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House prices rise at fastest rate in a year



Average home now costs 297,832, according to Your Move housing index

House prices rise at fastest rate in a year

House prices rose at their fastest pace in more than a year last year, says a new report, underlining the market's resilience in the face of Brexit uncertainty. 

Property rose 0.6 per cent month-on-month to an average of 297,832 in Your Move's latest housing index, says The Independent.

In London, where prices have been falling following last year's increase in stamp duty on second homes and the referendum result, values jumped 0.4 per cent.

Critically, this was driven by the 11 most expensive boroughs, which bucked a two-month decline to rise by an average of 0.8 per cent, says City AM.

In general, there have been fewer transactions since the vote for Brexit, but a shortage of supply has helped sustain prices and keep inflation positive.

However, the declining number of foreign and investment buyers is translating to slower growth overall, a trend most expect to continue.

Your Move's report broadly correlates with this narrative, with annual price rises falling for the 12th consecutive month to hit 2.4 per cent, the lowest it has been since 2013.

The annual gain was also the worst for any February for almost five years while transactions volumes were down 22 per cent over the past three months compared to a year earlier.

Outside London, stronger monthly price growth was driven by the east of England region and "new peak prices in Merseyside and Birmingham", adds City AM.

Oliver Blake, managing director of Your Move and Reeds Rains estate agents, said: "It's an encouraging start to 2017.

"We've seen the strongest house price growth in a year, the emergence of the promised Northern Powerhouse and the first tentative signs of a recovery in our highest priced properties in London."

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