potinsnews.com March 25, 2017

House prices down 0.9% in January

08 February 2017, 12:42 | Chelsea Hernandez

House price growth has remained relatively robust since the Brexit vote Simon Cameron

House price growth has remained relatively robust since the Brexit vote Simon Cameron

According to the latest Halifax House Price Index, house prices fell 0.9% in January after jumping 1.6% in in December. Compared with January previous year, house prices grew by 5.7%.

The average United Kingdom home is now worth £220,260. These factors are unlikely to change materially during 2017, ' he explained.

Martin Ellis, Halifax housing economist, said: "Weaker economic growth and increasing pressure on spending power, along with affordability constraints, are expected to dampen housing demand, resulting in some downward pressure on annual house price growth during the year".

EMoov chief executive Russell Quirk says the nation should avoid scaremongering interpretations of the drop.

Howard Archer, chief economist at IHS Global Insight, said: "While latest data points to a pick-up in housing market activity from August's low, it is still hardly racing ahead".

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House price growth has remained relatively robust since the Brexit vote as ultra-low mortgage rates, low unemployment, a shortage of housing stock and government policies such as the Help to Buy equity loan scheme have helped to support demand.

United Kingdom home prices declined at the start of the year, underscoring predictions for a slowdown in 2017, according to Halifax. "However, a shortage of supply is likely to put a hard floor under prices".

Jonathan Hopper, managing director of Garrington Property Finders, also believes that the market is robust and pointed out that the Bank of England has reported the highest number of mortgage approvals since last March's stamp duty stampede. However his firm has found that astute buyers are able to ask for and win big discounts. "Weakening consumer fundamentals, likely mounting caution over making major spending decisions and elevated house price-to-earnings ratios are likely to weigh down on house prices".

Tarlochan Garcha, CEO at peer-to-peer property lending platform, Kuflink, said: "Despite the housing market taking its foot off the accelerator, there is steady momentum".

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