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Halifax: UK house prices ‘static’ amid hopes of rate cuts

House prices were “static” in May after falling 0.1% on a monthly basis, according to the latest Halifax House Price Index.

The lender’s latest figures suggest the average UK house price was £288,688 last month.

The figure was up 1.5% annually, slightly better than the 1.1% posted in April.


The North West was the strongest performing nation or region in the UK, where house prices grew 3.8% on an annual basis in May. The average price of a property in the North West is now £232,258.

Northern Ireland continues to show strong annual growth, up 3.2% in May, pulling back slightly from 3.3% in April.

Eastern England recorded the largest decline in annual growth across the UK. House prices there now average £329,853, down 0.8% in May on an annual basis, according to Halifax.

Unsurprisingly, London continues to have the most expensive average price tag, now at £536,821, up marginally by 0.2% compared with last year.

Amanda Bryden, head of mortgages at Halifax, said: “Market activity remained resilient throughout the Spring months, supported by strong nominal wage growth and some evidence of an improvement in confidence about the economic outlook.

“This has been reflected in a broadly stable picture in terms of property price movements, with the average cost of a property little changed over the last three months.

“A period of relative stability in both house prices and interest rates should give a degree of confidence to both buyers and sellers. While homebuyers and those remortgaging will continue to respond to changes in borrowing costs, set against a backdrop of a limited supply of available properties, the market is unlikely to see huge fluctuations in the near term.”

Commenting on the data, Tom Bill, head of UK residential research at Knight Frank, said: “House prices remain under pressure as an interest rate cut moves further over the horizon. Demand will typically rise in spring but there has been a 0.3% price decline over the last three months thanks to stubborn services inflation and rising swap rates.

“There should be a more noticeable bounce this Autumn when the first rate cut since March 2020 is likely to have happened and the political backdrop will have stabilised. We expect UK prices to rise by 3% this year as the prospect of more mortgages starting with a 3 gets closer.”

Nathan Emerson chief executive at Propertymark, added: “The housing market seems to be generally moving in the right direction, with house prices going up annually from this time last year.

“With a General Election now on the horizon, there may be potential caution from buyers and sellers, especially those hoping to step onto the housing ladder for the first time, as they await any announcements regarding government support. People will also be carefully awaiting the Bank of England’s next announcement this month.”


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