Property Reporter: February Market Trend Data from Land Registry
Thu 28 Mar 2013
The February data from Land Registry's House Price Index shows an annual price increase of 1.0 per cent which takes the average property value in England and Wales to 162,606. February house prices up 0.2 per cent since January: average house price in England and Wales now 162,606. 1,193 repossessions in England and Wales during December 2012. South East tops the table of regional applications with 241,086 in February. Over 49,300 residential properties in England and Wales lodged for registration in February ranging from 8,000 to 20.4 million. Repossession volumes decreased by 26 per cent in December 2012 to 1,193 compared with 1,612 in December 2011.
The region in England and Wales which experienced the greatest increase in its average property value over the last 12 months is London with a movement of 6.3 per cent. Wales experienced the greatest monthly rise with a movement of 3.6 per cent. The region with the greatest annual price fall is Yorkshire & The Humber with a decrease of 0.9 per cent The South West saw the most significant monthly price fall with a decrease of 0.8 per cent.
The most up-to-date figures available show that during December 2012, the number of completed house sales in England and Wales decreased by 15 per cent to 53,860 compared with 63,600 in December 2011. The number of properties sold in England and Wales for over 1 million in December 2012 increased by 19 per cent to 598 from 501 in December 2011. The only region to see an increase in repossessions was London with an increase of 3 per cent (December 2012 compared with December 2011).
Peter Rollings, CEO Marsh & Parsons, comments: "The relative shortage of stock sees house prices in the capital setting new records according to Nationwide. Demand is coming from both home and abroad and is set to continue with the much anticipated return to more seasonable Spring-like weather. The measures in the budget - while unlikely to be felt until next year when the mortgage guarantee for second hand homes comes into force in January - will also provide a stimulus to get the housing market moving at a more rapid pace.
This is essential as it will enable people to move onto the ladder and for those existing owners to move up. This mobility will bring more homes onto the market and free the log jam at the lower end. But for now London house prices are immune to the ramifications of what's happening in Cyprus and the wider Eurozone.There is a seemingly insatiable demand for the best parts of London (Kensington and Chelsea up 12%, Hammersmith and Fulham 13.3% according to land Registry) which demonstrates that London property is regarded as a very safe haven."
Peter Williams, Executive Director of IMLA, comments:
"A 1% annual increase in the average house price to 162,606 is relatively modest, but the real question following last week's Budget announcements is whether we'll be saying the same next year? There was already a consensus among intermediary lenders at the turn of the year that the average price may pass 164,000 by the summer. With Help to Buy's equity loan scheme starting next week, and the mortgage guarantee programme on the horizon, the ingredients are certainly there to push house prices higher still.
This is why it is so important for Help to Buy to kickstart house-building activity. As lenders, helping borrowers to access higher loan-to-value deals will be of limited use if they find themselves faced with a situation where house prices - and therefore deposits - are inflated artificially.Like the Funding for Lending Scheme, Help to Buy is a policy with a limited lifespan, whereas the need to increase the supply of property in the market is a long-term challenge that will become more pressing as time passes."