UK house prices rise further, sales jump - RICS

Reuters

LONDON (Reuters) - British house prices recorded their fastest rise in almost seven years last month and a measure of sales volumes also jumped to a multi-year high, a survey showed on Tuesday.

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors' seasonally adjusted house price balance climbed to +40 from a slightly upwardly revised +37 in July, staying at its highest since November 2006.

The balance reflects the percentage of property professionals saying that prices rose minus those reporting falls.

Britain's housing market has shown signs of a revival this year, spurred by a healing economy and help from the government and the Bank of England to ease access to finance. But the scale of the recovery has raised concerns about a new property bubble.

The RICS survey found that a net balance of +45 of surveyors expect further price growth over the next three months. Over the coming year, house prices are forecast to rise by 2.2 percent.

"Momentum is increasingly broad-based across the country; this isn't just a London story," RICS said.

The average number of sold properties per surveyor rose to 17.9 over the last three months, the highest since January 2010.

The number of properties going on sale also increased markedly in August, with the relevant balance jumping to +26 from 16 in July.

"With positivity starting to return to areas right across the UK, it seems those who may have been waiting for the right time to sell are choosing now to do so," RICS said.

(Reporting by Olesya Dmitracova; editing by Ron Askew)

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