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Official figures confirm house buying surge

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Figures from HM Land Registry have confirmed the surge in house prices recorded in commercial surveys.

On average, UK house prices rose by 1.8 per cent between February and March, putting the annual rate of increase at 10.2 per cent, it reported. This week.

In England the monthly rise was 1.7 per cent, and the annual rise 10.2 per cent, taking the average, house prices to £274,615.

Yorkshire and the Humber saw the highest rate of monthly rise: an increase of  3.4 per cent – and the highest annual rate of increase also, put at 14 per cent.

The South East was the part of England with the lowest monthly price growth – in fact a fall of 0.9 per cent. London, which has the highest average house price (£500,310)  had the lowest annual price growth, with a rise of 3.7 per cent.

In the North East the average house price was £145,983, in the North West £187,924, and in Yorkshire and the Humber £188,575. These were also the areas with the highest average annual rate of price increase: 13.7 per cent, 12.8 per cent and 14 per cent respectively.

By type of property, it was also the category with the lowest average price – terraced houses, which averaged £226,369 – which had the highest rate of price increase – up 12.1 per cent on the year. 

In London, terraced houses sold for an average £541,889, and were the second cheapest category after flats and maisonettes. However, they were the fastest rising in price at 7.2 per cent – compared to just 1 per cent for flats and maisonettes.

In Wales, average, house prices increased by 3.1 per cent on the month and 11 per cent on the year, bring the average price of a house to £185,431. Terraced houses, up 12.3 per cent on the year, averaged £145,457, and flats and maisonettes, up 2.4 per cent, averaged £119,432.

There were an estimated 190,980 house purchases with a value of £40,000 or more in March 2021,  an increase of 102.4 per cent on March 2020. Between February and March 2021, UK transactions increased by 32.2 per cent on a seasonally adjusted basis.

The figures come with a health warning. HM Land Registry said the impact of the Coronavirus Crisis means that although the data is not inaccurate it may not be as complete as it could be – meaning the figures may be subject to increased revisions in coming months. 

Meanwhile it said it is the Registry’s ‘absolute top priority is to reduce any delays’.