Average prices in December stood at £230,920, up 7.3% annually, according to Nationwide
UK house prices rose again in December, with annual growth reaching a six-year high of 7.3%, according to Nationwide.
The mortgage lender revealed figures that show the stamp duty holiday and pent-up demand continues to boost the housing market.
Nationwide said average prices in December stood at £230,920, up 0.8% month on month, and up 7.3% annually. Prices ended the year 5.3% above the level prevailing in March, when the first Covid-19 lockdown started.
The lender added that house price growth increased in all regions in fourth quarter, compared with the prior three months.
In London, average prices reached their highest ever at £486,562 in the fourth quarter, up 6.2% from the same three months in 2019.
Robert Gardner, Nationwide’s chief economist, said: The resilience seen in recent quarters seemed unlikely at the start of the pandemic. But, since then, housing demand has been buoyed by a raft of policy measures and changing preferences in the wake of the pandemic.
When the first lockdown started in March, people were urged to avoid moving, viewings were off the cards, and estate agents temporarily closed branches.
The rules relaxed in May, with firms seeing pent-up demand for moves, with many people reassessing housing needs during the lockdown. A suspension of stamp duty on property sales of up to £500,000 was then announced in July, boosting the industry further.
A number of firms recently said high demand for properties has continued into December, with many customers trying to get deals over the line before the stamp duty holiday finishes at the end of March 2021.
But Gardner cautioned: The outlook remains highly uncertain. Much will depend on how the pandemic and the measures to contain it evolve as well as the efficacy of policy measures implemented to limit the damage to the wider economy.
This article is for information purposes only.
Please remember that financial investments may rise or fall and past performance does not guarantee future performance in respect of income or capital growth; you may not get back the amount you invested.
There is no obligation to purchase anything but, if you decide to do so, you are strongly advised to consult a professional adviser before making any investment decisions.