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House price growth slumps in March after February surge, says Halifax

Hopes of a return to rapidly rising house prices were dashed when the latest Halifax House Price Index revealed that average property values fell 1.8% on a monthly basis in March to £233,181, following a 6% spike between January and February. Annual growth also slowed from 2.8% to 2.6%.

Russell Galley, managing director at Halifax, said: “The need to build up a deposit before getting a mortgage is still a challenge for many looking to buy a property. However, the combined effect of fewer houses for sale and fewer people looking to buy continues to support prices in the long term.

“These conflicting challenges, when combined with the ongoing uncertainty around Brexit, have had an impact across the country but most notably in London, meaning that we continue to expect subdued price growth for the time being.”

Commenting on the data, Jonathan Hopper, managing director of buying agent Garrington Property Finders, said: “February’s stratospheric growth figure always seemed too good to be true. March’s sharp correction confirms it was a blip rather than a long-term bounce – and just how volatile the month-on-month figures can be in a market so starved of supply.”

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