April house prices hit record high

The average house asking price increased 2.1% to £244,706 in April according to Rightmove property website, setting a new record for the time of year.

The biggest increase in house prices was seen in East Anglia where the typical asking price rose to 4.4% to £224,538.

The only area to see a decrease in prices was London where average house price fell by 0.5% to £493,635.  Even with this decrease however, prices were still 6% higher than they were a year ago.

The figures prompted agents to predict further growth for May and renewed activity in the market this year.  Rightmove’s director Miles Shipside added;

“This should not be confused with an overall market recovery, as while spring may be here the ongoing chill of the recession is still in the air.  However it is true to say that more estate agents are reporting more activity in more segments of the market.”

According to Ernst & Young more than a million people are expected to move house this year, as the Government’s Funding for Lending scheme makes it easier for prospective buyers to gain access to mortgage funds.

Chief economic adviser Peter Spencer said;

“Real incomes are already starting to recover, mortgages are becoming more readily available and homes are more affordable as the house price to earnings ratio continues to fall.”

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