Britain’s house price growth reached its highest level for 18 months at 2.3 percent in February, Nationwide Building Society has announced in a report.

The cost of the average home edged up by 200 pounds (256.4 U.S. dollars) in February to 216,092 pounds (277,043.3 dollars), higher than the 1.9 percent annual increase in January, said Nationwide, Britain’s biggest building society.

On a monthly basis, average house price across Britain increased by 0.3 percent in February after taking account of seasonal factors, slipping back from the 0.5 percent rise in January.

“While overall economic growth ground to a halt in the final three months of 2019, labour market conditions remained buoyant and borrowing costs low. The decisive election outcome may have provided a boost to buyer sentiment,” said Robert Gardner, chief economist in Nationwide.

Speaking of the housing market trend and house prices ahead, Gardner believed that economic developments would be the key driver.

“Business surveys suggest that activity recovered in the New Year, but there are still significant uncertainties that threaten to exert a drag on the economy in the coming quarters,” said Gardner.

“The global economic backdrop remains challenging, with the coronavirus outbreak expected to weigh on global activity in the coming quarters. Investment is likely to remain subdued until the UK’s future global trading relationships become clearer, which is unlikely until early next year,” Gardner added. Enditem

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