House prices fall for fourth consecutive quarter

Suburbian UK houses

New data has revealed that for the fourth consecutive quarter, there has been a fall in house prices.

The Halifax house price index indicated a 0.2 percent drop over the past three months, resulting in the fourth consecutive quarterly fall for the first time since November 2012.

According to the figures, there was a 0.4 percent increase between June and July and the average house price in July was £219,266.

Whilst house prices might have fallen, Halifax believes that they will continue to benefit from ongoing low levels of new property being built, as demand continues to outweigh supply.

Russell Galley, managing director at Halifax Community Bank, said:

The rise in the employment level by 175,000 in the three months to May helped push the unemployment rate down to 4.5 per cent, the lowest since June 1975.

"However, this improvement in the jobs market has not, as yet, boosted wage growth, resulting in earnings rising at a slower rate than consumer prices. This squeeze on spending power, together with the impact on property transactions of the stamp duty changes in 2016 now being realised, along with affordability concerns, appear to have contributed to weaker housing demand.

Andrew Turner, chief executive at Commercial Trust, commented:

The fall in house prices cannot be seen as a big shock in the present economic climate. Affordability remains an important factor as people are constrained by the effects of inflation and slow growth in wages.

“With less spending power in their pockets, people are less inclined to buy property at present. However, there remains an enormous unfulfilled need for more housing within the UK and this factor will sustain property prices and rental rates over the coming months.

This information should not be interpreted as financial advice. Mortgage and loan rates are subject to change.

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