12.2 per cent year-on-year drop in house prices

People wondering whether to move or improve may have had their minds made up for them by the latest figures showing a 12.2 per cent year-on-year drop in house prices.

Every one of the ten regions across England and Wales recorded a dip during the month of January, according to the latest Financial Times House Price Index (FTHPI).

While selling up is becoming an increasingly less attractive proposition, homeowners may consider upgrading their current property by converting the attic and adding a roof light to give extra space.

Dr Peter Williams of Acadametrics, the body that carried out the study, outlined the poor state of the market.

"The annual rate of change of the FTHPI, at -12.2 per cent, represents the largest fall ever that we have reported, and this is the 17th month in succession in which the annual rate has again fallen in nominal terms," he said.

Prices fell by 1.4 per cent during the first month of the year and it is the 11th consecutive month in the downward trend.

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors recently suggested a lack of mortgage credit was holding the market back as interest from first-time buyers has increased month-on-month during the last three months.