UK house prices rise for first time in months in 'signs of recovery'
By Jack Walters
Published: 03/05/2023- 16:24
House prices across the United Kingdom rose in April for the first time in eight months, a building society has revealed.
Nationwide recorded a modest increase of just 0.5 per cent last month.
The slight surge saw average house prices reach £260,441 last month.
The figure stood at just £257,122 in March.
The slight surge saw average house prices reach £260,441 last month
However, house prices were down 2.7 per cent compared to April last year.
Robert Gardner, Nationwide’s chief economist, argued the figures showed “tentative signs of a recovery”.
He also claimed the Bank of England’s data showed the number of mortgages approved for house purchases in February was nearly 40 per cent below the rate a year earlier.
But mortgage applications have reportedly picked up in recent weeks and months.
Gardner said: “This chimes with recent shifts in consumer sentiment.
“While confidence remains subdued by historic standards, people’s views of their own financial position over the next 12 months, and general economic conditions in the year ahead, have both improved markedly in recent months.”
He added: “If inflation falls sharply in the second half of the year, as most analysts and the Bank of England expect, this would further boost confidence, especially if job market conditions remain strong.
“Unemployment has remained relatively low despite the economic slowdown.”
Robert Gardner, Nationwide’s chief economist, argued the figures showed “tentative signs of a recovery”
The housing market was dealt a major blow last autumn after ex-Prime Minister Liz Truss instructed then-Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng to deliver the pair’s tax-cutting mini-budget.
Threadneedle Street has continued to hike interest rates amid the ongoing cost of living crisis as inflation remains in double-figures.
The Bank of England made 11 consecutive rises as the rate soared from 0.1 per cent to 4.25 per cent.
A further increase to 4.5 per cent could come into force after policymakers meet next week.