How you can still win in a sluggish property market

House prices are likely to finish the year up by about 7%, despite dire predictions of falls of up to 20% at the start of 2009.

The value of the average property fell by 19% from a peak of £186,044 in October 2007, to a trough of £147,746 in February this year, according to the Nationwide house price index.

Confidence returned, however, with the market bouncing back 8% to £162,764 in November as the expected flood of repossessions failed to materialise and buyer demand outstripped the supply of property coming on to the market …

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