The latest house price index from Your Move has revealed that in England and Wales the price of an average home reached £301,278 in March.
According to the report, this represents a 0.5% increase month-on-month, and 3.3% annually.
The number of housing transactions in March 2017 in England & Wales is estimated at 78,500. This is a notable 26% uplift in sales on February’s total, which appears high, but is in line with the average seasonal increase that takes place in March of most years.
The index noted, however, that a comparison of transaction numbers with last year’s levels is ‘not considered particularly useful this month’, as last year’s figures were significantly distorted by the surge in sales that took place immediately prior to the introduction of the 3% surcharge on the purchase of second homes.
Oliver Blake, managing director of Your Move and Reeds Rains estate agents, said: “In England and Wales, house price inflation continues but at a relatively low, though still positive, level.
“The average annual rate of house price inflation was 3.3% in March, slightly up from the revised 3.1% seen in February. From May 2016 onward, there has been a relatively gentle and almost straight-line increase in house prices, despite the Brexit referendum in June 2016.
“There is little in the short-to-medium term that will disrupt the market greatly, with interest rate increases seemingly on hold, mortgage supply and pricing remaining favourable and consumer confidence strong. In addition, first time buyer numbers are up, not least as a consequence of government schemes and the Bank of Mum and Dad.
“However, with supply still tight, rising house prices remain a problem. We therefore cannot afford to overlook the ongoing housing shortage in the UK, which continues to dampen the hopes of many would-be homeowners.
“RICS indicated in its February UK Residential Market Survey that ‘tight supply conditions’ across most regions, along with flat sales in that month, resulted in ‘a further erosion of available stock for sale, with the average stock per surveyor just shy of a record low’. Our data shows that March has seen a pick up on this.”