Various organisations measure average house prices, including the government and a number of estate agents. Each has its own way of collecting and measuring data, which differ and produce slightly different figures. Here is a resumé of how the main providers of house price information see the market at the moment. You can find more information about how they make these calculations here.
House prices still rising more than before COVID
All of the major players in this field agree that house prices are still rising more than before the COVID pandemic, although most say they can see the slowdown beginning.
The government’s latest UK House Price Index (HPI), which is based on data from all registrations of sale at the Land Registry, Registers of Scotland and Land and Property Services Northern Ireland, shows that average prices rose by 9.8% to £278,000 over the last year. Although this is £24,000 higher than at the same time last year, the rise was down on February’s increase of 11.3%. However, the HPI shows that growth in the East Midlands, which includes Derbyshire, was the highest, with house prices increasing by 12.4% in the year to March 2022 – an increase on the growth rate of 11.6% in the year ending February 2022.
Right Move, says that property prices have hit a fourth consecutive monthly record, with May 2022 showing a monthly growth of 2.1%. It suggests that the average house price is now £55,000 higher than before the COVID pandemic at £367,501. This compares with growth of just over £6,000 in the two years prior to the pandemic.
Meanwhile, Nationwide suggests that the average house price has increased by 12% in the year ending April 2022 to £267,620 and the Halifax says that in April 2022, average house prices had increased by 10.8% over the previous year to £286,079.
This frenzied growth in the housing market appears not to have completely abated, despite four recent interest rate rises to 1% and the inflation rate at 10%. Low supply and high demand have seen properties being snapped up and sellers in some regions achieving over 100% of their asking price and just over 1 million homes sold in 2021.
Will property price increases start to slow?
According to many analysts, property activity will now start to slow and house price increases will reduce. There is no real consensus as to how, or how much, with some saying that the market will remain buoyant for a while as there are still not enough properties on the market and demand is still high, whilst others feel that they have seen the slowdown coming for some time.
Right Move indicates that there are currently 14% fewer people contacting estate agents than there were during the stamp duty holiday, although it is still 31% up on activity in 2019. Estate agent, Knight Frank, says it expects house price rises to be in single-digit figures by the end of the year – when it also predicts that property supply will increase.
Caroline Murray, partner and head of Graysons’ property team says:
“Increased interest rates don’t appear to have had a huge impact on property sales here in Sheffield and Chesterfield at present, with houses still commanding more than or at least the asking price. As the inflation rate remains high, more interest rate rises expected in the coming year, and further increases in the cost of living, I’m sure activity will slow at some point. We will keep our eyes on the market and keep our website up to date with what is happening in our region.”
Author: Caroline Murray, partner and head of Graysons’ property team.