The data published by the Land registry show that prices in England and Wales have experienced a year-on-year increase.
The biggest annual and monthly rise was registered in London in March. The lowest price increase, instead, was seen in Wales. The number of completed houses sold also rose by 30% in comparison with 2009. March was the fifth consecutive month of increase in prices in England and Wales. In the East Midlands, there was the biggest price drop between February and March.
The price of detached homes has risen by 10.5%. Flats and maisonettes rose in price by 9.1%. The price of semi-detached homes increased by 8.1%. The price increase for terraced homes amounted to 4.5%. Despite this rise in price, the housing market activity is not robust yet and house prices are likely to be flat overall 2010.
House sales in the UK are reviving. The level of sales in the first quarter of 2010 was higher than the same period last year. However, sales are less than the number reported before the market crisis that followed the credit crunch. A big rise in sales between February and March is normal for the real estate market of the UK. The Council of Mortgage Lenders has confirmed that the activity is expected to be still subdued in 2010 and has warned that lenders’ finances are likely to be still severely restricted.
Anyway, gross lending for house purchase increased in March and the major UK lenders expect the new stamp duty land tax relief will have a positive impact on mortgages requested by first-time buyers, even if at the same time, some lenders perceive the possibility to obtain a deposit for the purchase of a house as the greater constraint to house purchase.
After a quality-price analysis, the Halifax has underlined that houses in the UK are less affordable than 50 years ago. The lender claims that UK house prices have risen by 2.7% a year over the last five decades.
The research has shown that four big price booms have occurred in the last 50 years: from 1971 to 1973, from 1977 to 1980, from 1985 to 1989 and from 1998 to 2007. The average value of homes has almost quadrupled since 1959.
The rise in prices may prove that buying a home has been considered a good long-term investment for some people.
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