United Kingdom: House prices rebound in July
According to the Nationwide Building Society (NBS), house prices in the United Kingdom rose 1.7% month-on-month in July, contrasting June’s 1.6% decline. The rise was driven by an easing of Covid-19 lockdown measures boosting housing activity. On an annual basis, house prices were up 1.5% (June: -0.1% year-on-year). The average house price in July was GBP 220,936 (July 2019: GBP 217,663).
In the next few months, pent-up demand could continue to support prices. That said, Robert Gardner, chief economist at Nationwide, cautioned that the more positive picture may not last:
“There is a risk this proves to be something of a false dawn. Most forecasters expect labour market conditions to weaken significantly in the quarters ahead as a result of the aftereffects of the pandemic and as government support schemes wind down. If this comes to pass, it would likely dampen housing activity once again in the quarters ahead.”