UK House Prices Fall at Fastest Rate for Almost Eight Years

House prices across Yorkshire and the UK have fallen at their fastest monthly rate for almost eight years in April, adding to signs that the UK housing market is weakening, according to Halifax.

 

The drop, measuring 3.1%, is the largest since September 2010 and knocked an average of £7,140 off the average price of a home, which fell to £220,962. Halifax, the nations largest mortgage lender, said that demand for housing had weakened since the turn of the year with mortgage approvals falling and the number of completed sale transactions down.

This is in addition to a lower than expected number of homes being put on the market. However, Halifax don’t believe that prices are likely to collapse any time soon thanks to the strength of the labour market and wage growth finally picking up.

The numbers are also being skewed significantly by the London property market, which has seen falling house prices for some time now. Regional growth figures from Halifax last month found that the price of a typical house in London was £430,749 between January and March, the lowest since the end of 2015.

Over that same period of time, properties in Yorkshire and Humber rose 6.1%, highlighting a growing disparity in housing growth around the country and the success of housing policy in our region.

Annually, Halifax are expecting a nationwide average of 0% – 3% growth, a rather large target that highlights the uncertainty in the housing market almost six months into the year.

Speaking on the results, Samuel Tombs, the chief UK economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics, said: “Looking ahead, consumers’ low confidence and modest rises in mortgage rates suggest that demand will continue to weaken.

“Prices will fall rapidly, though, only when a large proportion of homeowners are forced to sell up. With unemployment and borrowing costs low and credit freely available, few people are being forced to sell their homes quickly. A period of broadly flat house prices, therefore, remains the most likely outcome.”

Meanwhile, the Leeds Monk Bridge site has had two schemes submitted which would result in the construction of more than 800 flats, split across two separate projects. The plans submitted confirm that the plan would be a joint venture between developer ART PRS Leeds GP and Foundation Real Estate.

BAM’s property arm is proposing the larger of the two developments, which will consist of 463 flats in 17 and 21 storey high blocks, linked by a podium on Whitehall Road, south of the grade-2 listed viaduct.

The other scheme is slated for the second phase of development and will be north of the viaduct and ART PRS Leeds is looking for planning for one 14 and one 21 storey block housing 357 apartments and a restaurant, with the larger property boasting a design by Jeffrey Bell, inspired heavily by 1930’s New York art-deco designs, a form which will certainly transform Leeds’ city skyline. 

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