House prices have fallen by 1.9% since March this year.

But official figures from the UK House Price Index for April also show an annual increase of 8.9%. That brings the cost of the average property in the UK to £250,772.

The government property figures – which are compiled by the Office of National Statistics – are calculated on the basis of actual house sale transactions which have gone through. Other Indices measure asking prices or valuations based on mortgage offers so are not quite the same realistic gauge of the property market at the time.

“The slight loss of momentum in the housing market in April reflects the fact that house prices had been inflated in March as buyers rushed to purchase a property before the original end date of the temporary increase in stamp duty to £500K,” said Samuel Tombs, chief UK economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics.

The fact that in Scotland the Stamp Duty threshold reverted to its normal rates in March and house prices fell 4.1%, makes analysts believe a similar scenario will occur in England and Wales in the autumn.

North East sees highest growth

In England the North East pays witness to the biggest annual rise in property values with growth of 16.9%. The average house or apartment there is now valued at £144,032. Property in London has seen the lowest increase, at just 3.3%. It means the average property in the capital is now valued at £491,687.

Wales too has experienced large house price growth, with an annual rise of 15.6%. That brings the cost of the average property there to £185,041.

Semi-detached homes grow most in value

The cost of semi-detached properties increased most in England, with a 10.3% rise. That brought the cost of the typical semi-detached house to £255,589. Terraced houses rose by 9.7% to £219,577. Detached homes were up 9.4% in value to £412,888, while the increase for flats was less than half of semi-detached homes, at 4.7%. The average flat in England, now costing around £230,172.

The average cost of a first-time buyer property is £224,786 – an increase of 9% over the past 12 months. New Build properties have gone up by 10.8% to £333,823.

London sees almost non-existent growth in flats

In London semi-detached homes were also the biggest riser, with an increase of 7% to £626,412. The value of flats rose least, with just a 0.6% increase, making the cost of the average flat in the capital £415,006.

A similar pattern developed in Wales, with semi-detached homes experiencing the biggest price growth (16.8% to £181,164). Flats saw the lowest rise here too, with 12.3% to £124,317.

Repossessions start post-lockdown

There were 138 house repossessions in England in February this year. The highest number – 30 was in the North West. Next highest was the North East with 23 and third was the South East with 20. There were 18 house repossessions in London. Wales had nine.

Data for the UK House Price Index comes from HM Land Registry, Registers of Scotland, Land & Property Services/Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency and the Valuation Office Agency.