UK house prices are continuing to grow at a rapid rate, as new data shows that they are moving closer to the level they were at when the market peaked in 2007. Mortgage approvals also appear to have risen.
In November alone, UK house prices rose by 0.6 per cent. This is part of a continual rise in the value of British property. Since November 2012, UK house prices have risen by 6.5 per cent.
This is being attributed to activity in the housing market increasing rapidly in the last six months of 2013. This rise of 6.5 per cent is the fastest the market has seen in the space of a year since July 2010.
This seems to indicate that the housing market is on its way back to the level it was at before the crash that occurred at the beginning of the global recession. The average price of a UK home is now £174,556, up from £173,678 in October, which is only six per cent off the price of property at the peak of the market in 2007.
Furthermore, Nationwide have reported that the number of mortgages for house purchases that they approved in September hit 66,735, which is 34 per cent higher than they sold in the same period of 2012.
If this can be taken as indicative of the market as a whole, it would seem to suggest that the UK public is beginning to lose its fear of buying property and making tentative steps away from the renting culture that has dominated the housing market for several years.
Robert Gardner, chief economist for Nationwide, said: “Activity in the housing market has picked up strongly in recent months.”
He attributed this to “further improvements in the labour market and the brighter economic outlook, which has helped to bolster sentiment amongst potential buyers”.
Mr Gardner added: “Policy measures aimed at keeping down the cost and improving the availability of credit are also playing an important role. Indeed, mortgage rates have declined significantly from the already low levels prevailing last year.”