House prices grow amid calls for more BTL building
The average UK house price has increased by 4.9 per cent in the year to June - down from 5.0 per cent in the year to May - the latest data and analysis from ONS has shown.
According to the figures, the average UK house price was £223,000 in June - £10,000 higher than in June 2016 and £2,000 higher than last month. The overall increase was boosted by England, where house prices rose by 5.2 per cent over the year to June 2017, with the average price in England now £240,000.
Wales saw house prices increase by 3.6 per cent over the last year to stand at £152,000.
In Scotland, the average price increased by 2.9 per cent over the past 12 months to reach £144,000.
The average price in Northern Ireland currently stands at £129,000, an increase of 4.4 per cent over the year to Quarter 2 (April to June) 2017.
London is still the region with the highest average house price at £482,000, followed by the South East and the East of England, which stand at £320,000 and £287,000 respectively. The lowest average price continues to be in the North East at £130,000.
John Goodall, CEO of BTL specialist Landbay, said the figures suggest that house price growth has now returned.
"Supply and demand remain severely out of kilter, meaning that housing affordability remains one of the most pressing issues facing UK society over the medium to long term," he said.
"The roots of the affordability crisis can be traced back to insufficient construction over the past decade, but a number of other macroeconomic factors are now also playing a part.
"Wage growth is struggling to keep pace with rocketing inflation, which is hitting people’s pockets and making it harder for aspiring homeowners to afford their first property, as well as discouraging existing homeowners from moving.
"This is pushing more and more people toward the private rental sector to house them while they save, so construction needs to focus not only on more affordable homes for first time buyers, but for the rental sector as well.”
Paul Smith, CEO of haart, said the Government 'must stop excessive profiteering at the plight of the aspiring home owner and cut the stamp duty stealth tax'.
"Unless we see a more comprehensive break for first-time buyers, the UK’s legacy as a property-owning democracy is at risk of vanishing,” he said.