Property Market Loses Steam

Another month of restrained house price growth has been reported by Nationwide over September, with a decrease in annual property price inflation from 18.9% in August to 17.8% in September.

According to the mortgage lender, whose figures take seasonal trends into account, prices went up in September by just 0.2%, compared with a rise of 0.1% in August and a rise of 2.1% in July. Nationwide’s average UK property price now stands at £153,727.

Wales, the North and the North West once again have the fastest growing markets. However, according to this research, these could be the most exposed markets in the event of a slowdown: ‘In our view these three regions, where rapid price growth has been in evidence over the last few years, are the most stretched and, therefore, the most vulnerable to a significant slowdown,’ said Alex Bannister, Nationwide’s Group Economist.

In spite of the reduced growth, Nationwide expects prices to grow, on average, by 0.8% per month for the rest of the year, and does not predict a property market crash: ‘Given the positive outlook for the economy and the jobs market in particular, we expect the market to tread water, involving subdued price growth, rather than experience a sustained widespread slump in prices,’ said Mr Bannister.