LONDON, June 19 Asking prices for British houses
and apartments fell in June, the first decline in the month
since 2009, led by drops in the London area as wage growth
slowed and political uncertainty rose, property website
Rightmove said on Monday.
The figures are based on property advertised between May 14
and June 10, covering mostly the final weeks before a June 8
national election which saw Prime Minister Theresa May
unexpectedly lose her parliamentary majority.
Rightmove said average asking prices for property sold on
its website dropped 0.4 percent in June, normally a month which
sees a seasonal price rise, after rising 1.2 percent in May.
"The price of property coming to the market had increased in
June in every year since 2009, so buyers' confidence has clearly
been affected by inflation outstripping their pay packets and
current political events," Rightmove director Miles Shipside
May has so far been unable to secure support for her
Conservative Party from its most likely parliamentary ally,
Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party.
Figures last week showed consumer price inflation jumped to
its highest in nearly four years at 2.9 percent in May -
squeezing households' disposable income - while wage growth has
In a move likely to make prospective home-buyers' even
warier, three of the Bank of England's eight policymakers voted
to raise interest rates last week, the closest the central bank
has come to increasing borrowing costs since 2007.
Prices in most of England and Wales rose, Rightmove said,
but a 2.4 percent drop in London plus smaller declines in parts
of central and southeastern England, weighed on the overall
Compared with a year earlier, asking prices across Britain
were 1.8 percent higher, the smallest annual increase since
Other house price measures have also shown price rises
levelling off since Britain voted to leave the European Union
almost a year ago.
Mortgage lender Nationwide reported three successive monthly
falls in house prices for the first time since 2009, while rival
Halifax says annual growth is the lowest since 2013.
Rightmove says more than 90 percent of British estate agents
use its website to advertise property.
(Reporting by David Milliken)