House Price IndexThe Halifax House Price Index for April 2013 see and increase of 1.3% over the three months to April 2013, more than in the previous three months.

They also report a 3rd subsequent monthly rise of the average house price, the largest move being in April.

Key facts

  • Average house price increased by 1.1% in April following a rise of 0.5% in February and 0.4% in March
  • Average house price now stands at £166,094
  • House prices in the latest three months (February-April) were 1.3% higher than in the previous three months (November 2012-January 2013). This was the fifth consecutive increase in this measure and was slightly higher than the 1.2% rise recorded last month.
  • Prices in the three months to April were 2.0% higher than in the same three months a year earlier. This was the fourth consecutive rise in this annual measure with a pick-up from 1.1% in March, to the highest rate of increase since September 2010 (2.6%).
  • Activity still subdued. The number of mortgage approvals for house purchases – a leading indicator of completed house sales – increased by 3% between February and March following two successive monthly falls. Overall, approvals in the first three months of 2013 were 1% lower than in the previous three months (Source: Bank of England, seasonally-adjusted figures).

April 2013 House Price Index

Commenting, Martin Ellis, housing economist, said:

“House prices continue to pick up gradually. Prices in the three months to April 2013 were 1.3% higher than in the preceding three months, marking the fifth consecutive increase in house prices on this measure. The relatively low level of mortgage payments in relation to income continues to provide support for the market. “Market activity, however, remains subdued by historical standards with the number of mortgage approvals for house purchases – a leading indicator of completed house sales – easing slightly in the first quarter of 2013, according to the latest industry-wide figures. “Weak income growth and continuing below-trend economic growth are likely to remain significant constraints on housing demand during the remainder of 2013.”

The relatively low level of mortgage payments in relation to income provides support for house prices. Mortgage payments for a new borrower remain significantly below the long-term average as a proportion of disposable earnings. Typical mortgage payments for a new borrower – both first-time buyers and homemovers – at the long-term average loan to value ratio, have nearly halved as a proportion of disposable earnings from a peak of 48% in 2007 Quarter 3 to 28% in 2013 Quarter 1. This is significantly below the average of 36% recorded since 1984