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New buyers back in house market

House prices went up by 0.3 per cent in January following a 0.2 per cent rise in December, according to Hometrack&#39s monthly survey of the market.

The biggest price rises were seen in Cornwall and South Yorkshire (1.1 per cent) followed by Hereford and Worcester and the West Midlands (0.9 per cent) and North Wales (0.8 per cent.

Prices fell by 0.1 per cent in Central London and East Sussex.

The survey shows that the average house cost £147,200 in January, up from £146,800 in December. The average sales price achieved as a percentage of the asking price rose to 95.2 per cent from a low of 94.3 per cent in June 2003.

Hometrack economist John Wriglesworth says: “The North continues to outpace the South, with Northern regions typically experiencing house price rises at twice the rate of the South.

“However, all regions are picking up. Our estate agents all over the country are reporting significant increases in new buyer interest, which we expect to feed through to higher monthly house price rises nationwide in the coming months.”

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