July News: UK House Prices Soar

The price of the average house in the United Kingdom has continued to soar upward, says a Government report showing a 9.9 per cent rise in price in the year up to April 2014.

The report states that the rise is the highest annual increase in UK house prices since May 2010, when prices rose 10.6 per cent.

The data comes from the April 2014 Housing Price Index, released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) which publishes monthly reports on the performance of the UK property market, among other duties.

The ONS attributes much of the price increase to activity in London, but notes that prices have risen across the country. It says excluding the capital and the south east, UK house prices increased 6.3 per cent in the year up to April 2014.

The ONS states the average price for a house in the UK in April 2014 was £260,000.

Danger or security?

Expert opinion on the matter has been sought by the Independent, speaking to charity leaders and finance experts.

Campbell Rob, the chief executive of housing charity Shelter, declared that housing prices were spinning out of control, he said:

"Each rise in prices means more people stuck living in their childhood bedrooms, or trapped in the cycle of moving from one expensive rented home to the next".

The senior lecturer and expert on mortgage finance at Nottingham Trent University, Dr Alla Koblyakova said:

"We are not seeing the effects of a bubble here. These price increases are mostly driven by better economic conditions, increases in investment and better lending conditions. There’s a positive correlation between house prices and current GDP growth. We’re seeing positive signs from the market."

Earlier in July Nationwide released its quarterly house price report, in which its chief economist, Robert Gardner, suggests that activity in the capital may be starting to moderate.

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