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November 12, 2007    

Government house price figures prelude sharp reduction

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by Gill Montia

Latest figures from the Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG) show a 0.3% rise in house prices in September.

The figure compares with an increase of 0.5% in August and brings the annual rate of house price inflation to 10.8%, down from 11.3% in August.

According to the data, which is based on completed sales and therefore published later than other surveys, the average price of a home in the UK is now £220,111.

In September the rate of annual house price growth slowed to 10.1% in England, 12.5% in Scotland and 6.2% in Wales.

The strongest rate of annual growth was still to be found in Northern Ireland, at 42.7%.

However, the September figure for the region was down from 45.4% in August.

London annual house price inflation fell from 17.2% in August to 16.5% in September.

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) has added that the cost of property fell at its fastest rate for two years during September.

At the same time, the number of people seeking to purchase a new home decreased for the 10th month in a row.

According to David Stubbs, RICS senior economist, the DCLG figures are “the prelude to a sharper reduction in house price growth which is happening right now”.

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