House prices still on the up?
According to the Land Registry, house prices in England and Wales are up by an average 3.45% since September last year (9.3% in London) with the average house price in September 2013 standing at £167.063. Many in the industry argue that this is a case of supply and demand: supply has contracted by 2% over the last two months whereas demand has increased by 3%. The market has undeniably been boosted by Help to Buy, low interest rates and changes in the mortgage market. Gross lending for the third quarter of 2013 was an estimated £49.3bn, a 17.6% increase on the second quarter of 2013 and a 32% increase on the third quarter of last year.
Sales are up 17% in the year from July 2012 to July 2013, although it is taking slightly longer for stock to move, with an average period of just over 8 weeks on the market before an offer is made. It remains to be seen how much further prices can rise before buyers dig their heels in.