How we calculate House Price Watch
A list of data we monitor and analyse so you don’t have to.
Why did we create House Price Watch?
Every month mortgage lenders, property professionals or government publish data on what is happening in the housing market. Often their views contradict each other – due to the way they calculate their estimates.
Who reports on what?
- Land Registry –England and Wales, the official record of all sales. By far the most comprehensive and accurate index. Land Registry reports both national and regional changes to house prices. Released four weeks after month is complete.
- LSL Property Services – Uses data from the Land Registry, and attempts to cover every property transaction for the month, including cash buyers. Published monthly.
- Halifax House Price Index – UK wide. The largest mortgage lender (part of the Lloyds Banking Group), this index assesses data from 20% of the UK mortgage market and is based on the banks valuation of customers’ homes. Published monthly.
- Nationwide House Price Index – UK wide. Based on nationwide mortgages sold each month. Prices come from their valuation at the point when the mortgage is approved. Published monthly.
- HomeTrack – Modified their methodology in October 2014. Now based upon recorded sales prices from the Land Registry ‘Price Paid’ data set and equivalent data from the Registers of Scotland. The price paid data is supplemented by mortgage valuation data. The index tracks house prices in the top 20 UK cities. Published monthly.
- Rightmove – England and Wales. The property listings website compiles average prices from homes added to their site over the last month. However, remember the listing price is generally higher than the price achieved. They claim that 90% of all homes on the market are on their site. Rightmove reports both national and regional changes to house prices. Published monthly.
- Office for National Statistics (ONS) – The Government’s official house price report. Covers about 60% of UK house sales that have a mortgage. Data provided by the Council of Mortgage Lenders. Released 6 weeks after month is complete (not included in our reports because of lag in availability of data).
- Royal Institution for Chartered Surveyors (RICS) – UK wide. Each month 250 experienced members are asked how they feel prices are doing in their area. Despite being based on opinion, tends to produce results that are proven to be historically reliable. Only one consulted by the Bank of England prior to their monthly rate-setting meeting (not included in our reports because of lag in availability of data).
How is our House Price Watch Index calculated?
- The index of indices, the House Price Watch Index is an average of the monthly and annual house price indices from Land Registry, Nationwide, Halifax, LSL Property Services.
- We use Land Registry regional data to track average monthly price changes in each region.
- While we report Rightmove’s monthly house price changes, Rightmove data is not included in either our national or regional average as the basis for its index is asking prices — a different and more volatile measure than other indices.
- Because of timeliness we do not currently include ONS or RICS data in our index.
- Because Hometrack no longer report a national average, it is not included in our index.
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