House prices remain stable

28 July 2003
House prices in England and Wales are "stabilising" according to Hometrack.

The most recent survey from the property website shows that house prices have remained stable for the second successive month.

The rate of decrease in house prices in the south of England slowed in July, while house price inflation in the north of England and Wales also slowed.

Overall, Hometrack said the housing market was showing tentative signs of recovery, with a five per cent increase in sales in July.

Sellers reportedly received an average 95 per cent of their asking price, a marginal increase on June's figures and the first increase for 13 months.

Prices fell most in Sussex, Avon, Bedfordshire and Surrey, while the steepest rises were seen in Mid and North Wales, South Wales, South Yorkshire and South Lincolnshire.

However, homes are now taking longer to sell, with an average of five weeks and 11 viewings.

John Wriglesworth, Hometrack's housing economist, commented: "In terms of price changes, there has been nothing happening since December and the housing market remains as dull as ditchwater."

Hometrack has now lowered its forecast for house price inflation for 2003 to just three per cent.

In total 24 counties reported no rise in prices, 16 reported increases and 17 reported price falls.