House prices fall by 0.6%
Land Registry figures show that house prices fell by 0.6% on both a monthly and annual basis in March. Even London – where the property market has remained relatively strong – saw a 1.8% fall in house prices in March.
It seems more than likely that these figures are related to the recent mortgage rate rises introduced by many of the banks as they struggle to balance their books on the back of a weak economy and the increased cost of funding.
Nevertheless, recent surveys by Halifax and Zoopla indicate that people are generally growing in confidence about the future of the housing market, with more than half of British home owners anticipating an increase in house prices next year. First-time buyers also seem in a more positive frame of mind with half of the Halifax respondents being confident that they would be able to fund a deposit themselves by saving, whilst 16% said they would get help from their parents and 16% said they planned to use the Government’s NewBuy scheme.