U.K. House Prices Fell Again in February, Lender Halifax Says
(Bloomberg) -- U.K. house prices fell for a second month in February during a national lockdown to control the coronavirus, the mortgage lender Halifax said.
The 0.1% drop last month follows an 0.3% decline in January and brought the annual pace of house price inflation to 5.2%. The figures contrast with an index from Nationwide Building Society showing the value of homes increased unexpectedly last month.
Buyers boosted prices last year after the Treasury granted a temporary break on taxes for purchases, a measure that earlier this week was extended until the end of June. That helped offset headwinds from the deepest economic slump in three centuries and a surge in unemployment.
“Having enjoyed an extremely strong period of activity in the second half of last year, the housing market continued its softer start to 2021,” Russell Galley, managing director of Halifax, said in a statement. “The housing market has been at something of a crossroads at the start of this year.”
“We would not expect the level of growth seen in house prices over the past year
to be sustained throughout 2021,” he said.
The average home now costs 251,697 pounds ($292,275).
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