Property market stumbles as house price growth remains at seven-year low

Annual house price growth froze at the start of the summer, sticking at its seven-year low in June.

Land Registry data has revealed that average prices grew 0.9% annually in June to £230,292, level with May and the lowest rate since November 2012.

Monthly growth also remained at 0.7%.

House price growth was strongest in Wales where prices increased by 4.4% in the year to June, down from 4.6% in the year to May.

The lowest annual growth was in London where prices fell by 2.7% annually. This is up from a 3.1% fall registered in May but it is now the 16th consecutive month of declines for the capital.

During the economic downturn of 2008 and 2009, average prices fell in London for 15 consecutive months.

The Land Registry’s provisional figures on transactions painted a mixed picture.

Its estimate for April 2019 – based on around 85% of the final registered transactions – suggested that sales may have increased by 6.8% annually across the UK in April.

It compared provisional data for April 2019 with provisional data from the same month a year before.

This showed estimated volume transactions increased by 7.9% in England, 6% in Scotland, 5.9% in Wales and decreased by 1.8% in Northern Ireland.

However, it also noted more recent HMRC transaction data for June that showed sales were down 16.5% annually and fell 9.7% on a monthly basis.

Commenting on the figures, Richard Donnell, research and insight director for Zoopla, said: “Annual house price growth presents a mixed bag with significant variations across regions.

“Whilst London remains at the epicentre of the drag on overall growth, annual price falls in London are more moderate than last month.

“Signs of greater realism on pricing from sellers has resulted in a small but important increase in sales, but affordability and weak market sentiment are still the main constraints here.”

Rental inflation performed similarly, with annual growth remaining at 1.3% in July, unchanged since May, according to ONS.

Rents in England rose 1.4% annually in July, up from 1.3% a month before, while Wales saw prices grow by 1%, down from 1.1% in June.

Annual rental growth in Scotland increased by 0.9% in the 12 months to July, unchanged since June, while Northern Ireland registered growth of 2.1%.

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