House prices rise 4.1% in last year - but fall monthly for fourth consecutive time

The latest house price index show finds that house prices are slowing

keyring with keys, a small house and red price tag on turquoise colored background
(Image credit: © Getty images)

The value of the average property in the UK rose 4.1% in the 12 months to March 2023, adding £11,000 to a typical home, according to the latest ONS house price index.

But on a monthly basis, property prices have fallen for the fourth consecutive time, decreasing 1.2% in March 2023, following a fall of 0.1% in February 2023. This could be further indication that house prices could finally come down further in 2023.

It means that the average value of a UK property now stands at £285,000. That’s down from a recent peak of £293,369 in November 2022.

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Average house prices from 2005 to 2023

(Image credit: Office for National Statistics)

Where are house prices rising the fastest?

There are regional differences too: The average price in England was £304,000, up 4.1%, while in Wales it was £214,000 and up 4.8%. Meanwhile, prices rose 3% to £185,000 in Scotland and 5% to £172,000 in Northern Ireland.

In England, the highest annual increase was in the South West, up 5.4%, while London’s house prices only rose 1.5%.

London annual house price percentage change by region

(Image credit: Office for National Statistics)

The annual price increase is a considerable slowdown from July last year when the cost of a property had soared 14.4% in just 12 months.

The ONS said that there had been some 89,560 residential house purchases last month, nearly 19% lower than a year earlier, but up slightly by 1.3% from February.

“Rising interest rates and economic pressures have not stood in the way of many buyers or sellers’ ambitions as the housing market shows strong resilience and house prices rise in March,” said Emma Cox, managing director of real estate at Shawbrook Bank.

“And while buyers are likely to remain relatively cautious moving forward, as mortgage rates remain high in line with rising interest rates, it’s encouraging to see these signs of optimism back in the market.

“The well-documented lack of supply within the rental market could prompt professional landlords to snap up properties and expand their rental portfolios before any further price rises.

“This should help to provide an injection of quality stock, with demand currently being starved of good, available properties for renters.”

Katie Binns

Katie Binns is an award-winning journalist, and former Sunday Times writer where she spent 10 years covering news, culture, travel, personal finance and celebrity interviews. She has also written for the Times, Telegraph, i paper and Woman and Home magazine.

Her investigative work on financial abuse has examined the response of banks, the Financial Ombudsman and the child maintenance service to victims, and resulted in a number of debt and mortgage prisoners being set free.