House prices rise for fifth month in row but Halifax warns of setbacks for year ahead

The monthly Halifax house price index shows that house prices jumped by a bigger than expected 1.4 per cent in November, spurred on by higher demand and a shortage of properties for sale.

The increase was the fifth successive monthly rise with prices more than four per cent higher over the first 11 months of the year. The average cost of a house in the UK is now £167,664.

However, that is still 1.6 per cent cheaper than this time last year, and the recovery in house prices that we’ve seen in the past six months is unlikely to be sustained next year, analysts warned.

Seema Shah, a property economist at Capital Economics, said: ‘With the economic recovery likely to be lacklustre, unemployment set to rise and household incomes likely to be under downward pressure from pay freezes, house price falls remain the most likely outcome next year.’