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Money Week: How Much Further Will Uk House Prices Fall?

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A friend has forwarded me an email he got from "Money Morning", pasted below.

Or ( thanks to GBSMF ) : Linky

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How much further will UK house prices fall?

By David Stevenson. 3 February, 2011

We’ve seen two very different sides of the UK economy this week.

Britain’s manufacturers are going from strength to strength. According to the latest surveys, activity is growing at its fastest rate since records began 19 years ago. Even the construction industry bounced back in January. The weather got better and Britain’s builders also saw more new business.

But then there’s the UK housing market. Here the news wasn’t so good, as we’ll see below. And what’s more, it could be about to get some way worse...

House prices are falling

Tuesday’s house price figures from Nationwide could have been worse. House prices fell by 0.1% over the month of January. Experts had been expecting a 0.4% fall.

But this still means that year-on-year, UK house prices are now falling again. Last month the price of the average UK house (if there is such a thing) was 1.1% lower than it was in January 2010. That’s the first negative reading from Nationwide since August 2009. And it’s part of a developing trend, as the chart below shows:

MM%20030211_1.gif

This chart shows the latest year-on-year changes not just for the Nationwide survey, but also for the indices compiled by the Halifax, Hometrack and Rightmove, not to mention the official figures from the DCLG (the Department for Communities and Local Government).

They all tell the same tale. Annual house price changes tend to move in very well defined swings. And right now, the overall trend is clearly down.

What's going to happen to house prices next?

The big question now is, with other parts of the economy picking up, what’s going to happen to UK house prices next?

Well, it’s great news for the country that our factories are doing so well. But the snag is that our manufacturing sector has shrunk so much relative to the rest of the UK economy. These days it accounts for less than 13% of the overall economy.

Consumer spending, by contrast, accounts for around two-thirds of GDP. And the latest signals on this score are pretty gloomy. Britons’ confidence both in the economy overall and their finances in particular has just suffered its biggest drop in almost 20 years, according to last week’s GFK/NOP survey.

It may have taken time for people to cotton on. But now they’re really starting to fret about the damage the government’s looming austerity cuts – and more importantly perhaps, the tax hikes - will do to their wallets. (See Merryn Somerset Webb's blog: The middle class is being squeezed out of existence.) The net result could hit housing hard.

As Merryn pointed out recently in her blog: The house price falls for 2011 have only just begun, the level of house prices depends heavily on how much credit is available. And we’ve already seen big warning signs on this front.

Last week’s Bank of England stats showed something almost unheard of. The net amount of money, ie after repayments, advanced on UK houses actually dropped in December – by £300m. In other words, as a nation, we repaid a bit of our national mortgage bill, rather than taking out more debt.

Indeed, for 2010 overall, net lending fell by a massive 28% compared with the previous year. Further, home loan approvals – a key guide to future house buying – fell in December by 10%. That’s a clear sign of dropping demand.

Why “pent-up” demand will stay pent up

But what about first-time buyers (FTBs)? There are always loads of surveys telling us how many FTBs would dearly love to get on the property ladder – all that ‘pent-up’ demand that estate agents love to blather about.

Trouble is, it’s one thing to want to buy a house. It’s quite another to persuade someone to lend you enough money, even if you can scrape together a big enough deposit. Although the banks keep making a song and dance about how much money they’re lending, the truth is that it’s not happening. “Although lenders’ windows may be full of ‘best buy’ deals, it doesn’t mean they’re willing to lend”, says Michelle Slade at Moneyfacts.co.uk.

Add this all up, and for 2011 the Council for Mortgage Lenders – a body which is hardly keen on talking prices down – is forecasting net lending of just £6bn. That would be a staggering 95% plunge from the market peak in 2007.

Against that backdrop, it’s very hard to see how house prices can do anything but fall further – particularly as the supply of property could be about to rise sharply. For a long while, estate agents were complaining they just didn’t have enough houses to sell. That’s very unlikely to be the case looking forward.

For one thing, government cutbacks could mean more job losses, while those tax hikes will squeeze incomes. That’s likely to mean more selling – some of it forced – into a market that won’t be able to cope with it.

Further – and I’m not making a prediction on the timing here – Britain’s bank rate must go up at some stage from its current 0.5% record low. Inflation is getting worse – the CPI (consumer price index) is already 3.7% and rising fast.

You might think higher CPI would be good news for house prices. In fact the reverse is true. As and when Britain’s rising cost of living finally pushes up interest rates, the cost of home loans will be driven up. The latter could even start to climb before a bank rate hike.

That’s hardly likely to attract more house buyers – and could well mean many more sellers.

The chart below proves this point. Apart from in early-2010, when there was a surprise rebound in the cost of living, consumer and house price inflation have moved in opposite directions. With CPI set to soar yet higher, the writing is on the wall for UK property values

MM%20030211_2.gif

So how far will prices fall from here?

On our website we track several indicators that we reckon are the best early warning signs on the UK housing market. Apart from home loan approvals and consumer confidence, there’s the RICS price balance survey. There’s also a comparison with the share price of Carpetright, Europe’s leading floor covering retailer.

