House prices rose by just 0.1% in September, following a 0.8% drop in August, according to Nationwide – the average house price has marginally gone up from £166,507 to £166,757.
The building society described last month’s figures as “uneventful” and added that “buyers appear to have a slightly better hand than sellers at the moment”.
However, the quarter-on-quarter rate of change fell from 0% in August to -0.9% in September.
Martin Gahbauer, Nationwide’s chief economist, said: “This represents the first negative reading for the three month rate of change since May 2009 and is consistent with the clear loosening of housing market conditions observed over the summer months”.
However, he added that “although the three month rate of change has turned negative, at this stage it is not pointing to a significant pace of decline in property values”.
Simon Rubinsohn, chief economist at the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, said the Nationwide figures illustrate that the direction that house prices will take in the future remains uncertain.
Yet he did suggest that “low interest rates will remain a major prop for demand even if accessibility to mortgage finance remains challenging. Meanwhile, the boost to new instructions following the ending of Home Information Packs is likely to continue to fade”.