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Hometrack: House prices fall in September

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by Kay Mitchell
”Hometrack:

According to housing intelligence group, Hometrack, house prices in England and Wales fell in September – the 15th consecutive monthly fall.

According to Hometrack, house prices dipped by 0.1% in September on a monthly basis and are 3.5% lower on the year.

Hometrack attributes the ongoing trend to weak demand for housing on the uncertainty surrounding the economy, the imbalance between supply and demand, as well as the euro zone debt crisis.

Over the nine month period to September, the number of new properties coming on to the market rose 22% compared to just an 11% increase in demand, the company said.

The London-based company said the number of new buyers registering with estate agents fell 2.6% last month and follows August’s 1.6% drop.

Richard Donnell, director of research at Hometrack, comments: “The September survey shows a clear shift in the balance between supply and demand in the housing market, with the number of people looking to buy falling for the second month in a row.

Mr Donnell expects demand to continue to fall over the remainder of 2011.

In the meantime, Hometrack said properties in the North, Midlands and Wales continue to see the longest time on the market at an average of 11 weeks before an offer is made, compared with around 6 weeks in London.

In other news, last week, the Nationwide Building Society said house prices rose by just 0.1% in September on a monthly basis.

Like Hometrack, the Nationwide expects prices to struggle throughout the remainder of the year due to the euro zone sovereign debt crisis which is denting confidence and driving up banks’ funding costs.

Last week, HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) revealed a fall in the number of homes sold in August in the UK.

According to HMRC, 78,000 homes worth at least £40,000 or more were sold in the month – 6,000 less than the previous month and 3,000 lower than in August 2010.

Today’s figures from Hometrack, together with other housing reports over the last few weeks, suggest the housing market will remain depressed for the remainder of the year.

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News posted: October 3, 2011

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