House prices jump 4.7% in year to September

UK average house prices saw an annual increase of 4.7% over the year to September 2020, new data published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has revealed.

House price growth was up from 3.0% in August 2020, to take the the average UK house price to a record high of £245,000.

The ONS revealed that average house prices increased over the year by 4.9% in England to £262,000, by 3.8% in Wales to £171,000, by 4.3% in Scotland to £162,000 and by 2.4% in Northern Ireland to £143,000.

The data also showed that London’s average house prices hit a record high of £496,000 in September.

Trussle head of mortgages, Miles Robinson, called the increase increase in house prices over the last year “unsurprising”.

“During this time, the market began to see a huge increase in transactions as buyers rushed to take advantage of the stamp duty holiday, with many purchases needing to start by October in order to have a realistic chance of completing in time,” Robinson said.

“As we draw closer to the stamp duty deadline and Christmas, which is typically a quieter time of year for the market, it’s likely demand will begin to slow. We’ve seen the first signs of this with reports indicating the first fall in house prices in four months. That said, given the regional disparity in completion times, this is likely to affect some areas of the country more than others.”

Barrows and Forrester managing director, James Forrester, added: “This continued price growth is being primarily driven by second and third rung buyers looking for larger homes in the wake of lockdown restrictions.

“A second national lockdown will only intensify this trend and as a result price growth should remain stable in the mid-term at the very least. Hopes of a vaccine will also breath new life into the market with any chance of a downturn looking slim at present.

“However, the end of the stamp duty holiday and the furlough scheme could still pose a danger with many predicting the market could fall off a cliff as demand dries up.”

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