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News: London house prices holding steady

Mon, 11 Aug 08

A second report within a week indicates that things may not be as bad in the capital as some commentators claim.

The latest FT House Price Index has reported that prices dropped by just 0.3% in July. Although this is the fifth consecutive decline, the figures represent a much gentler slide than is being reported by the mortgage and property companies that provide similar reports.

Widely seen as one of the most accurate housing market reports, due largely to its strong correlation with figures reported 3 months in arrears by the Land Registry, the FT index tracks completed sales, adjusted to reflect the mix of housing across the country.

According to the FT Index, compiled by research company Acadametrics, some areas in the capital are still seeing strong annualized growth. Camden leads the way on this front, with gains of around 17.5% year on year. At the other end of the scale, however, prices in the City fell by nearly as much, with a drop of 14.7%.

Outside London, the trends are equally mixed. In fact, half the regions in the report show annualized gains over the last three months, with some pockets seeing double digit growth even throughout what is undoubtedly a gloomy period for the property market. Windsor, Maidenhead and to a lesser extent Northumberland and Buckinghamshire have all been pretty buoyant, and prices there continue to buck the trend seen in less sought-after locations.

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