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Average UK property price up £24,500 in 2021

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House prices increased by 9.8% last year, but growth could start to slow as inflationary pressures bite
Average UK property price up £24,500 in 2021

UK house prices rose again in December for the sixth month in a row, rising by 1.1%, said Halifax.

The average price for a property now stands at £276,091, an increase of more than £24,500 compared to December 2020, marking the strongest year-on-year cash rise since March 2003.

House prices were up 9.8% in 2021, said the lender.

Russell Galley, managing director of Halifax, said: “The housing market defied expectations in 2021, with quarterly growth reaching 3.5% in December, a level not seen since November 2006. In 2021 we saw the average house price reach new record highs on eight occasions, despite the UK being subject to ‘lockdown’ for much of the first six months of the year.

“A lack of available homes for sale, and historically low mortgage rates, have helped drive annual house price inflation to 9.8%, its highest level since July 2007.”

Rob Peters, director of Altrincham-based Simple Fast Mortgage, added: “Traditionally in December, even the most staunch first-time buyers take a break from house hunting, but December 2021 was a month like no other based on this evidence. With demand high and supply extremely low, a further rise in interest rates won’t upset the property market this year.”

Regional performance

Wales is the strongest performing nation or region in the UK with annual house price inflation of 14.5%, taking the average house price to £205,579.

Northern Ireland also recorded double-digit annual growth (10.6%, average house price of £170,946).

House prices continue to rise in Scotland, with the average property now up 9.7% year-on-year, with the average price of £192,988, the most expensive on record.

In England, the North West was the strongest performing region (11.8%), followed by the South West.

London remains by far the weakest performing area for annual inflation (2.1%).

Growth could slow in 2022

Halifax’s Galley predicted that ‘house price growth will slow considerably’ this year as a reult of rising interest rates, and rising inflation.

He said: “Our expectation is that house prices will maintain their current strong levels but that growth relative to the last two years will be at a slower pace. However, there are many variables which could push house prices either way, depending on how the pandemic continues to impact the economic environment.”

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