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The average UK property price has risen to an all-time high of £270,000 as prices defied expectations of a slowdown after the end of the stamp duty holiday.

The Halifax house price index rose 8.1 per cent in October compared with the same month last year, accelerating from 7.4 per cent in the previous month and marking the fastest pace since June.

The increase took the average property price to above £270,000 for the first time on record.

The Halifax index comes two days after the Nationwide report that found the average house price topped £250k in October for the first time. Both indices are based on mortgages they approve with differences resulting from the basket of their customers. 

“One of the key drivers of activity in the housing market over the past 18 months has been the race for space, with buyers seeking larger properties, often further from urban centres,” said Russell Galley, managing director at Halifax.

He added that first-time buyers, supported by parental deposits, improved mortgage access and low borrowing costs, have also helped to drive price growth.

The UK economic performance, with a strong labour market and a record number of job vacancies, provides a “benign backdrop to housing market activity”, said Galley.

London remained by far the weakest performing area of the UK with annual inflation of just 0.8 per cent, the lowest year-on-year rise in prices seen since February 2020. The underperformance of the capital largely reflects subdued demand as increased homeworking meant that many were able to move to less crowded places.

In contrast, Wales was the strongest performing nation or region with annual house price inflation of 12.9 per cent.

However, Galley expects house demand to “cool” in the months ahead as borrowing costs increase following the expected increase in the Bank of England policy rate in December.

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