Bloomberg News

More Britons Expect House-Price Drop Next Year, Halifax Says

November 01, 2011

Nov. 1 (Bloomberg) -- Britons’ confidence in the housing market has fallen, with more consumers forecasting price declines than increases in the next year, a survey by Halifax showed.

A gauge of the housing market measuring price expectations fell to minus 2 from 9 in April, Halifax, the mortgage unit of Lloyds Banking Group Plc, said in an e-mailed statement in London today. Thirty percent predict prices will fall over the next 12 months, with 28 percent forecasting increases, according to the survey.

“It is unsurprising that confidence in the housing market has been shaken a little over the last few months given the increasing uncertainty about the current economic environment, together with pressure on householders’ finances,” Halifax economist Martin Ellis said in the statement. “We expect little change in both prices and activity over the next few months.”

Halifax said that more than a quarter of the 1,986 people surveyed between Oct. 7 and Oct. 13 forecast that house prices will be unchanged in a year’s time.

A report by Hometrack Ltd. yesterday showed house prices fell for a sixth month in October, while a gauge of property demand declined for a third month. Prices were down 0.2 percent on the month and the company said the pace of decline may accelerate in the coming months. Values based on its gauge have fallen every month except one since July 2010.

--Editors: Fergal O’Brien, Eddie Buckle

To contact the reporter on this story: Svenja O’Donnell in London at sodonnell@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Craig Stirling at cstirling1@bloomberg.net


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