2 Oct

Long-term housing prospects 'remain strong'

Long-term housing prospects 'remain strong'

Nationwide Building Society has said that the long-term prospects for the UK housing market remain positive.

The lender made the comments despite recording a 1.7 per cent fall in house prices across the UK in September in its latest index.

It said that the recent "turmoil" in the financial markets meant that it was "not surprising" that prices dropped during last month.

While this is not about to change imminently, however, the longer term prospect remains "more sound", it stated.

Nationwide chief economist Fionnuala Earley also suggested that the rate of price falls may suggest some "stabilisation" in the trend and noted that for some people lower prices would be good news, as this will mean greater affordability.

The lender also produced figures for the third quarter of 2008, which showed that prices in the north of England are performing better than those in the south for the first time since 2005, as the three northern English regions displayed the smallest price drops.

Such a trend echoes the findings of the August Land Registry figures, which revealed the largest house price falls occurring in the southern and eastern parts of England, while the north-west saw a 1.2 per cent price rise.

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