The way things currently look, each measure implies at least an extra 5% price fall from here. Some suggest an even bigger drop. You can see all these charts – and find out what they mean – here: http://www.moneyweek.com/news-and-charts/economic-indicators/uk-house-prices.aspx?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Money%2BMorning

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Edited by Tired of Waiting

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This year's 'spring bounce' is psychologically vital for setiment IMO. As those of us in the know can see, sales and prices (except asking prices) are going to do anything but bounce. This will, I reckon, be the final nail in the coffin for those who have been holding out for a return to 2007 prices. Expect the floodgates of pent-up supply, re accidental landlords, BTLers in trouble etc, to open soon after as reality, finally, sinks in.

Edited by rantnrave

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This year's 'spring bounce' is psychologically vital for setiment IMO. As those of us in the know can see, sales and prices (except asking prices) are going to do anything but bounce. This will, I reckon, be the final nail in the coffin for those who have been holding out for a return to 2007 prices. Expect the floodgates of pent-up supply, re accidental landlords, BTLers in trouble etc, to open soon after as reality, finally, sinks in.

I think you're right in terms of no spring bounce, but I think it will take the end of spring for sellers to understand that, which means that it won't be until post-summer holidays that prices will start coming down in earnest.

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I think you're right in terms of no spring bounce, but I think it will take the end of spring for sellers to understand that, which means that it won't be until post-summer holidays that prices will start coming down in earnest.

I agree, to a certain extent. However, looking at the data of pervious years, when prices are already heading down, figures for February seem to show especially large drops.

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The way things currently look, each measure implies at least an extra 5% price fall from here. Some suggest an even bigger drop.

<_<

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From that moneyweek chart cpi/house price % change if inflation is heading towards 4-5% it looks as if a drop in house prices of 10-20% is well on the cards over the next year or so.

A 5% fall in the near future looks an absolute minimum.

Edited by billybong

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Look out below!

Oh, thats us isn't it!

Better find a good solid tin hat, don't want to be hit by a falling house price, nasty things those.

That historical annual house price chart has a nice downward saw tooth to it, suggests the next trough will be very low indeed and the subsequent peak will be lucky to reach back to zero! Unless it breaks out of course!

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I went and viewed a house last week. This meant I had to register with an EA.

I am fully expecting that next month the Swansea interested buyers figure will have doubled :blink:

The vultures are beginning to circle--I am also registered now. I am not the most popular customer though as I am such a purveyor of doom and it depresses the staff. :D

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I think you're right in terms of no spring bounce, but I think it will take the end of spring for sellers to understand that, which means that it won't be until post-summer holidays that prices will start coming down in earnest.

It could be, but there are sellers at all "levels of understanding" - from a minority, whose pence have fully dropped, to a majority still deluded. But we do have now a small minority that is full aware of deep and permanent HPrice drops, and these will be the first to lower their prices - as much as necessary, to sell ASAP.

I fully agree that this is a small minority, but it will be this small minority that will sell, and set the new (reduced) price levels, triggering the

cascade, or domino thingy.

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I agree, to a certain extent. However, looking at the data of pervious years, when prices are already heading down, figures for February seem to show especially large drops.

That is interesting. :) It matches with my little theory in the post above.

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Lovely chart, shows the YoY changes longer term and for more indices.

Better than this BBC one:

_51062316_house_prices_jan464x304.gif

Thanks for posting.

MM%20030211_1.gif

It is nice. And the trend! Each peak is lower than the one before, and each bottom is lower than the one before. If this trend continues, we will have annual falls greater than the 2009's!

(You're welcome.)

EDIT: And this with 0.5% base rate. Imagine what will happen when rates go back up!

Edited by Tired of Waiting

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From that moneyweek chart cpi/house price % change if inflation is heading towards 4-5% it looks as if a drop in house prices of 10-20% is well on the cards over the next year or so.

That graph of cpi to hpi..... is pure p0rn..... hubba hubba :D

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This sums it up:

There are always loads of surveys telling us how many FTBs would dearly love to get on the property ladder – all that ‘pent-up’ demand that estate agents love to blather about.

Trouble is, it’s one thing to want to buy a house. It’s quite another to persuade someone to lend you enough money, even if you can scrape together a big enough deposit.

Edited by exiges

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That is interesting. :) It matches with my little theory in the post above.

Just noticed the very unfortunate typo in my post that you replied to. Might leave it uncorrected for others' entertainment.

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This sums it up:

Yep. Most people still confuse need with demand. Without money there is no demand, even if the need exists. It is as absurd as to say that in those African famines there is a "pent-up demand" for food! :rolleyes: No, there is no demand because they don't have any money. They can't afford food. That is the whole problem!

Here there is no demand for houses at current price levels because most people can't afford to buy houses at current price levels! It is not rocket science, is it?!

:angry:

BTW, I blame mainly the BBC for all this basic ignorance regarding markets in Britain. Those BBC b@stards don't get markets at all! Basic stuff.

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Yep. Most people still confuse need with demand. Without money there is no demand, even if the need exists. It is as absurd as to say that in those African famines there is a "pent-up demand" for food! :rolleyes: No, there is no demand because they don't have any money. They can't afford food. That is the whole problem!

Here there is no demand for houses at current price levels because most people can't afford to buy houses at current price levels! It is not rocket science, is it?!

:angry:

BTW, I blame mainly the BBC for all this basic ignorance regarding markets in Britain. Those BBC b@stards don't get markets at all! Basic stuff.

Soon the digital switchover will be complete and maybe they can put a bit more of our money into some digital property channels!

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  • 312 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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