Confidence falls for the sixth month in a row

The Woolwich consumer confidence index shows that just 40% of homeowners now believe that their property will continue to gain in value over the next year.

This is compared to 45% in October and 52% in September. This latest fall, the sixth monthly fall in a row, takes consumer confidence to a six year low.

Andy Gray, head of mortgages at Barclays and The Woolwich, says: “This fall has confirmed our prediction that confidence would soften in the wake of interest rate rises.

“Confidence levels tend to fall slightly at this time of year, and coupled with the slowdown in the housing market demonstrated by reduced growth in borrowing, today’s result is no surprise.

“We expect confidence to stabilize going forward and start to pick up slightly in spring 2005 as the traditional house buying period starts up.”

The South-West was the most confident region again last month and the only region where confidence increased.

Confidence fell the most in the Midlands, but the South East remains the least confident region with just 36% of home owners believing that their home will continue to increase in value over the next 12 months.