The cost of the average property in the UK last month was £294,260, according to Halifax’s records. 

That was a jump of 0.4 per cent on the previous month, but down 0.5 per cent on typical monthly prices rises. Annually the rate of growth has fallen from 11.8 per cent in July to 11.5 per cent in August. Having said that, property has still increased by £30,000 over the past 12 months. Over the past decade the price of your typical property has actually increased by an astounding 60 per cent.

Today’s slowing down and falling of average growth points very much to the cost of living crisis beginning to hit in the UK. Certainly, the country now expects to go in to recession soon. 

The Bank of England’s monetary policy committee is expected to raise interest rates again when it meets later this month. The current base rate is at 1.75 per cent – the highest since 2009 – and economists predict it will rise by another 0.5 per cent in September. This is in response to spiralling inflation, with some analysts fearing it could rise to more than 18 per cent by January 2023.  

Meanwhile, the energy cap rise is expected to reach £2,500 in October – hitting both householders and businesses (leading to unemployment fears). 

The increasing rise in mortgage interest repayments is prompting many in the property industry to advise re-mortgaging as soon as possible – before those monthly payments become unaffordable.

Barratt’s home reservations beneath pandemic levels

Even the country’s major housebuilder Barratt Developments said it expected house prices to fall. This was in response to a slowing down of the number of house reservations – to the extent it’s less than before the pandemic hit. 

In contrast to the expectation of falling house prices and a forthcoming recession, good news comes in the form of ‘digitalisation of the house buying and selling process.’

Land Registry to undergo ‘digital transformation’

Land Registry has announced plans to bring the process more up to date and fit for ‘a paperless and much more transparent society.’

Their three-year business plan focuses on five key areas – 

  • Secure and efficient land registration
  • Buying and selling of property to be achieved digitally
  • Providing real time information
  • Making digital register info more accessible
  • Work with the property market to look at innovation

In effect then all property applications to the Register are to become digital by the end of this year. The need for digitalisation of the buying and selling process was clear after it emerged it took 49 per cent longer to complete housing transactions last year than in 2007.

In terms of ‘real time information,’ Land Registry says all local land charge data will be online by 2026 while the Registry itself is to become ‘more accessible and easier to use.’

Timothy Douglas, Head of Policy and Campaigns at Propertymark, said: “The technological mindset of consumers has advanced considerably in recent years, and HM Land Registry’s 2022+ strategy compliments moves we are seeing in the sector to enhance and improve home buying and selling.”

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