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UK average property prices rose by 4.4 per cent in the year to February 2018, according to the latest house price index from ONS.
This figure is down from the 4.7 per cent growth recorded in January. The annual growth rate has slowed slightly since mid-2016. However, it has remained generally beneath 5 per cent throughout 2017 and into 2018.
This fall in UK house price growth has been exacerbated by a fall in London. Average house prices in London were down by 1 per cent in the year to February 2018. This is a marked decline from 1.3 per cent recorded in January 2018.
The average UK house price stood at £225,000 in February 2018. This figure is £9,000 higher than in February 2017 and largely unchanged from the previous month.
Regionally, London continued to top the charts as the region with the highest average house price at £472,000. As per, it was followed by the South East and the East of England, which stood at £322,000 and £288,000 respectively. The lowest average price continued to be in the North East where houses were valued at just £128,000.
Highest annual growth was found in the West Midlands, with prices increasing by 7.3 per cent in the year to February 2018. The East Midlands followed behind at 6.3 per cent.
Once again, the lowest annual growth was in London, where prices declined by 1 per cent over the year. This marks the lowest annual growth in London since September 2009. The capital has seen a general decline since mid-2016.
New Build Manager at Legal & General Mortgage Club, Craig Hall, commented: ‘House prices may still be rising, but this more gradual rate of growth should be welcomed. More sustainable price inflation, combined with competitive mortgage rates and an extensive range of products, will help more first time buyers achieve their dream of homeownership. Schemes such as Shared Ownership and Help to Buy are also clearly helping these buyers, with research from the Home Builders Federation showing that 1 in 12 are now using these schemes to get onto the property ladder. ‘
He continued: ‘Whilst we’ve seen genuine commitment from the Government to address our housing crisis, more can still be done to boost housing stock. We therefore urge the Government and housebuilders to continue working together to find innovative solutions. By embracing more modern methods of construction, we can finally begin to close the gap between supply and demand.’