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Average house prices in England and Wales increased by almost £2,000 in august, the biggest monthly boost for a year, the latest index data to be published shows. They increased by £1,900 or 0.7% compared with July which takes the average prices of a home to its eighth peak this year at £282,816, according to the LSL index. Year on year average prices rose 4.1%, the data also shows and East Anglia has seen the highest regional rise due to a shortage of properties coming onto the market. However, sales are down, recording a monthly drop of 14% in August and are now behind 2013 levels. The north of England recorded the strongest sales activity with transactions up 3% year on year. Richard Sexton, director of e.surv chartered surveyors, pointed out that so far in 2015, monthly price rises have struggled to break above the 0.5%, so this latest rise marks a step up in pace. He believes that a shortfall of summer sellers puts buyers in hot contention for properties. He also pointed out that compared to last year, average property prices have climbed £11,225 and all 10 regions of England and Wales are showing annual increases in house prices. Indeed, the last region to experience a year on year fall in property values was Wales in July 2013. He is not too worried about the dip in sales.'Home sales across England and Wales reached 76,700 in August, down 14% on July levels. This should be taken with a pinch a salt as July was an exceptionally strong month for transactions, and activity in August can be seen as balancing this out,' said Sexton. 'But August is also the first time in 2015 to date that property sales have fallen below their equivalent month in 2013. In the three months to July 2015, property sales have dropped 3% year on year. Across all of England and Wales, the North is the only region where activity has increased over the period, with home sales up 3% during May to July 2015 compared to the same three months in 2014,' he explained. The largest fall in activity has been in East Anglia, with total property sales down 9%, and sales of flats 15% lower year on year from May to July. At the same time, this region has experienced the highest house price growth of any region, at 5.9% in July 2015. 'This suggests it’s not demand that is the problem, but supply. The lack of properties coming onto the market here is intensifying competition and heating up price rises, above temperatures we’re seeing elsewhere, said Sexton. 'The nationwide mismatch between sellers putting homes up for sale and buyer demand should warm up measures of growth for the autumn. August represented the twelfth month in succession that the annual rate of growth declined, down steadily from 11.1% in August 2014, to 4.1% last… Continue reading →
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