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Lowest annual rise in house prices for four years

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Lowest annual rise in house prices for four years

UK house prices increased by 2.4% year-on-year in the second quarter of 2017, a drop from the 3.6% recorded in the first three months of the 2017, according to Halifax.

The lender noted that the average UK property price is now £222,911, up £5,320 in cash terms since a year ago. This is a slowdown from the peak seen in early 2016, and marks the slowest annual growth in house prices since the start of 2013.

The annual rise in prices in London recorded in the second quarter of the year was even smaller, at just 0.8%, compared to 13.7% this time last year.

And in Scotland prices have fallen 4.2% since the same period 12 months ago.

Riding high

At the other end of the scale, the East Midlands was a notable outperformer, with prices in quarter two up 9.7% year-on-year.

But when you look at the figures over the last 10 years, London is still way out in front, with house price inflation at a massive 42.8%. The South East (30%) and East Anglia (24.3%) complete the top three.

At the bottom of the 10-year table, the standard house price in Northern Ireland (-42.2%) is still well below its pre-financial crisis peak. Three other regions have also recorded a drop in the standard house price over 10 years – the North of England (-9.7%), Scotland (-6.2%) and Wales (-0.6%).

Tim Moore, senior economist at IHS Markit, said: “There are now signs that weakness in the capital has started to extend to commuter areas beyond the M25, with property prices across the wider South East increasing at the slowest annual price since the end of 2012.

“London’s soft patch has clearly magnified the slowdown in UK house price inflation since 2016, but this weaker trend is not exclusive to the capital.

“A generally cooling UK housing market appears to have emerged so far in 2017, driven by affordability constraints, pressures on household finances, greater caution among buyers and the fiscal squeeze on buy-to-let.”

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