Housing demand
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Housing demand remains resilient fuelling “cautious optimism” among new sellers in most regions of the UK, according to a new report from Rightmove.

Average asking prices were up by 0.8 per cent (£2,414) this month, with all regions but one recording the price of newly-marketed property rising this month. The south west was “a very marginal exception” with a fall of £131.

The annual rate of increase however, is still subdued at 1.5 per cent, according to Rightmove’s report. It has been buffeted by London’s year-on-year fall of one per cent.

Rightmove compiles London borough data based on a three month rolling average to provide an indicator of overall price trends in each borough over time.

Here’s how house prices have been changing across the capital:

The risers:

Borough Avg. price Feb 2018 Monthly change Annual change
Bexley £408,466 1.3 per cent 4.2 per cent
Hackney £654,695 0.2 per cent 3.6 per cent
Barking and Dagenham £317,065 0.2 per cent Three per cent
Havering £409,814 0.4 per cent 2.8 per cent
Redbridge £453,600 0.1 per cent 1.3 per cent
Haringey £607,736 1.4 per cent 1 per cent
Croydon £440,521 -0.2 per cent 0.8 per cent
Greenwich £446,158 1.1 per cent 0.5 per cent
Hillingdon £493,167 1.6 per cent 0.2 per cent
Hounslow £542,843 -0.8 per cent 0.1 per cent

The fallers

Borough Avg. price Feb 2018 Monthly change Annual change
Lambeth £635,376 -1.4 per cent -7.3 per cent
Camden £978,381 0.1 per cent -5.8 per cent
Merton £621,033 -0.2 per cent -5.7 per cent
Richmond upon Thames £811,377 -0.4 per cent -4.1 per cent
Islington £743,566 0.2 per cent -3.8 per cent
Brent £571,722 -0.6 per cent -3.5 per cent
Harrow £549,413 0.0 per cent -3.3 per cent
Barnet £637,757 0.1 per cent -3.3 per cent
Tower Hamlets £588,847 -1.2 per cent -2.9 per cent
Enfield £446,688 0.4 per cent -2.9 per cent

Miles Shipside, Rightmove director and housing market analyst, said:

Whilst it is the norm for new sellers’ asking prices to be buoyant at the start of a new year, this first complete month in 2018 is seeing more pricing optimism than the comparable period in 2017.

The political and economic uncertainty is out of sellers’ control, but they are in control of their asking prices, and in general they are not being overly ambitious or setting too high an asking price.

Shipside said, nationally, two per cent more sellers had come to market this month compared to the same period a year ago – “a small step in the right direction”.

It comes as chartered surveyor firm e.surv’s new mortgage monitor for February reported a positive start to the year for the UK mortgage market, with an increase in the number of small deposit borrowers being approved.

It found that a fifth of all approvals went to small deposit buyers – well above recent months. In December, 18.2 per cent of loans were to this part of the market while the month before that was 17.2 per cent.

Richard Sexton, director at e.surv, said: “We are now starting to see the effects of the Bank of England’s decision to increase the base rate filtering through to the market.”

Figures out last week said that the number of mortgages taken out by first-time buyers had surged last year, to its highest level since 2006.

Source: City A.M.

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