House prices will defy the doomsayers this year and settle to an average growth of 3pc, according to research from CB Richard Ellis. Daily Telegraph

With equity in the UK residential market at an alltime high, a nervous consensus in the industry predicts between +3% and -3% growth in 2008, though some forecasters have warned of falls of up to 10%.

However, real estate adviser CB Richard Ellis says homeowners are in for a slowdown, not a crash. The group has even predicted that London will outperform the market at 6%.

Jennet Siebrits, head of residential research at CB Richard Ellis, said: 'This is not a repeat of the 1990s crash, as housing equity and employment rates are at an all-time high and interest rates remain low.

'With the benign economic backdrop and unique nature of the housing market, we do not envisage forced sales and repossessions spiralling. Instead, we expect a lower level of transactions in 2008.'