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House prices end sluggish year unmoved in December, says Nationwide

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House prices end sluggish year unmoved in December, says Nationwide By Proactive Investors

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Published Dec 29, 2023 07:33
Updated Dec 29, 2023 07:40

© Reuters. House prices end sluggish year unmoved in December, says Nationwide

Proactive Investors – UK house prices edged lower in 2023, confounding predictions for a sharp downturn, figures from one of the UK’s largest mortgage lenders showed.

Nationwide Building Society (LON:NBS) said house prices fell 1.8% from a year ago in December to £257,443, much less than the 10% decline many economists had predicted a year ago.

In December, house prices were unchanged, Nationwide said.

Robert Gardner, Nationwide’s chief economist, said there were some reasons for hope in 2024 although a sharp rebound in house prices was unlikely.

“Investors have become more optimistic that the Bank of England has already raised rates far enough to return inflation to target and will reduce rates in the years ahead,” he said.

“Nevertheless, a rapid rebound in activity or house prices in 2024 appears unlikely.”

“While cost-of-living pressures are easing, with the rate of inflation now running below the rate of average wage growth, consumer confidence remains weak and surveyors continue to report subdued levels of new buyer enquiries.”

“If the economy remains sluggish and mortgage rates moderate only gradually, as we expect, house prices are likely to record another small decline or remain broadly flat (perhaps 0 to -2%) over the course of 2024,” he added.

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House prices end sluggish year unmoved in December, says Nationwide

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