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UK house prices hit record high as buyer demand continues

Average house prices have hit a new record high for the third month in a row, new data from Rightmove shows.

Month-on-month prices have risen by an average of 1.6% (+£5,537) to £360,101 across the UK. Despite growing economic challenges, all Britain’s nations and regions reached record price highs.

Wales saw the biggest year-on-year increase in house prices – up 14.5% to £252,736 on average – while the South West saw England’s largest rise at 13.5% to £379,956.

Properties are also selling faster than ever – twice as quickly than in 2019. Scotland had the fastest selling time for homes at just 22 days on average, compared to 51 days in London. Rightmove said the demand meant 53% of UK properties are selling at or over the full asking price – the highest level ever seen.

Affordability constraints caused by the rising cost of living and a dampened economy are expected to slow the pace of price rises later this year. But high buyer demand and limited stock for sale suggests that while price growth may ease, sustained price falls are unlikely.

Tim Bannister, Rightmove’s director of property data said: “With three new monthly price records in a row, 2022 has started with price-rise momentum even greater than during the stamp-duty-holiday-fuelled market of last year.

“While growing affordability constraints mean that this momentum is not sustainable for the longer term, the high demand from a large number of buyers chasing too few properties for sale has led to a spring price frenzy, a hat-trick of record price months, and the largest price increase for a three-month period Rightmove has ever recorded.”

Buyer enquiries to agents are down by 16% on last year’s stamp-duty frenzy, but are still 65% above 2019 levels and the number of sales agreed is up 21%, Rightmove said.

Mr Bannister added: “It seems likely that the supply-demand mismatch will remain for at least the rest of this year. Even with some economic uncertainty, where you live and your home is such a fundamental decision for people that it will remain a priority for many.”

Average house prices across the UK in order of yearly percentage increase

Data from Rightmove

Wales – £252,736 (up 14.5% year on year)

South West – £379,956 (13.5%)

East Midlands – £280,058 (12.5%)

East of England – £418,361 (11.4%)

North West – £243,816 (11.4%)

North East – £180,088 (11.2%)

West Midlands – £275,846 (10.7%)

South East – £479,500 (10.6%)

Yorkshire and Humber – £234,978 (9.8%)

Scotland – £182,310 (7.5%)

London – £677,110 (6.6%)

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