House prices on the rise
House prices in England enjoyed growth in November edging up by 0.3% to an average of £214.044. The latest Nationwide Property Index shows that property prices are 1.9% above what they were in the same month a year ago.
The November Index examined housing supply in England during the last ten years, showing that in a decade housing supply has risen by 8.5%, growing by 1.9 million.
The highest level of growth has been witnessed in London, the South West and the East of England.
Robert Gardner, Nationwide’s chief economist, spoke of the future of housing in England and how growth trends will be dependent on broader economic conditions.
“In the near term, the squeeze on household budgets and the uncertain economic outlook is likely to continue to dampen demand, even though borrowing costs remain low and the unemployment rate is near 40-year lows,” Gardner commented.
Nationwide’s chief economist added how activity is likely to increase in the forthcoming months and how interest rates are expected to stay low.
“If the uncertainty lifts in the months ahead and employment continues to rise, there is scope for activity to pick-up through next year. The squeeze on household incomes is already moderating and policymakers have signalled that, if the economy performs as they expect, interest rates are only expected to rise at a modest pace and to a limited extent in the years ahead,” Gardner added.
November’s house price growth comes on the back of encouraging mortgage approval rates and optimistic property transaction figures, which shows, as former RICS Chairman, Jeremy Leaf notes:
“Realistic buyers and sellers are taking advantage of very low mortgage rates and shrugging off Brexit concerns.”
“Looking forward, we don’t expect any major changes in the period leading up to Christmas unless our departure from the EU is finalised more clearly one way or the other, but there is no doubt we are finding there is considerable pent-up demand awaiting more settled times,” Leaf added.
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