The latest data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) shows the average UK property price standing at £294,000 in December, an increase of 9.8% annually, slowing from 10.6% annual growth in November. East Midlands had the highest annual growth, while Scotland remains the slowest-growing part of the UK.
Average house prices increased over the 12 months to £315,000 (10.3% annual growth) in England, £222,000 in Wales (10.3%), £187,000 in Scotland (5.7%), and £175,000 in Northern Ireland (10.2%). London saw the weakest annual price rise but the highest average, at £543,000. The North East had the lowest average house price of all English regions, at £164,000 in December.
Rising interest rates, higher mortgage borrowing costs, the cost of living crisis, and the economic outlook have started to cool the UK housing market. Marc von Grundherr, director of Benham and Reeves, suggests the combination of these factors led to the reduction in the rate of house price growth since the closing stages of last year. The rate of decline has been marginal, which should bode well for the year ahead.
Advice to Home Buyers and Sellers
Myron Jobson, the senior personal finance analyst at Interactive Investor, warns that house prices are not the only key determinant for home buyers and sellers. Personal circumstances might require individuals to buy a home. He recommends that if the numbers don't work out, it is more financially prudent to wait until individuals are more comfortable financially to buy.