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UK house prices tick up 0.5%

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A marginal rise in prices kept annual price inflation below 1% for the 12th month running
UK house prices tick up 0.5%

The average house price in the UK in November was £215,734, according to Nationwide, 0.5% higher than in October, and 0.8% higher than in November last year.

That’s now 12 months in a row where annual property price inflation has failed to hit 1%.

Robert Gardner, Nationwide’s chief economist, said: “Indicators of UK economic activity have been fairly volatile in recent quarters, but the underlying pace of growth appears to have slowed as a result of weaker global growth and an intensification of Brexit uncertainty.”

Election connection

With the UK general election in a few week’s time, Nationwide analysed house price movements in the months around previous elections, and also the 2016 EU referendum.

Gardner said: “It appears that housing market trends have not traditionally been impacted around the time of general elections. Rightly or wrongly, for most home buyers, elections are not foremost in their minds while buying or selling their home.”

Jonathan Samuels, CEO of the property lender, Octane Capital, disagreed, suggesting that “in the General Election, the property market is fast approaching its most radical juncture for decades”.

He added: “While broader economic trends have dominated house price movements around elections in the past, this General Election has a whole new level of significance and could have a material impact on price trends in 2020 and beyond.

“A strong Conservative majority has the potential to reignite the market whereas a Corbyn-led coalition could see further atrophy and decline.”

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