House prices increased 1.3% in September

UK house price growth held steady with a 1.3% increase over the year to September, official figures show.

The increase was unchanged from August, according to the data released jointly by the Office for National Statistics, the Land Registry and other bodies.

Across the UK, the average price was £234,000.

Average prices increased to £251,000 in England (1% annual growth), £164,000 in Wales (2.6%), £155,000 in Scotland (2.4%), and £140,000 in Northern Ireland (4%).

Prices in London and the East of England dipped year-on-year, with falls of 0.4% and 0.2% respectively.

At the other end of the spectrum, the North West was the English region with the highest growth, at 2.8%, followed by Yorkshire and the Humber at 2.2%.

London remained the most expensive place at an average of £475,000.

The North East is the only English region where house prices are yet to surpass their pre-economic downturn peak. The average house price in the North East was £133,000.

Jeremy Leaf, a north London estate agent and former residential chairman of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics), said: “A surprising aspect perhaps of these figures is that there hasn’t been more of a reduction in view of the recent political turmoil.

“But what we are finding on the ground is relief that the end of the beginning at least may soon be in sight for Brexit uncertainty.

“This is resulting in more realism and release of some pent-up demand in expectation of some post-election improvement in activity.

“London still has some way to go to catch up with other parts of the country bearing in mind previously stretched affordability.”

Debapratim De, an economist at Deloitte, said: “Today’s house price data show the London housing market continues to be afflicted by uncertainty over Brexit – which, combined with a slowdown in hiring, makes an immediate recovery seem unlikely.”

Howard Archer, chief economic adviser at EY ITEM Club, said: “Annual house price increases are likely to remain limited to around 1% on most measures in the near term, and could even slip back.

“The economy still looks set for a challenging 2020 even if there is a Brexit deal so the upside for house prices is likely to be limited.”

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