House prices to fall further in 2009

As the year comes to an end and homeowners look back over 12 months of financial turmoil, some would be forgiven for welcoming 2009 as an opportunity for house prices to recover.

But according to one financial expert, things will continue to get worse in the New Year.

Barclays chief executive John Varley believes house prices could fall by a further 15 per cent – a phenomenon that would see the average house price dip below £140,000.

"Our view was that from the top to the bottom you could see a fall of something like 25 to 30 per cent," he is reported as saying in the Scotsman.

"I suspect were about halfway through that at the moment. I mean that slowdown, the negative house price inflation started in 2007; it is accelerated in 2008.

"Were about halfway through that period. So in other words weve got another ten to 15 per cent to fall between now and the end of next year."

With prices set to fall even further and selling proving to be a challenge in a stagnant market, some may consider adding a conservatory to boost the appeal of the home.

Even those planning to ride out the storm may consider home improvement to make life more pleasant until the market recovers.

According to the Halifax the average price of a UK home is now less than £165,000.