• Claudine Montano
  • 03/7/24

Nationwide building society's latest house price index shows a 1.2% increase in average house prices, the first positive record since January 2023. The average house price across the UK rose by 0.7% in February, reaching £260,420. The fall in mortgage rates at the start of 2024 has prompted an increase in market activity, with a noticeable increase in mortgage applications and new buyer enquiries. However, the short-term outlook remains unclear due to ongoing uncertainty about the future path of interest rates. Mortgage rates have started to rise again, with the last five-year fixed mortgage rate at under 4% pulled from the market on 22 February. This is supporting buyer and seller confidence and boosting market activity.

House price inflation has decreased by 0.5% year-on-year in January, according to property portal Zoopla. However, buyer demand, sales agreed, and the number of properties on the market are higher than in January 2023. The North East region and London have led the rebound in sales, with numbers up 17% and 16%, respectively. Zoopla describes a 'three-speed' housing market, split between southern England, London, and the rest of the UK. Prices continue to fall the most where average house prices are highest, such as London and the south of England, likely due to affordability constraints as mortgage rates have climbed over the past year. London is the most expensive market, with an average house price of £534,000, but affordability is starting to improve due to weak house price inflation in recent years. Scottish house prices remain positive, rising 2.2% annually.

Property portal Rightmove reports that asking prices for homes in February are 0.9% higher than in January, with an average of £362,839. This marks the first time annual prices have been in positive territory after six consecutive months of falls. The market is expected to be a healthy start to 2024, with buyers feeling the conditions are right for moving. The first six weeks of this year saw 16% more homes sold than the same period in 2023 and 3% more compared to the pre-Covid market of 2019. However, the market remains price sensitive, with the time it takes to find a buyer more than two weeks longer than in February last year.

House price data from the Office for National Statistics shows a 1.4% decrease in the UK's average property cost to £285,000. This is a £4,000 decrease from November's figure. The annual rate of house price inflation has been declining since July 2022, but December's -1.4% figure was up from the -2.3% recorded for the 12 months to November. Significant variations across the UK were also observed, with England experiencing a 2.1% decrease, Wales a 2.5% decrease, Scotland a 3.3% increase, and Northern Ireland the cheapest country to buy.

London's average price remains the most expensive region, with the lowest annual price inflation. North West England experienced the highest annual percentage change, with an increase of 1.2%.



Work With Claudine

With more than a decade of experience, Claudine Montano possesses a strong business acumen of Toronto’s constantly evolving real estate market. Claudine Montano is a Broker of Record with RE/MAX Hallmark Montano Group Realty affiliated with RE/MAX Hallmark.

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