Halifax House Price Index - April 2012

04 May 2012

UK house price growth on an underlying basis remains relatively subdued, according to the latest Halifax House Price Index.

Commenting, Martin Ellis, housing economist, said:
"Prices in the three months to April were 0.3% higher than in the previous quarter, marking the first rise in this measure for seven months. Despite the slight improvement in the underlying trend in recent months, house prices continue to lack real direction with the current UK average price little different to where it was at the end of 2011. The monthly figures continue to fluctuate quite widely with a 2.4% decline in April, wiping out March's 2.2% rise.

"The ending of the stamp duty holiday for first-time buyers in late March appears to have boosted home sales early this year as buyers strove to beat the deadline, and has probably contributed to the volatility in house prices in the last few months.

"We continue to expect little overall movement in prices as the UK economic situation remains challenging."

 Key facts

  • House prices in the three months to April were 0.3% higher than in the preceding three months (November 2011-January 2012). This was the first increase in prices on this measure of the underlying trend since September 2011 (0.1%), following six successive falls.
  • On a monthly basis, house prices fell by 2.4% in April. This more than offset the previous month's 2.2% increase as prices continue to fluctuate month-to-month.
  • Prices in the three months to April were 0.5% lower than in the same period a year earlier. This measure of the annual rate improved slightly from -0.6% in March and showed the smallest fall in prices since October 2010 (+1.2%).
  • No change in the average UK house price so far this year. The UK average price in April 2012, at £159,883, was virtually the same as in December 2011 (£159,888).
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