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UK asking prices increased by 0.2% in August, the eighth month in a row that they have moved upwards, the latest index shows. But asking price growth is slowing, especially in London and overall the average annual appreciation fell 0.3% to 9%, according to the data from Home.co.uk. But these headline figures mask some variation. London asking prices dipped under the weight of increased supply, ending a 20 month rally and average prices were unchanged in Scotland and the North West. Prices rose in all other English regions and Wales. Even within London there is considerable variation and overall the supply of property in the city is up 33% compared with August last year. Stratford tops the London property hotspot league, table with home prices leaping 45% over the last 12 months. Overall, the UK property market is cooling. The average asking price for a UK home has risen only 0.2% over the last month and 0.8% over the last three months. Correspondingly, London prices slipped 0.1% over the last month, yet have risen 9.8% over the last six months. The firm says that tightening mortgage credit in the wake of mortgage regulation, coupled with increased supply, has served to quench further growth in London home prices for the time being. ‘Home price inflation still persists outside of London but at an attenuated pace. Moreover, the surge in supply that has halted London price rises has not yet spread to adjacent regions,’ said Doug Shephard, director of Home.co.uk. The Asking Price Index also shows that certain regional property markets continue to be strong performers. East Anglia, the East Midlands, the South East and South West all show six month price rises of over 4%. Others, however, are showing much weaker price growth. Home prices in the North East are still falling behind inflation, rising only 1.2% over the last six months and by only 0.6% over the last year. Shephard also pointed out that across the UK, supply remains historically tight, showing a rise of only 3% on the already record low levels observed 12 months ago. Supply of properties entering the market fell the most in East Anglia, down 6% over the last 12 months. ‘Looking back further to 2007, we can see that it is actually the Greater London market that has contracted the most, by 65% over the last seven years, despite a recent surge in property entering the market,’ he explained. Of the regions, the East Anglia and South East property markets have contracted the most, down 63% and 62% respectively. Overall, the mainland UK property marketplace offers 55% less choice to buyers today than it did in 2007. Marketing times are beginning to rise across all regions and London, as is seasonally expected. However, further analysis across the regions reveals real improvement in every region compared to this month last year, although the relative pace of the regions remains highly diverse. Continue reading →
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