RTTNews - U.K. house prices remained stable in May for the first time in 20 months, a survey conducted by Hometrack revealed Monday. For the last 20 months, house prices were recording month-on-month declines.

After falling 0.3% in April, average house prices stayed at GBP 155,600 in May. But house prices declined 9.6% from the year ago period.

Richard Donnell, director of research at Hometrack said it is too early to rule out future price falls and the outlook for the housing market remained fragile.

The survey found that the percentage of asking price that sellers achieved increased to 90.3% from 89.6% in the prior month. Vendors re-aligned their price expectations to a level that buyers are willing to pay.

Based on the survey, Hometrack said the number of buyers registering with the real estate agents rose 6% in May from the prior month.

Other reports on the British housing market also pointed towards an improvement in activity. The British Bankers' Association's report showed that the number of mortgages approved in April rose to 27,685 from 26,671 in March.

According to Nationwide Building Society, house prices rose in May to record the largest increase since October 2007. House prices were up 1.2% from the prior month, reversing a 0.3% decline reported in April.

The Bank of England is set to announce its interest rate decision on June 4. The central bank is widely expected to hold the interest rate at a historic low of 0.5%. The British Chambers of Commerce said the MPC should accelerate the tempo at which they execute the asset purchase programme and urged the central bank to increase the scheme's size beyond GBP 125 billion.

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