Annual house price growth slows but trend remains ‘robustly’ upward - Halifax

house-sold-signGrowth in UK house prices slowed during the first half of 2015, according to the country’s largest mortgage lender.

However, releasing its latest figures, the Halifax said prices were still rising “robustly”, with an annual pace of 7.9 per cent registered last month.

But this was down from 9.6 per cent in June and in July itself, prices actually fell, by 0.6 per cent, the largest monthly drop since April 2014.

The developments mean that the average price of a flat or house in the UK has dropped back down to £198,883.

But the Halifax data is at odds with rival lender Nationwide, the second largest mortgage lender in the UK, after it said this week that the rate of house price growth had actually picked up to 3.5 per cent in July, from 3.3 per cent a month earlier.

Howard Archer, chief UK economist with IHS Global Insight said the contrasting figures from the Halifax and Nationwide served as a warning against reading too much into any one survey.

“This highlights the need to not pin too much weight on one particular house price survey or measure, but to try and take an overall view from the data,” he said.

Mr Archer added that the sharp fall registered by the Halifax in July was “a correction” though the lender said it now expected strong growth in prices for the rest of the year.

Stephen Noakes, Halifax’s managing director of retail customer products said: “The underlying pace of house price growth remains robust notwithstanding the easing in July.”

He added: “Continuing economic recovery, earnings growth in excess of consumer price inflation, and very low mortgage rates all underpin housing demand.”

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