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House prices on hold in August

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As the Brexit deadline looms, the UK housing market is holding steady, with minimal movement in property prices
House prices on hold in August

UK property prices are an average £233,541, according to Halifax, which noted a minimal rise of just 0.3% in September.

This represents an increase of just 0.1% over the last quarter and annual house price inflation of 1.8%.

The lender’s long-running house price index has been updated this month with a new methodology, which it said “reflects changes to the structure of the housing market and uses best practice in house price determination”.

Russell Galley, managing director of Halifax, said: “There was no real shift in house prices in August as the average property value grew by just 0.3% month on month. This further extends the predominantly flat trend we’ve seen over the last six months, with the average house price having barely changed since March.

“Although the housing market will undoubtedly be influenced by events in the wider economy, it continues to show a degree of resilience for the time being. We should also not lose sight of the fact that the single biggest driver of both prices and activity over the longer-term remains the dearth of available properties to meet demand from buyers.”

Lucy Pendleton, founder director of estate agent James Pendleton, added that the new methodology had brought the index closer in line with other house price indicators:

“This index from Halifax has plummeted from some extraordinary annual growth figures seen earlier this year, and somehow always seemed out of kilter with other indices,” she said.

“It is still a nose and perhaps one shoulder ahead of the UK’s other meters of property price progress but has slowly fallen more into line with the rest. All now trail inflation as Brexit has slammed the door on the property market’s fingers, leaving a crack through which only modest price growth can be achieved.”

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