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Annual house price growth hits 10.5%

A report by the Nationwide today shows that UK house prices increased by 10.5% in the 12 months to the end of April. The average price of a home in the UK is now £167,802 with a 1% increase in prices during April helping to boost the overall figure. While the increase of 10.5% is welcome and fairly impressive it does come against a backdrop of one of the weaker months from April 2009.

The Nationwide report is relatively upbeat on the UK property market although there is a warning that house price inflation is unlikely to remain in double-digit figures in the coming months. Concern regarding the economy, the employment market, the election and a lack of liquidity in the mortgage market is still holding back many buyers. We are also likely to see an increase in sellers in the coming months as the financial squeeze created by the recession continues to impact upon the ability of many home owners in the UK to cover their mortgage payments.

Many of the recent property market surveys have given mixed signals, highlighting the very fragile nature of the recovery in not only the property market but the UK economy as a whole. There is the potential for a freeze in debt markets within Europe which would increase the cost of finance for mortgage companies and ultimately homebuyers.

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