UK house price growth hits eight-month low in September - Nationwide

FILE PHOTO: Property sale signs are seen outside of a group of newly built houses in west London, Britain, November 23, 2017. REUTERS/Toby Melville/File Photo

LONDON (Reuters) - British house price growth touched an eight-month low in annual terms in September, adding to signs that the market may be cooling again ahead of the October Brexit deadline, a survey showed on Tuesday.

House prices rose 0.2% on the year, slowing from a 0.6% increase in August, mortgage lender Nationwide said. A Reuters poll of economists had pointed to a 0.5% rise.

In September alone, house prices fell 0.2% against expectations for a 0.1% rise.

British house price growth has slowed since 2016’s Brexit referendum - with prices falling in London and some neighboring areas.

“Uncertainty about Brexit has greatly dampened house prices, though a sustained period of falling prices likely doesn’t lie ahead, provided a no-deal Brexit is avoided,” economist Samuel Tombs from Pantheon Macroeconomics said.

Quarterly data from Nationwide showed house prices in London fell 1.7% year-on-year in the third quarter, versus a 0.7% drop in the second quarter.

Bank of England data shows the number of mortgages approved for house purchase dropped to 65,545 in August from 67,011 in July, below all forecasts in a Reuters poll of economists.

Reporting by Andy Bruce; editing by Kate Holton