Figures from February’s Halifax House Price Index reveal a slight increase in house prices across the country, with the average house price edging closer to a quarter of a million pounds.
Prices throughout the UK rose by 0.3%, compared to last month’s figures, with the average house price now costing £240,677.
Commenting on this months figures, Russell Galley, Managing Director, Halifax, said: “The UK housing market has remained steady heading into early spring, with house prices increasing by 0.3% in February and up 2.8% on the previous year.
“Much like we saw in January, the increases seen in February reflect the continued improvement of key market indicators. The sustained level of buyer and seller activity is strong compared to recent years, with positive employment conditions and a competitive mortgage market continuing to support demand.”
One of the more eye-catching figures from this months index, was the rise in the number of home sales throughout January, which hit levels not previously seen in the UK since 2017.
In addition to the increasing number of sales, unsurprisingly, the number of mortgage approvals has also risen.
Figures from the Bank of England show that the number of mortgages approved to finance house purchases was 70,888 in January 2020 – representing a Year on Year growth of 7.1%.
Despite the market positives, Russel warns that the outlook for the property sector could be affected by the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak which has reportedly caused a loss in business for a number of estate agents across the UK.
Russel adds: “Looking ahead, there are a number of risks, including the potential impact of coronavirus, which continue to exert pressure on the economy and we wait to see how these will affect housing market sentiment later in the year.”