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House prices relatively unchanged in Q3: Halifax

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House prices rose a negligible amount in the quarter to October but were up more than 5 per cent on the same period last year, according to the latest Halifax House Price Index.

The index found a quarter-by-quarter house price rise of 0.1 per cent in the three months to October and an annual increase of 5.25 per cent on the same period last year.

Prices rose by 1.4 per cent in the month to October and the average UK house price stood at £217,411 for the month.

Halifax housing economist Martin Ellis says: “Activity levels, like house price growth, have softened compared with a year ago. Home sales, however, appear to have stabilised in recent months following the distortions earlier in the year due to the changes to stamp duty in April.

“Annual house price growth has nearly halved from a peak of 10.0 per cent in March this year, but remains robust at 5.2 per cent. This expected slowdown appears to have been largely due to mounting affordability pressures, which have increasingly constrained housing demand. Whilst house price growth may ease further in the coming months, very low mortgage rates and a shortage of properties available for sale should help support price levels.”

London estate agent and former RICS residential chairman Jeremy Leaf, says: “On the ground we are finding a determination among buyers and sellers to do business where possible provided both are realistic in terms of price.

“Whatever the outcome of the US election, the market will survive any ups and downs that it creates. However, a Trump victory would add to any uncertainty and have an impact not only on the housing market but on the stock market and the value of sterling.”

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