The average house price in the UK was £211,671 last month – a new record for the Nationwide Building Society’s index.
Property values increased by 0.3 per cent month on month and by 2.9 per cent annually.
In July 2016, annual house price growth was running at a stronger pace of 5.2 per cent.
Robert Gardener, chief economist at the Nationwide, said a scarcity of homes for sale was behind the price growth, but predicted more of a buyers’ market in coming months.
He said: “A lack of homes on the market appears to be providing support, with annual house price growth remaining only just outside the three to six per cent range that has been prevailing for most of the past two years.
“This pattern looks set to be maintained in the near term.
“Survey data points to relatively sluggish levels of new buyer inquiries, but at the same time surveyors report that relatively few properties are coming on the market.”
Mr Gardener said ultimately, housing market developments were depended on wider economic performance.
He said that while employment was growing, wages were failing to keep up with the rising cost of living, leading to pressure on household budgets.
Murray Smith, managing director of residential property sales consultancy, SiteSales, said the data was proof that there is stagnation in the market caused by uncertainties over Brexit and fiscal policy.
He added that house buying was not seen as a priority at the moment in the minds of most people.
He said: ”Fewer homes in general are on the market per agent – down from 65 in 2013 to 45 now, and falling.
“You would think the effect would be strong demand, but that doesn’t necessarily happen as the properties for sale may not match demand.
“There is apathy in the buyers’ minds and buying at the moment is not seen as a ‘must do’.
“This is supported by the fact that while our new home outlets are experiencing good sales levels, it is only when the price is perceived as good value or negotiation takes place.”
He pointed out that first time buyers are ever more reliant on government-backed assistance schemes, such as shared ownership and help to buy, and questioned what the market would look like without them.
But he urged those interested in buying to do so now as the potential for growth in the medium term was good.
He said: “It is not often that the buyer has the power in the property cycle, but right now they do and so should take advantage.”