Experts predict £10k rise in house prices this year

Amidst the doom and gloom of petrol prices, VAT rises and soaring fuel bills, there is one tiny ray of light for homeowners – experts are predicting a rise in house prices.

House prices are expected to rise this year
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There had been rumours of further misery in the property market but the latest figures suggest otherwise.

According to investment firm Assetz, though sales fell during the second half of 2010, the average house price in December was still over £9,000 higher than at the start of last year.

In fact, prices grew by one per cent last month, suggesting that the market may be stabilising.

Stuart Law, chief executive of Assetz, told the Daily Express: "The acute housing shortage and rental squeeze remain the key medium-term drivers in the property market's recovery underpinning prices for the foreseeable future.

"As positive forces continue to outweigh the negatives we forecast house price growth of five per cent for 2011."

That means a rise of almost £10,000 on the average property.

But what of the expected rise in interest rates? Mr Law insisted that "a rise in interest rates will happen only when the Bank of England is certain of the economic recovery being well underway."

Meanwhile Andrew Montlake, director of Coreco mortgage brokers, said: "Agents are crying out for good-quality property and prices are holding up especially in high-demand areas.

"With mortgage rates still low and savings rates negligible, we are seeing an increasing level of inquiries from those wishing to buy and take advantage of current conditions.

"For those with the funds in place, this could prove to be an excellent time to invest in property."

So, while first time buyers may still find it a struggle getting on the property ladder, for those who have already secured a mortgage and homeowners looking to sell, the future is looking a shade brighter.

Will the property market pick up this year? Are you a first time buyer trying to get on the property ladder? Let us know below...