Highest house sales for seven years

House sales have recovered to their highest level since the financial crisis, a new report suggests.  

An annual average price increase of 9.9 per cent, or 4.6 per cent when London and the South East are excluded, was revealed in the latest LSL house price index.

The average house price climbed by 0.6 per cent in July to £270,636, while the capital’s average price sits at £560,386, a two per cent increase from June.

LSL commercial director David Brown said: “London and the South East have seen the slowest growth in house sales between Q2 2013 and Q2 2014.

In these areas, limited availability of property is impacting sales.

“Elsewhere, lower prices and the stimulus of Help to Buy are aiding activity.”

The biggest boost in sales from April-June 2014 was found in the North West and East Midlands, both of which increased by a third (32 per cent) on the same period last year.

Although London saw a dip in prices, the index found that 24 boroughs have set new peak prices, with the average house prices in Kensington and Chelsea average on track to surpass £2million.

Mr Brown added: “A dampening of sales activity and more supply starting to come to the market will help control house price inflation in London.”

The impact of the Mortgage Market Review in April appears to have been temporary, as July saw 90,000 property sales, the highest monthly total sales for almost seven years and a 10 per cent increase since June this year, and a 21 per cent rise on July 2013.

Excluding London, the South East and East Midlands,prices fell and remained stable across all other seven regions in June.

Mr Brown said: “A more thoughtful and prudent housing market is emerging. Lending is stabilising to sustainable levels, and supply and demand is more balanced. Further interventions or tighter rules could fracture the health of the recovery.”

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