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Bovis expects only 4 per cent house price growth in 2004

08 January 2004
Housebuilder Bovis has issued downbeat predictions for house price growth in 2004 this morning.

The Kent-based company has declared that it expects only 4 per cent house price growth this year - half that predicted by the Halifax bank earlier in the week.

Nonetheless, Bovis anticipated a more even rate of growth across the country, which has seen a boom in the north and a slowdown in the south east and London.

Malcolm Harris, chief executive of Bovis, announced, “I expect a more even distribution of house price growth this year - with demand in the South East and London likely to pick up, ensuring that the region performs as well as the North and the Midlands.”

Mr Harris also predicted that the housing market will remain strong, despite the widely anticipated drift of interest rates back up to around 5 per cent.

“The average mortgage rate during the last ten years has been about 9.5 per cent, so even if they rise to 5 per cent, that still looks quite cheap”, he argued, adding, “Employment remains very strong and I am expecting a good, healthy market.”

Bovis reports its results for 2003 on March 8 - analysts are predicting a 12 per cent increase in profits, to £118 million.