U.K. House Prices Grew at Strongest in Seven Years, Halifax Says

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U.K. house prices grew at their strongest pace in almost seven years as consumers unleashed pent-up savings to gain more space after coronavirus lockdowns, Halifax Building Society said.

Prices grew 1.3% in May, driving the annual pace of growth to 9.5%, the mortgage lender said in a statement on Monday. That put the average cost of a home at 261,743 pounds ($369,895).

The report confirmed findings of Nationwide Building Society, which also showed prices growing at the fastest since 2014. The market is benefitting from a temporary tax-break on property purchases, a buildup in savings by consumers and confidence in recovery from the virus.

U.K. House Prices Grew at Strongest in Seven Years, Halifax Says

“While these effects will be temporary, the current strength in house prices also points to a deeper and long-lasting change as buyer preferences shift in anticipation of new, post-pandemic lifestyles – as greater demand for larger properties with more space might warrant an increased willingness to spend a higher proportion of income on housing,” said Halifax Director Russell Galley.

London prices grew more slowly than the rest of the country.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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