Latest data released by UK Nationwide Building Society - 30 April 2021

  • Prior -0.2%
  • House prices +7.1% vs +5.0% y/y expected
  • Prior +5.7%

The data is released earlier than estimated, was supposed to be for the top of the hour.

The headline reading is the biggest month-on-month increases since February 2004, with the average price of dwellings increasing from £232,134 in March to £238,831 in April - which represents a new record high in terms of average house prices.

Nationwide notes that annual growth in house prices will reach double digits in June even if prices are flat over the next two months. Adding that:

"Annual house price growth accelerated to 7.1% in April, only slightly below the peak of 7.3% recorded in December and up from 5.7% in March. In month-on-month terms, house prices rose by 2.1% in April, after taking account of seasonal effects, the biggest month rise since February 2004.

"Just as expectations of the end of the stamp duty holiday led to a slowdown in house price growth in March, so the extension of the stamp duty holiday in the Budget prompted a reacceleration in April.

"However, our research suggests that while the stamp duty holiday is impacting the timing of housing transactions, for most people it is not the key motivating factor prompting them to move in the first place. For example, amongst homeowners surveyed at the end of April 1 that were either moving home or considering a move, three quarters said this would have been the case even if the stamp duty holiday had not been extended."

"Further ahead, the outlook for the market is far more uncertain. If unemployment rises sharply towards the end of the year as most analysts expect, there is scope for activity to slow, perhaps sharply."