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A leading mortgage lender has stated that on average UK residential property values are now 1.5% lower than a year ago. 

Average property prices in the UK slipped to £165,738 (GBP) down by 0.6% in June this year, compared with May 2012.

Robert Gardner, Nationwide Chief Economist, said: “The slightly weaker trend we’ve observed since March is unsurprising, given the difficult economic backdrop, with the UK economy dipping back into recession at the start of the year and few signs of a near-term rebound. Part of the weakness in property prices may also relate to the ending of the Stamp Duty holiday in March. However, the outlook for UK house prices remains highly uncertain.”

The perceived drop in property values is good news for property investors who negotiate directly with distressed property vendors, allowing them to ease the property owners financial burdens without breaking the bank.

Nationwide also estimate that over 200,000 First-Time Buyers (FTBs) saved around £1,800 each reaping maximum benefit from the Stamp Duty break. 

Popular property portal – Rightmove reckon first-time buyers are ‘surprisingly’ upbeat and that there are now more prospective first-time buyers than at any time over the last three years, with almost three in ten people expecting to buy property in the next 12 months.

However, the biggest concern for 33% is about raising a deposit, although this proportion is down from 42% a year ago.

Miles Shipside, director of Rightmove, said: “The results come as a welcome surprise, and hopefully, this three-year high in intending first-time buyers will come to fruition. It seems that some five years into the property market downturn, more people are beginning to get their heads and wallets around the new rules of first-time home ownership, though they still face some testing challenges.”

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