Annual house prices continue to fall in September - Nationwide
Annual house prices fell again in September as high interest rates continue to dent affordability, according to a survey released by Nationwide on Monday.
Annual house prices were down 5.3% in September, in line with the decline seen in August, which was the weakest since July 2009.
On the month, prices were flat, having fallen by 0.8% in August. The average price of a property now stands at £257,808.
Nationwide chief economist Robert Gardner said: "Housing market activity remains weak, with just 45,400 mortgages approved for house purchase in August, circa 30% below the monthly average prevailing in 2019 before the pandemic struck. This relatively subdued picture is not surprising given the more challenging picture for housing affordability. For example, someone earning an average income and purchasing the typical first-time buyer home with a 20% deposit would spend 38% of their take home pay on their monthly mortgage payment - well above the long-run average of 29%.
"However, investors have marked down their expectations for the future path of Bank Rate in recent months amid signs that underlying inflation pressures in the UK economy are finally easing, and with labour market conditions softening. This in turn has put downward pressure on longer term interest rates which underpin fixed rate mortgage pricing. If sustained, this will ease some of the pressure on those remortgaging or looking to buy a home."
The week before last, the Bank of England stood pat on interest rates for the first time in nearly two years, at 5.25%.