2.5% rise in house prices shows biggest monthly hike since 2002
Sat 27 Feb 2016
House prices recorded their biggest monthly jump since 2002 in January, with a 2.5% increase, Land Registryfigures show.
The 4,732 cash increase in the average property value compared with December pushed the average houseprice across England and Wales to 191,812.
The 2.5% upswing is the biggest monthly percentage increase recorded by the Land Registry since June 2002.On a regional basis, Wales saw the biggest monthly increase in property values in January, with a 3.7% increasetaking the average house price there to 125,665.
Across England and Wales as a whole, property values increased by 7.1% in the year to January.
In London, house prices increased at an annual rate around double the national average. Property values inLondon recorded a 13.9% annual increase, pushing the average house price there to 530,409.
But in Reading, house prices increased at an even faster rate over the last year, surging by 16.1%.
Over the last year, average house prices leapt by 10% in Brighton and Hove, 12% in Bristol, 11.8% inHertfordshire, 15.7% in Luton, 10.5% in Milton Keynes, 10.2% in South Gloucestershire, 15.1% in Thurrock,10.6% in Windsor and Maidenhead, 11.3% in Wokingham and 15.1% in Slough.
The North East of England saw the smallest annual increase in house prices across the regions, with a 0.2%increase taking the average property value there to 97,117.
The region also saw the biggest month-on-month fall in house prices, with a 1.6% decrease.The North West of England was the only other region to see house prices fall month-on-month, edging down by
There have been reports of buy-to-let investors rushing to snap up properties before a three percentage pointstamp duty hike comes into force for this sector in April.
Peter Rollings, CEO of estate agent Marsh and Parsons, said: "First-time buyers and buy-to-let investors aremoving at a brisk pace, and while they continue to grossly outnumber properties for sales, house price growth willpersist through the wider political uncertainty."
Meanwhile, Jeremy Leaf, a north London estate agent and former chairman of the Royal Institution of CharteredSurveyors (Rics), said: "On the ground, we have seen a gradual slowdown in the market over the past week orso.
"This is happening in anticipation of the stamp duty increase for investors and second home buyers."Campbell Robb, chief executive of Shelter, warned that people on average incomes "will continue to face alifetime in expensive and unstable private renting, with little hope of saving for a home to put down roots in".