671 -
the equivalent of almost 22 a day.
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