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Camden house prices up 8 per cent in June despite snap election on the eve of Brexit

PUBLISHED: 15:00 19 June 2017

House prices fell across the UK for the first time in June for eight years as the economy suffers from political uncertainty and low pay growth

House prices fell across the UK for the first time in June for eight years as the economy suffers from political uncertainty and low pay growth

2013 Getty Images

Asking prices in the borough have remained buoyant despite the UK property market taking a knock on June prices for the first time since 2009 due to political uncertainty

The average price of a house coming to market in Camden is now £1,177,996, up 8 per cent from May, according to Rightmove’s latest House Price Index.

House prices in the borough are up 2.1 per cent year on year.

Local agents have been advising sellers to price ‘sensibly’ to attract buyer attention since September last year.

It is important to note that the Rightmove index records current asking prices rather than the amount at which properties are eventually sold.

Across London as a whole prices dropped by 2.4 per cent, the largest May to June fall since 2010.

Properties took on average 54 days to sell, down from a high of 71 in January this year.

Miles Shipside, Rightmove director commented: “With some sellers setting more tempting asking prices, and many being open to further drops to secure a sale, there is a pick – up in buyer activity compared to the same time a year ago.

“It’s all pretty marginal, and is also confused by 2016’s statistics being distorted by the stamp duty tax hike last April, but is an indicator of some stability.”

Across the UK prices fell by 0.4 per cent, a relatively small amount but significant in that June hasn’t recorded a drop in prices nationally for eight years.

Mr Shipside believes that the current political instability may also have proven a factor in this dip.

“Buyer confidence has clearly been affected by inflation outstripping their pay packets and current political event,” he added.

Emoov founder Russel Quirk concurred that the snap election and the resulting failure of the Conservative party to achieve a majority on the eve of Brexit has had a knock on effect on market confidence.

“Anyone that claims the political landscape has no direct impact on the UK housing market need only to look at the latest index from Rightmove to be told otherwise,” he said.

“Yes, the portals data may not provide the most concrete view of how the sector is performing due to the figures being based on asking price rather than completions, but it certainly gives us a flavour of the current buyer-seller market seesaw.”

Jeremy Duncombe, director of Legal & General Mortgage Club expressed concern at the continued lack of affordable housing, and urged the new government to make it a priority “once the dust has settled”.

“Although the data shows a minor decrease in monthly house price growth, on a year-on-year basis, house prices are still rising. Potential buyers are having to increase their borrowings, or depend on family members to help fund a deposit,” he said.

“For many workers, price increases are occurring at an unattainable rate, with house prices now at a record 7.6 times earnings. For London, this is stretched to more than 10 ten times.”

It is now increasingly difficult for buyers to save enough for a property in the capital without help from a parent or grandparent, with the Bank of Mum and Dad now registering as the ninth biggest mortgage lender in the UK.

Meanwhile regular pay growth has fallen to its lowest rate since October 2014, according to labour market data released by the Office of National Statistics last week, causing concern from economists.

Rising inflation and economic uncertainty combined with high levels of household debt means people are spending less.

Christian Jaccarini, an economist working for CEBR commented:

“Rising wages are an important contributor to consumption growth, a key driver of the UK’s performance in recent years – in fact, household consumption accounted for 62.5% of GDP in 2016 - so, a fall in wage growth does not bode well for UK growth.”

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