House price growth stalls in September
The Nationwide released its house price index for September today
What the Nationwide said
Average house price in September 2022 was £272,259
House prices fell by 0.6% or £1,492 in September (although unchanged after tracking into account seasonal factors
Annual house price inflation 9.5%
Are we at the turning point? Although annual house price inflation in September remained very robust at 9.5%, house prices slipped a little in September, with average prices falling by almost £1,500 before seasonal factors were taken into account (house prices were unchanged on a seasonally adjusted basis). Has the cost of living crisis finally placed a powerful punch on the property market or has the mini-budget scored an own goal?
Many have been, repeatedly, calling the turn in the housing market, is their persistence about to be rewarded. The Nationwide comments that over the last month mortgage approvals have been below pre-pandemic levels and RICS have said for a couple of months that the level of new buyer enquiries has been softening. But, and it's a big 'but', a shortage of homes for sale has kept supply tight and house price firm.
Following the events of the last Friday's mini-budget (yes that was only a week ago today) the dynamics in the housing market have changed. At the start of the pandemic, a temporary stamp duty holiday led to a surge in housing market activity. This time around, a permanent stamp duty cut, along with other tax cuts, appears to risk causing the housing market to stall as hundreds, if not thousands, of mortgage products have been taken off the shelves and several lenders have shut up shop for new buyers altogether.
The last time we saw such turmoil in the mortgage market was during the Global Financial Crisis when the level of housing activity halved and house prices fell by almost 20%.
The last week has been a long one raising lots of questions that still need to be answered, and with so much uncertainty ahead it is unlikely that house prices will continue to rise, although the last time I said that was at the start of the pandemic, and average house prices have increased by £56,000 since then.
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