Property prices continue to fall.

Data from the Land Registry has shown that house prices fell in the 12 months to Feb 2011 by 1.7%, taking the average property value in England and Wales to £162,215.  The monthly change from January to February is a decrease of 0.8%.

The North East reported that largest annual price fall, a drop of 7.1%, and the largest monthly price fall of 4%.

London and the East showed increases in average proeprty prices in the last 12 months of 3.2% and 1.2% respectively.

Figures to the end of December 2010 show that the number of completed house sales in England and Wales dropped by 30% in 2010.  The number of properties sold in England and Wales for over £1m increased by 3% between December 2009 and December 2010, from 522 to 540.

A report in the Financial Times says that Simon Rubinsohn, chief economist at the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics), warned against worrying about the December volatility.

"This can be attributed to the lower stamp duty in place in 2009, which caused an acceleration of house price sales at the back end of 2009.

"However the figures do show that we are still in that same trend - there are lower volumes of completions than the historic average and the peak of the market. There is a weakness in sales in most price brackets."

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