UK house prices are close to a four-year high, according to our latest House Price Index Report.
House prices are up 4.3% year-on-year, the highest since April 2017. It means that the average property is now worth £223,700.
The momentum is mainly coming from northern English regions, where buyer demand is strong and affordability levels are higher.
House price growth over the last 12 months is highest in Wales and the north west, where values in both areas have jumped 5.4%. Yorkshire and the Humber follows closely behind, at 5.3%.
But at a city level, it’s Liverpool that has climbed to the top of the ranking. House prices have risen 6.3% over the last year – the highest annual growth rate for 15 years.
Manchester is hot on its heels, with house prices increasing 6% year-on-year.
Towns and cities that have seen annual house price growth in the 5% range include Nottingham and Leeds, both at 5.8%, and Leicester at 5%.
And those that have recorded houses price rises in the 4% bracket include Sheffield (4.7%), Cardiff (4.3%), Birmingham and Brighton (both 4.2%), and York (4%).
Meanwhile values have climbed 3.5%, 3.6% and 3.8% in the likes of Bournemouth, Newcastle and Exeter.
There are three regions where house price growth is at its highest since 2007: the north east, Yorkshire & Humber, and the north west.
Values in these regions are rising at 3.8%, 5.3% and 5.4% a year respectively.
The latest lockdown has exacerbated an imbalance between buyer appetite and the number of homes for sale.
Despite the third lockdown, buyer demand has rebounded strongly after Christmas.
The pandemic has prompted many people to carry out a once-in-a-lifetime re-assessment of their homes and lifestyles – and this has been buoyed by a last-minute rush to beat the stamp duty holiday deadline.
Demand for homes to buy was 13% up in the three-odd weeks between Boxing Day and 17 January than the same time a year ago.
But this has not been matched by the level of supply, with coronavirus cases and calls to uphold social distancing appearing to make some sellers reluctant to list their homes for sale at the moment.
The flow of homes coming onto the market is down 12% compared with this time last year.
For the wider impact of coronavirus on the property market, check out the latest from our Research and Insights team