New era of more expensive borrowing applies downward pressure

19th April 2023

Latest ONS HPI figures have been published this morning and show:

  • On a seasonally adjusted basis, the average UK house price decreased by 0.3% in February 2023, following a decrease of 0.2% in January 2023.
  • On a non-seasonally adjusted basis, the average UK house price decreased by 1.0% in February 2023, following a decrease of 0.6% in January 2023
  • Average UK house prices increased by 5.5% in the 12 months to February 2023, down from 6.5% in January 2023.
  • The average UK house price was £288,000 in February 2023, which is £16,000 higher than 12 months ago, but £5,000 below the recent peak in November 2022.

 Andy Sommerville, Director at Search Acumen, the property data and insight provider, comments:

“We are continuing to see house prices fall as the cost of living and a new era of more expensive borrowing puts downward pressure on valuations. Figures today show inflation is falling, but unfortunately at a slower rate than had been expected, and the knock-on implication could be further rate rises when the Bank of England Monetary Policy Committee next meets. But, if we pencil in another interest rate rise, this will likely mean we continue to see house prices stagnate for a little longer over the months ahead before a stabilisation and recovery later in the year and into 2024 as inflation comes down more significantly.

“The prospect of a slower return to growth after we have already seen three consecutive months of falling prices will obviously be concerning for buyers, sellers and their agents and advisors, all of whom need to find ways to cut costs to ride out the current challenges. Cutting notoriously slow transaction times by digitising manual processes is one route towards major savings that could be extremely valuable right now. We would advise businesses to look at where technology might improve their ability to drive transactions forward, and we would recommend that buyers and sellers factor in the digital platforms and services offered by their agents and solicitors when making decisions on who to instruct, as this could save them significant time and money throughout their transaction.”


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