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House prices, as measured by the UK House Price Index, increased by 5.4% between October 2019 and October 2020. On a seasonally adjusted basis house prices increased by 0.9% between September 2020 and October 2020.

House prices grew at different rates across the UK’s countries and regions over the year to October 2020. House prices grew by 6.6% in East Midlands, North West and Yorkshire & the Humber, respectively. Growth was slowest in London at 3.9%, East of England at 3.4% and Northern Ireland at 2.4%, although Northern Ireland’s data is for growth in the year to Q3 2020. 

UK house price index

Bank of England data on the number of mortgages approved to finance house purchases are a leading indicator of house sales. 

Mortgage approvals exceeded 100,000 in November 2020. Approvals last exceeded 100,000 in August 2007. Mortgage approvals had fallen to a record low in May 2020 as a result of the lockdown designed to slow the spread of coronavirus. There were 104,969 mortgage approvals in November 2020, compared with 65,199 in November 2019.

UK mortgage approvals

Housing starts and completions fell sharply in Q2 2020 reflecting the coronavirus lockdown.

There were 35,710 house building starts (seasonally adjusted) in England in Q3 2020, a 111% increase compared with the previous quarter, but an 8% decrease compared with the same quarter of 2019. Starts remain below the peak of 48,850 in Q1 2007.

There were 45,000 house building completions (seasonally adjusted) in England in Q3 2020, a 185% increase compared with the previous quarter, but a 1% decrease compared with the same quarter of 2019. Completions remain below the peak of 48,440 completions in Q1 2007.

Housing starts and completions


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