Property News (Berkshire)
Wed 04 Feb 2015
Prices continue to rise, albeit steadily
ONS figures show climb of 10% in year to November
House prices increased by 10% in the year to November, according to the house prices index relseased by the Office of National Statistics.
It showed prices continue to increase strongly across the majority of the UK, with prices in London again showing the highest growth.
The index highlighted that property price annual inflation was 10.4% in England, 3.1% in Wales, 4.4% in Scotland and 11.7% in Northern Ireland.
The ONS said that as expected, annual house price increases in England were driven by an annual increase in the capital of 15.3% and to a lesser extent increases in the East (11.9%) and the South-east (10.8%).
Taking London and the South-east out of the equation, the rest of the UK's house prices increased by 7.1% in the 12 months to November 2014.
On a seasonally adjusted basis, average house prices increased by 0.2% between October and November 2014.
In November 2014, prices paid by first-time buyers were 11% higher on average than in November 2013.
For owner-occupiers (existing owners), prices increased by 9.5% for the same period.
Brian Murphy, head of lending at the Mortgage Advice Bureau (MAB), said: "A frantic start to 2014 drove the strong annual growth in the index.
"However, the rate of increase slowed significantly towards the end of last year and November's average house price was 1% below August's peak of 270,000.
"This slight slowing of activity will be especially welcomed by first-time buyers, who have also had their hopes lifted by stamp duty adjustments - benefiting those towards the bottom of the property ladder.
"Consumer demand in the market is expected to remain strong this year, although a slower rate of growth is likely as uncertainties around the general election and interest rates remain."
He added: "This is more good news for mortgage borrowers, who are already benefitting from historically low pricing and products such as Barclays' lowest ever 10 year fix, which can arm them against future rate rises."
Peter Rollings, chief executive of Marsh & Parsons said a double digit rise in values over recent months was still 'an impressive leap'.
"And after the exertions of the summer months, this is simply a period of natural recalibration, restoring a more sustainable pace of price inflation," he said.
"Growth is still ticking along the right direction, with a steadier 0.2 % climb in the month of November."