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House prices surge past expectations in December

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Britain   House prices were up 2.2%

UK house prices rose much more than expected in December, according to the latest figures from mortgage lender Halifax, but the underlying trend remains weak.

House prices were up 2.2% compared to a 1.2% decline the month before and well ahead of expectations for a 0.2% increase.

On the year, house prices rose 1.3% after a 0.3% increase in November, comfortably beating expectations for a 0.4% jump.

Halifax managing director Russell Galley said: "Overall, house price growth in 2018 was very much within the range of 0-3% as we forecast at the start of the year. In 2019, we're expecting continued stability in house prices with between 2% and 4% price inflation. This is slightly stronger than 2018, but still fairly subdued by modern comparison.

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