UK House Price Index: April 2019

Monthly house price inflation in the UK, calculated using data from HM Land Registry, Registers of Scotland and Land and Property Services Northern Ireland.

This is not the latest release. View latest release

This is an accredited national statistic.

Contact:
Email Rhys Lewis

Release date:
19 June 2019

Next release:
17 July 2019

1. Introduction

This is a high-level summary of the UK House Price Index (HPI). For full details, including commentary, historical data tables and analytical tools, please see the main publication of the House Price Index, published today (9:30am, 19 June 2019) by HM Land Registry on the GOV.UK website.

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2. Things you need to know about this release

The Office for Statistics Regulation designated the UK House Price Index as a National Statistic on 18 September 2018. A letter from the Director General for Regulation details the actions that were taken to meet the requirements as set out in the UK HPI assessment report.

House price inflation is the rate at which the prices of residential properties purchased in the UK rise and fall. The UK House Price Index (HPI) is a joint production by HM Land Registry, Land and Property Services Northern Ireland, the Office for National Statistics and Registers of Scotland.

The UK HPI includes all residential properties purchased for market value in the UK. However, as sales only appear in the UK HPI once the purchases have been registered, there can be a delay before transactions feed into the index. As such, caution is advised when interpreting price changes in the most recent periods as they can be revised. Further information is provided in our revision policy.

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3. UK annual house price growth slows in April 2019

Average house prices in the UK increased by 1.4% in the year to April 2019, down from 1.6% in March 2019 (Figure 1). Over the past three years, there has been a general slowdown in UK house price growth, driven mainly by a slowdown in the south and east of England.

The lowest annual growth was in London, where prices fell by 1.2% over the year to April 2019, up from a fall of 2.5% in March 2019.

The average UK house price was £229,000 in April 2019. This is £3,000 higher than the same period a year ago (April 2018) (Figure 2). On a non-seasonally adjusted basis, average house prices in the UK increased by 0.7% between March 2019 and April 2019, compared with a rise of 1.0% in average prices during the same period a year earlier (March 2018 and April 2018). On a seasonally adjusted basis, average house prices in the UK decreased by 0.2% between March 2019 and April 2019 (series available in data downloads).

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4. How do growth rates compare at the country level?

House price growth in Wales increased by 6.7% in the year to April 2019, up from 3.9% in March 2019, with the average house price at £164,000. This strengthening in the annual growth rate for Wales is due to both strong growth between March and April 2019 (2.4%) and falling prices (0.3%) between March and April 2018. Falling prices between March and April 2018 may be linked to Land Transaction Tax (LTT) replacing UK Stamp Duty Land Tax in Wales (SDLT) from April 2018.

Land Transaction Tax is broadly consistent with SDLT, however, the residential tax rates differ. Generally, for transactions between £125,000 and £400,000, LTT is lower than SDLT and from £400,000 it is higher than SDLT. Therefore, for relatively lower-priced properties, the tax would have been lower if the transaction was delayed until April 2018, being liable for LTT. For relatively higher-priced properties, the tax would have been lower if the transaction was brought forward from April 2018, being liable for SDLT instead. A combination of these effects is likely to have lowered prices between March 2018 and April 2018.

The average house price in England increased by 1.1% over the year to April 2019, down slightly from 1.3% in March 2019, with the average house price in England now £245,000. House prices in Scotland increased by 1.6% in the year to April 2019, down from 3.5% in the year to March 2019, with the average house price in Scotland now £151,000.

Northern Ireland house prices increased by 3.5% over the year to Quarter 1 (Jan to Mar) 2019. Northern Ireland remains the cheapest UK country to purchase a property in, with the average house price at £135,000 (Figure 3).

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5. Strongest English growth in the North of England and the Midlands

The East Midlands was the English region with the highest annual growth, with prices increasing by 2.9% in the year to April 2019. This was followed by the North West, with prices increasing by 2.6%.

The lowest annual growth was in London (Figure 4), where prices fell by 1.2% over the year to April 2019, up from a fall of 2.5% in March 2019. This was followed by the South East, where prices fell by 0.8% over the year.

While London house prices fell over the year, the area remains the most expensive place to purchase a property at an average of £472,000, followed by the South East and the East of England, at £319,000 and £289,000 respectively. The North East continued to have the lowest average house price at £131,000 and is the only English region yet to surpass its pre-economic downturn peak (Figure 5).

Data at the local authority level and other breakdowns can be found in the main publication of the UK House Price Index published by HM Land Registry on GOV.UK.

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6. Quality and methodology

Details of the methodology used to calculate the UK House Price Index (UK HPI) can be found on the guidance page of the main release published by HM Land Registry on GOV.UK.

The UK House Price Index (HPI) Quality and Methodology Information report contains important information on:

  • the strengths and limitations of the data and how it compares with related data
  • uses and users of the data
  • how the output was created
  • the quality of the output including the accuracy of the data
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Contact details for this Statistical bulletin

Rhys Lewis
hpi@ons.gov.uk
Telephone: +44 (0)1633 456400

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