House prices rise by 6.7% over past year

Source: www.guardian.co.uk
Published: 28 September 2010
By: Mary King

Land Registry figures show house prices increased by 0.3% in August, a slight reduction on the 0.4% rise seen in July.

House prices in England and Wales increased by 6.7% over the past year taking the average price to £167,423, according to latest figures from the Land Registry.

All regions in England and Wales experienced increases in their average property values over the past 12 months, with London experiencing the highest yearly price rise of 11.4%, taking the average value to £345,734. The lowest annual rise took place in the north-east with an increase of 1.6%.

Prices rose by an average of 0.3% in August, the figues showed – a slight reduction on the 0.4% rise seen in July. The West Midlands experienced the greatest monthly rise with an increase of 1.2%, while Yorkshire and the Humber experienced the most significant monthly price fall with a drop of 1.4%.

The most up-to-date figures show that in June the number of completed house sales in England and Wales rose by 9% to 59,390 from 54,710 in the same month last year. But sales of expensive properties rocketed, with the number of £1m-plus homes sold in England and Wales increasing by 81% from 331 to 599.

The Land Registry figures are in stark contrast to property information company Hometrack's latest monthly snapshot and figures from the British Bankers' Association (BBA). Earlier this week Hometrack announced that flagging demand had left house prices falling in every region of England and Wales for the first time since the spring of 2009.

Hometrack said the cost of a home had dropped by 0.4% in September – the third monthly decline in a row – and that the falls in prices had been heaviest in the southern regions of England where homes are the most expensive.

Last week, the BBA said mortgage lending fell in August, with the lowest number of new mortgages offered this year. It said there were 31,767 mortgages advanced for purchases during the month, down on July's 34,219 and a 16-month low.