House prices rise for sixth month running

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The Independent Online

House prices in England and Wales rose for the sixth month in a row during November, figures showed today.



The average cost of a property was £161,554, representing an increase of 0.9 per cent during the month, according to the Land Registry.

The rate at which prices are falling year-on-year slowed for the seventh consecutive month, easing to 0.3 per cent, the lowest since the annual declines began in June 2008 and a much slighter dip than the 3.4 per cent seen in October.

But the figures showed the number of homes changing hands was slightly lower in September, the latest month for which data is available, after August saw the end of a six-month run of rising sales levels.

There were 53,482 transactions during the month, compared with 55,270 in August, and while the figure is 30 per cent higher than September 2008 it represents around half of the number seen in the same period in 2007.

All regions in England except for the West Midlands experienced house price rises during November, while Wales experienced the biggest monthly increase of 2.9 per cent.

In London, prices grew 2 per cent over the month, bringing the average cost of a property to £324,231.

An apparent north/south divide has emerged in the housing market over recent months and this seems to be reinforced by the annual price change figures.

London, the East, South East and South West have all seen an increase in average property values over the last 12 months.

Prices in London were 3.5 per cent higher than November 2008 - the greatest increase among the regions - while the South East saw a 2 per cent gain.

Meanwhile, Yorkshire and Humber saw the biggest slump in average home values in 12 months, by 4.7 per cent, the West Midlands fell 3.5 per cent and the North West declined 3.2 per cent.

But the picture among London's boroughs is also mixed, with Westminster enjoying a 3.5 per cent annual rise, while Barking and Dagenham dropped 18.1 per cent.

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