Confidence weakens as house price indices remain volatile
Volatility has made it hard to see what has really been going on in the housing market over recent months, with the Halifax and Nationwide indices moving equal amounts in opposite directions in June. Average UK house prices increased 0.3% in July according to Nationwide, down from June’s spike of 1.1% and almost back in line with the 0.4% average monthly growth reported between January 2014 and February 2017.
Surveyors’ perceptions of price growth have eventually fallen back, with a much smaller majority reporting three month price rises in June, compared to the previous nine months. This reflects the lack of growth shown in the main house price indices. The majority of surveyors also reported falling numbers of both buyer enquiries and vendor instructions for the fifth month in a row. These indicators suggest that activity within the market is subdued and likely to remain so for the rest of 2017 as weak economic indicators and political uncertainty affect sentiment in the market.