On the 19th of July the OfficialHouse Prices Index (HPI) - which has now replaced statistics previously produced by the Office for National Statistics and the Land Registry - reported that property prices in the UK increased by 1.1% in May. The average price of a property in the UK at the end of May was £211,230, up 8.1% on May 2015.
The HPI stated: 'The timing of the stamp duty tax seems to have cooled demand in recent months, but this follows an extended period of increases in activity. Following a strong increase in sales in the month prior to the stamp duty changes (March 2016), UK home sales fell by 42.3% in April 2016 to their lowest level since May 2013; these have only recovered slightly in May 2016.
'Indicators of supply in the housing market were more mixed. The BoE reported a shortage of newly built and secondary market housing supply in May. RICS also reports that general supply, as measured by new instructions to sell, experienced a broad based fall in May 2016.'
However, Jonathan Hopper, managing director at Garrington Property Finders, says: "Reassuringly rosy though it is, this official house price data offers scant insight into what's going on in today's property market. This May index offers a snapshot of the market that already looks sepia-tinted. The image is a familiar one - strong price growth in much of England, with prices in the southeastern corner and East Anglia rising at a blistering pace.