UK house prices reached a record high in April as stamp duty holiday continued to provide impetus to the property market, data from Lloyds Bank subsidiary Halifax and IHS Markit showed on Monday.

House prices grew 1.4 percent month-on-month in April, following a 1.1 percent rise in March. The average property was valued at GBP 258,204.

On a yearly basis, house prices growth accelerated to 8.2 percent from 6.5 percent a month ago. This was the highest annual rate in five years.

In three months to April, house prices were 0.9 percent higher than in the preceding three months.

The stamp duty holiday magnified the shortage of available property for sale as buyers aim to take advantage of the government scheme, Russell Galley, Managing Director at Halifax, said. Nonetheless, the influence of the stamp duty holiday will fade gradually over months ahead as it is tapered out.

“There is growing optimism in the long-term outlook of the UK economy as the vaccination programme continues at pace, yet we remain cautious about the medium-term prospects of the housing market,” Galley said.

“As we said in March, the current levels of uncertainty and potential for higher unemployment as furlough support ends leads us to believe that house price growth will slow to the end of the year,” Galley added.

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