Halifax House Price Index: Price rises gather pace


HalifaxAfter the Nationwide released their latest house prices figures last week, today is the turn of the Halifax.

According to the UK’s largest lender house prices rose by a modest 0.4% in August, but are up 5.4% over the past 12 months, taking the average house value to £170,231.

The annual rise reported by the Halifax is higher than the 3.5% figure given by the Nationwide, who in turn reported a larger rise in August; both lenders broadly agree on the value of the average home in the UK.

The Halifax also points out that the number of mortgage approvals specifically for the purchase of a property, often seen as a barometer of the market, rose by 4% between June and July and hit 60,000 for the first time since the height of the financial crisis and credit crunch in 2008.

Commenting, Martin Ellis, housing economist, said: “House prices in the three months to August were 2.1% higher than in the previous three months; unchanged from both June and July. Prices in the three months to August were 5.4% higher than in the same three months last year, the highest annual rate since June 2010.”

“Economic improvement and low interest rates, supported by official schemes such as Funding for Lending and Help to Buy, appear to have boosted housing demand in recent months. Nonetheless, relatively modest economic growth and below inflation rises in earnings are likely to act as a brake on the market. Overall, house prices are expected to rise gradually over the remainder of the year.”