UK house prices just hit their highest on record (again)

Emma Haslett
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House prices in the UK rose at their fastest rate since the beginning of January (Source: Getty)

UK house prices hit their highest on record in October, having grown at their fastest since the beginning of the year.

The average UK house price rose to £225,826 in October, up 2.3 per cent in the three months between August and October, their fastest rise since January this year.

Year-on-year growth hit 4.5 per cent, the highest level since February, although month-on-month growth slowed to 0.3 per cent, from 0.8 per cent in September, according to the figures by Halifax.

However, optimism among homeowners has fallen, with just 50 per cent of those surveyed by Halifax expecting house prices to rise over the next year, the lowest level since April 2013, while one in five said prices will fall, the highest level since October 2012.

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The analysis pointed out figures by HM Revenue and Customs which suggested the number of housing transactions had edged two per cent lower, with sales falling to 100,850 in September, while research by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) last month showed the number of new sales instructions and the number of new enquiries from buyers had both fallen in September.

“The fact that the supply of new homes and existing properties available for sale remains low, combined with historically low mortgage rates and a high employment rate, continues to support house prices and is likely to do so over the coming months," said Russell Galley, managing director at Halifax Community Bank.

"Increasing pressure on household finances and continuing affordability concerns are some of the factors likely to dampen buyer demand. That said we do not anticipate the base rate rise will be a barrier to buying a house."

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