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What is the Halifax house price index saying?

Inevitably the current situation is going to impact on house prices. The most recent Halifax house price index suggested that house prices edged down by 0.2 per cent in May. It also notes however that there has been an annual growth of 2.6 per cent, meaning that average house price in the UK now stands at £237,808. Enable’s experienced IFAs know that house prices are all relative.

Halifax managing director Russell Galley says there is very little data as lock-down has been limiting transactions. This means that not only is it very hard to accurately work out house price data but that it increases the appearance of price volatility. He added that Halifax has every confidence in the future of the housing market over the long term but, short term, performance depends on “how quickly the economy is able to recover… and the available government policy support for jobs and households.”

Sourced Capital managing director Stephen Moss agrees regarding the difficulty in producing house price data. He says: “We’re now entering a period of ‘index instability’ in the sense that cold, hard data on any pandemic impact isn’t really available”. There have however been a steady stream of pragmatic buyers keen to capitalise on the current volatile market. We all need somewhere to live. 

Chief Executive of Garrington Property Finders Jonathan Hopper stresses that there is likely to be a greater regional divergence from now on: “England’s estate agents only reopened for business in mid-May, and agents remain closed elsewhere in the UK, so this May price data should be taken with a shovelful of salt.

Glenhawk Chief Executive Guy Harrington says: “The housing market was inevitably going to join the conga line of economic casualties…. However, we must note that this crisis isn’t liquidity driven and what hasn’t changed overnight is the huge demand supply imbalance of nearly all housing tenures across the UK.”


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