English house prices reach their highest ever level - Property - The Independent

English house prices reach their highest ever level

But it's still not a property bubble say experts

Latest figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) suggest that house prices in England are now at a record high.

While the ONS house price index for the UK is stilll slightly below the previous high of January 2008, the figures for England by itself are now 0.9 per cent higher than that peak.

One problem with the figures is that the rises in London and the South East are not reflected in all regions. So although prices in London rose by 9.7 per cent over the last 12 months according to the ONS, if the London and the South East (with a rise of 2.6 per cent) are left out, prices in the other regions of the UK only rose by 0.8 per cent. Indeed there were falls of 2 per cent in Scotland and 0.7 per cent in Wales over the same period.

Nicholas Ayre, Managing Director of homebuying agency Home Fusion said: "Are we about to see a house price bubble? This really isn’t about the panic buying witnessed in 2007, it is about growing, steady demand. First time buyers are now increasingly active, some now finding they can access the finance needed to get onto the property ladder and at more reasonable rates."

Peter Rollings, CEO at Marsh & Parsons, said: “Any talk of a housing bubble is wide of the mark. Prices in most parts of the country are still well below the market highs of 2007, and the recovery in many parts of the UK is relatively muted. Ultimately, house prices can only increase at a rate that people can afford – so while wages remain low, and lending continues to be checked, there is a limit to how high house prices can rise."

Andy Knee, Chief Executive of LMS, added: "The Bank of England is set to discuss the possible formation of a ‘bubble’ in the housing market at its Financial Policy Committee meeting tomorrow, exploring what action should be taken to prevent fall-out from a ‘burst’. However, such vast regional discrepancies reaffirm the fact that the existence of the bubble is still in question.

"Due to the nature of the housing market you will always be taking a risk to a degree, so if you are able to source that all important deposit and have found the perfect property then make the purchase. No one can predict if, or when, this bubble will burst, and you don’t want to wait around only to find you have missed your chance.”

"If the government wants to make housing more affordable – and avoid inflating another property bubble – then it needs to encourage more house building," said Richard Sexton, director of e.surv chartered surveyors. "There is a woeful shortfall in housing starts which is causing demand to gallop away from supply and drag house prices along with it. We need a sustainable market which is accessible to everyone, not just the equity-rich. A focus on the underperforming regions outside of London also may need to be considered if large parts of the country are not to be left behind."

Discover more property articles at Homes and Property
News
John Travolta is a qualified airline captain and employed the pilot with his company, Alto
people'That was the lowest I’d ever felt'
Life and Style
healthIt isn’t greasy. It doesn’t smell. And moreover, it costs nothing
News
peopleThe report and photo dedicated to the actress’s decolletage has, unsurprisingly, provoked anger
Property
Home body: Badger stays safe indoors
property
PROMOTED VIDEO
Arts and Entertainment
While many films were released, few managed to match the success of James Bond blockbuster 'Skyfall'
filmsDaniel Craig believed to be donning skis as 007 for first time
Sport
Mikel Arteta pictured during Borussia Dortmund vs Arsenal
champions league
Voices
Yes supporters gather outside the Usher Hall, which is hosting a Night for Scotland in Edinburgh
voicesBen Judah: Is there a third option for England and Scotland that keeps everyone happy?
Arts and Entertainment
Pulp-fiction lover: Jarvis Cocker
booksJarvis Cocker on Richard Brautigan
Arts and Entertainment
Robin Thicke and Pharell Williams in the video of the song, which has been accused of justifying rape
music...and he had 'almost no part' in writing it
Property search
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Senior QA Engineer - Agile, SCRUM

£35000 - £50000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Senior QA Engineer (Agil...

Marketing Executive - West Midlands - £28,000

£26000 - £28000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Digital Marketing Executive (SEO, PP...

Retail Business Analyst

£40000 - £50000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our retail client ...

Senior C++ Developer

£400 - £450 Per Annum possibly more for the right candidate: Clearwater People...

Day In a Page

Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week