London was the weakest region for house price growth a year ago

Average house prices in the UK increased by 5.2% in the year to December 2017, up from 5.0% in November 2017, according to the latest UK House Price Index from the ONS and Land Registry. A 5.9% growth in the North West is an impressive amount of capital growth and, with strong tenant demand and high rental yields, it has long remained the place to be for buy-to-let.

Equally it's not a shock to see that the data indicates an increase month on month and also year on year in terms of those who borrowed to remortgage in 2017, with numbers up 8.3 per cent annually and by 7.4 per cent month on month, a likely impact of the interest rate rise in the penultimate month of 2017.

House prices rose by an average of £12,000 in 2017, new statistics revealed today.

Semi-detached properties saw a significant uplift in 2017, rising to £226,034 in December 2017 from £213,878 in December 2016, as did apartments which saw an average annual price rise of 4.7 per cent across the country.

On a regional basis, London continued to host the highest average house price, at £484,000, followed by the South East and East of England, at £322,000 and £290,000 respectively.

"Cumulatively, house prices have increased by 22 per cent more than earnings between 2012 and 2017". In Scotland the average property increased in value by 7.7 per cent over the year to stand at £149,000. The average property in the region now stands at £130,000.

Meanwhile, price growth in London was below the United Kingdom average for the 13th month in a row - although the average house price in the capital was £484,173, compared with £226,756 in the United Kingdom as a whole. Buyers here were paying a £4,000 more to buy a home than those in November, an increase matched only by the North East. This is the English region with the highest house price growth during 2017.

This was followed by house price increases of 6.3 per cent in both the East and West Midlands, and a 5.9 per cent increase to property prices in the North West.

Of course, in the face of rising house prices in many parts of the United Kingdom, combined with plateauing wage growth, it's probably reasonable to suggest that a flat market in 2018 wouldn't be the worst outcome, given that inflation still needs to be brought under control and that interest rates are set to rise again this year, with many predicting a further increase in May, following on from Mark Carney's comments last week.

London saw the lowest annual price rise, up by 2.5% and the South East saw the most significant monthly price fall, down by 0.5%. The average price of property in this area is £146,842.

"Despite sitting at the more unaffordable end of the market, Cambridge has seen the second strongest annual price growth in the UK".

In December, the most expensive borough to purchase a property was Kensington and Chelsea, where the average house price was £1.2m.

House prices in the UK's richest borough Kensington plunge by 10.7%


"However, the issue of affordability has not gone away, and for those concerned, speaking to a broker can be a great starting point".

He said that as a result market dynamics in the housing market have shifted.

"That doesn't change the fact that property prices are still inflated, underpinned by the lack of supply, and pent-up interest will continue to nudge properties just out of reach for those hoping to buy - even with the cut to stamp duty".

"Crucially the experience of 2017 has forced many sellers to adjust their price expectations". A volatile stock market will push even more people to invest in property and, despite changes to the tax law, buy-to-let is still producing high income.

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