Nationwide Study Reveals Drop in UK House Prices

Posted by Staff writer on Jan 04, 2013 08:07 AM EST
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Housing markets have been improving across all the states in the U.S., according to a recent survey conducted by Freddie Mac, the government backed lending giant. (Photo : Images_of_Money / Flickr)

A recent study conducted by U.K's financial giant, Nationwide Building Society, revealed that house prices in the country recorded a 1 percent decline throughout 2012.

A typical home in the U.K. costs around £162,262 ($101,194). However, the prices fluctuate from region to region. A huge difference in prices was noted between the northern and southern regions of the country, reported Vantage Realty.

In December, home prices on an average went down by 0.1 percent. Prices in North Ireland stooped by 8.2 percent while those in the English region dropped by 0.4 percent. Scotland and Wales witnessed a 3.3 and 2.7 percent slump in the prices respectively, reported The Guardian.

The average cost of a house in Northern England, North West and east Midlands, Yorkshire and Humberside was around £133,778 ($ 217,429), while that in the regions of South east and South west London and east Anglia amounted to £228,257 ($370,986), reported The Guardian.

London was, however, revealed to be stronger than the other poorly performing markets. Manchester and Bradford were the two worst performing cities for the housing market.

The housing sector will witness low growth, according to experts. The recession hit country did not show much signs of development in the previous year. Prices in the housing sector are expected to be low or modestly flat throughout the year.

"Given that the UK economy was in recession for much of 2012 a 1% decline in house prices may be seen as a relatively resilient performance. However, the fact that prices declined even though employment rose strongly, suggests that conditions remain fragile, especially since other signs of housing market activity, such as the number of mortgage approvals, remained subdued, well below their long run averages," Robert Gardner, chief economist at Nationwide told Property Wire.

Gardner also mentioned that the outlook of the market seems uncertain. However, the low rates of interest and integrated policies should offer some respite to the ailing industry.

Recently, Nationwide introduced the new "Save to Buy" scheme for first time home buyers where a 95 percent mortgage loan extension is being offered provided the borrowers commit to deposit a minimum of £50 ($66) per month in the savings account.

With potential investors worrying about their returns and some others dealing with affordability issues, the real estate market of the country is bound to face some highs and lows this year.

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