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UK House Prices Rocket at Fastest Rate Since 2007: Halifax

LONDON, March 7 (Reuters) - British house prices are growing at the fastest rate since before the global financial crisis, mortgage lender Halifax said on Monday.

House prices rose 0.5% in February in month-on-month terms, Halifax said.

That brought the average price of a house in Britain to 278,123 pounds ($367,511), up 10.8% on a year ago and marking the fastest annual growth rate since June 2007.

The housing market has been hot in Britain - and many other countries around the world - since the lifting of the first coronavirus lockdown in 2020, boosted by demand for bigger properties as more people worked from home.

The British market was also stoked by a tax incentive offered by finance minister Rishi Sunak which fully expired at the end of September, when a jobs support programme also lapsed.

"Lack of supply continues to underpin rising house prices, with recent industry surveys showing a dearth of new properties being listed, now a long-term trend," Halifax managing director Russell Galley said.

He added that there were reasons to think house price growth will ease later this year - not least because of surging inflation, tax hikes and rising interest rates.

"These factors are likely to weigh on buyer demand as the year progresses, with market activity likely to return to more normal levels and an easing of house price growth to be expected," Galley said. ($1 = 0.7568 pounds)

Reporting by Andy Bruce; editing by James Davey

Source: Reuters

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