House price fall ‘due to freak events’

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House prices have shown their steepest monthly decline for more than three years, with wet weather and the Olympics contributing to the fall, according to a new report.

The average cost of a home in Scotland was down 1.2 per cent in August to £143,867, making it the biggest monthly fall in prices since March 2009.

Despite the decrease, experts said there was room for cautious optimism as the figures could just be “a blot on the copybook of recovery”.

The average house price was down 2.1 per cent on August last year, the latest LSL/Acad Scotland House Price Index shows. It means the cost has returned to the level of November 2009, when prices were recovering from the housing crisis of 2008.

Richard Sexton, director of e.surv chartered surveyors, part of LSL, said: “The headline figures suggest the housing market is slipping back into the deep hole of 2009, but it isn’t time to start ringing the alarm bells just yet.

“There were ‘freak’ factors in play over the summer: various summer events and the torrent of rainfall.

“First-time buyer numbers are up 9 per cent on last year and demand is still strong August should prove to be just a blot on the copybook of recovery.”