Mar 2014 House Price Watch Report
This month's House Price Watch indicates house prices are up on average 0.8% in the past month and up on average 6.3% in the past year
Market activity steps up a gear: buyer & seller numbers up sharply
- Reports indicate property transactions are up significantly this month; to their highest level since January 2007 (transactions are estimated to be up 67% on January 2013 according to LSL Acadata estimates for January 2014 of 73,000 compared to January 2013 Land Registry levels of 43,791).
- A key reason for the rise in transactions is seen to be increased activity by first-time buyers (triggered by more competitive products and an easing of availability of higher loan to value mortgages). According to Nov 2013 CML data, the number of loans to first-time buyers are up 24% year on year.
- First-time buyers are seen to help drive overall activity in the housing market: According to Nov 2013 CML data, the number of home movers taking out loans increased by 15% compared to the previous year.
- Buyer numbers registered a strong increase in February (up 17% according to Hometrack data) with continued news of improving market conditions and low mortgage rates expected to hold in the near term.
- There are strong signs of growing seller sentiment with a big jump in new seller listings in the past month (up 11% in Feb according to Hometrack data); representing the highest monthly increase for almost seven years.
- Despite the significant boost in property coming onto the market, this has been exceeded by demand for properties resulting in rising house prices. This trend is expected to continue until we see a sustained increase in supply at least for as long as mortgage rates remain low. Rightmove suggest this is an early indicator that transaction volumes in 2014 will be significantly higher than in 2013.
Regional Summary: London , South East and North East highest monthly rise in house prices
London’s house prices up 1.6% on average in the past month and 10.9% this year – the average house price exceeds £485,000. The South East also had sharp rises up 1.55% in the past month and 6.4% this year.
Most areas had a rise in property prices in the past month with the exception of Yorkshire & Humberside and the North West.
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