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London house prices fall in Q3, Purplebricks trading update positive

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The latest housing market update from high street lender Nationwide Friday, reports that London house prices fell on the quarter in Q3, for the first time in eight years. In other housing-related news, online estate agent Purplebricks’ trading update was upbeat on its US launch and revenue goals.

UK lender Nationwide’s closely watched monthly house price index rose 0.2% on the month and by 2% on the year in September. That compares with a 01% monthly drop and 2.1% annual gain in August.

However, it’s quarterly, regional analysis showed a weaker picture, particularly in London. The lender said the average price of a property in London fell 0.6% in the third quarter compared with the second quarter of 2017. City prices were 1.2% higher compared with Q3 2016.

The East Midlands, meanwhile, was the top regional, quarterly performer. Prices there rose 5.1% on the quarter and by 4.1% compared with the third quarter a year earlier.

“House price growth rates across the UK have converged in recent quarters,” said Nationwide’s chief economist, Robert Gardner. “London has seen a particularly marked slowdown, with prices falling in annual terms for the first time in eight years…. Consequently, London was the weakest performing region for the first time since 2005”.

While Nationwide reported a subdued housing market, online estate agency Purplebricks’ trading update was positive. The business stated its recent launch into the US had been successful so far, with higher response rates than in the UK and Australia at the same point.

Group chief executive Michael Bruce also said the group was on track to post annual revenues of £80 million for the UK and £12 million for Australia. And, on the topic of its Trustpilot reviews, Bruce brushed off any controversy over the businesses demand for some to be removed.

“We are relentless in working to ensure we understand our customers’ needs and meet their expectations and are proud of our 27,000 Trustpilot reviews and NPS score of +80.”

Purplebricks received a number of poor reviews following a mistake whereby UK customers were directed to list their properties for sale on the US site.

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