House prices down 0.8 per cent since January
According to the data, the average property value in England and Wales is now £162,215.
Two regions in England and Wales experienced increases in their average property values over the last 12 months. The region with the highest annual price change was London with an increase of 3.2%. The East experienced the greatest monthly rise with a movement of 1.2%. The region with the greatest annual price fall is the North East with a decrease of -7.1%. The North East also experienced the most significant monthly price fall with a movement of -4%.
The most up-to-date figures available show that during December 2010, the number of completed house sales in England and Wales dropped by 30% to 54,812 from 78,438 in December 2009. The number of properties sold in England and Wales for over £1 million increased by 3% between December 2009 and December 2010, from 522 to 540.
Commenting, Capital Economics said: “The Land Registry Repeat Sales index fell in February, more than reversing January’s modest rise. London was not immune from house price falls. But the most striking figures were for the North East, which became the first region to see house prices fall below the previous low recorded in mid-2009.”
Paul Hunt, managing director of Phoebus Software said: “Flat lending in February and the continuing economic uncertainty led the average property price to dip significantly in February.
“Following last week’s budget, it’s clear the government is desperate to stimulate lending, especially to bring more first-time buyers to the market, but it isn’t providing the solid economic evidence required to convince lenders that backing the UK’s borrowers would be any less risky than a bet on the English cricket team.
“This is the biggest month-on-month drop for two years and this time there’s no room for blaming the snow. The economy is currently providing plenty of reasons for lenders to be worried and until sustained growth is visible on the economic horizon, demand will remain limp and property prices uninspiring.”