The average UK house price increased by 1.1% over the year to February 2020, according to the latest data from the Office of National Statistics (ONS).
The data, published by the HM Land Registry, showed that house prices have fallen by 0.6% since January 2020, however.
The ONS said that there has been a general slowdown in UK house price growth over the past three years, driven mainly by a slowdown in the south and east of England.
The average UK house price was £230,000 in February 2020, which is £2,000 higher than in February 2019.
On a non-seasonally adjusted basis, average house prices in the UK decreased by 0.6% between January 2020 and February 2020, compared with a decrease of 0.3% in the same period a year ago.
On a seasonally adjusted basis, average house prices in the UK decreased by 0.3% between January 2020 and February 2020, following an increase of 0.3% in the previous month.
In England, average house prices increased 0.8% over the year to £246,000. Wales prices rose 3.4% to £164,000, while in Scotland the average price was up 2.5% to £151,000.
Northern Ireland house prices also increased 2.5% over the year. The country remains the cheapest UK country to purchase a property in, with the average house price at £140,000.
London was the English region with the highest annual house price growth, with prices increasing by 2.3% to £477,000 in the year to February 2020, up from 1.3% in January 2020.
This was reportedly caused by a “base effect”, as the average house price decreased by 0.9% between January 2019 and February 2019, but increased by 0.2% between January 2020 and February 2020.
The East of England saw the only negative annual growth rate with prices down 1%, the first negative annual growth rate experienced by a UK region since November 2019.
Commenting on the data, director of Benham and Reeves, Marc von Grundherr, said: “We’ve seen the level of stock entering the market drop off a cliff in many areas so to speak, and we wait with bated breath to see what impact the pandemic will have on cold hard sales.
“Unfortunately, due to the delayed nature of the reporting of completed property transactions, it shall be another month at least before we start to see any official signs of a market decline; although the latest index does suggest a slight impact already starting to show on a month to month basis.”
He added: “Demand is strong and while buyers have their hands tied at the moment, we will see an immediate uplift in activity once the lockdown is lifted.
“When this does happen, we must ensure that the nation’s army of estate agents are fit for purpose to accommodate this and that there is no bottleneck of transactions due to a lack of working professionals.”