Over the year 2009, house prices across UK ended 5.9% higher than the figure which was recorded for the previous year, as has been confirmed by the nationwide index which was made public on Thursday, which pointed towards the surprising strength of the country's housing sector.
For the month of December, prices of residential properties were up by 0.4%, having recorded a rise in every month, except for one, since March 2009. The pace of the rise, however, was marginally moderated, with prices surging by 2.1% in 2009's final quarter, as compared to the rise of 3.8% recorded during the third quarter.
Currently, prices are 8.9% more than the record low they had hit in February, but are still 12.2% lower than the peak which was reached in October 2007.
Experts have been pleasantly surprised by the rapid rise in prices of homes, who mostly expected 2009 to be a year full of further falls in the housing market.
All throughout 2009, the demand for residential properties kept outracing the supply, which kicked the prices even further. “This restriction in supply meant that even a relatively modest pick-up in demand was able to put upward pressure on house prices”, said Martin Gahbauer, economist at Nationwide, who was quick to assert that people should not expect the same rise for 2010.