House prices fall for 15th month
House prices continued to slide last month with a 0.1% fall - the 15th consecutive drop in a row, a key survey has revealed.
Property analyst Hometrack's monthly report predicted that the downward trend will accelerate as supply has grown at double the rate of demand.
The number of new properties coming on to the market in the nine months up to September grew by 22% - but demand increased by only 11%.
The survey suggested national and Eurozone uncertainty would dent consumer confidence further and see demand drop off even more.
Elsewhere, new demand for housing weakened last month as buyer numbers registering with agents went down 2.6%, following a 1.2% drop in August.
Richard Donnell, director of research at Hometrack, said: "The September survey shows a clear shift in the balance between supply and demand in the housing market, with the number of people looking to buy falling for the second month in a row. This is in contrast to the first half of the year, when demand had been steadily rising. On the supply side, the number of new properties coming to the market in the nine months up until September grew at twice the rate of demand."
Hometrack's monthly housing market figures are based on the views of estate agents and surveyors across England and Wales and what they believe is the achievable selling price of properties in every postcode district.
The survey does not release an average house price figure and is intended as a "snapshot" of the current market.
Hometrack said the downward house price trend was steepest in the second half of last year, which saw a 0.5% drop, compared with a 0.1% tumble over the last six months.
A quarter of postcode districts - 25% - saw a price decrease in September, while 8% had an increase. In the previous month, 28% of districts were hit by price falls and 9% experienced a rise.