UK house prices bucked the seasonal trend at the end of 2016, rising by an average of 7.2 percent. The rise has added £3,000 to the average cost of a property in the UK, according to official figures compiled and released by the Office for National Statistics on February 14.
The rise, recorded in the year to December 2016, comes at the end of a turbulent year marked by the referendum decision to leave the European Union. House prices had slowed following June's Brexit vote, but the ONS stats show the resilience of the UK property market.
The increase compares to a rise of 6.1 percent in the year to November and means the average price of a UK property in December stood at £220,000, a rise of £15,000 on December 2015 and £3,000 up on November's prices.
East of England outstrips London as fastest-growing region
Property prices in London remain the highest in the country, rising by 7.5 percent in the year. In the capital, average house prices now stand at £484,000. But the capital was only third in the list of fastest-growing region, led by the east of England with an 11.3 percent increase in house prices and the south-east of England on 8.5 percent.
In England, the average price of a house is £236,000 with Wales on £148,000 and Scotland on £142,000.
In the summary of the findings - compiled by figures from the Land Registry, Land and Property Services Northern Ireland and the Registers of Scotland - the ONS noted that December's increase on the November percentage rise was still “below the level of annual growth seen in the first half of the year”. However, figures across all areas of the country showed that only central London failed to recover in the final quarter of 2016.
Housing market's resilience a positive sign
As property prices rise and mortgage lending remains strong, according to ONS and Bank of England data, now is a good time for both first-time buyers and those looking to move to explore the market.
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