House prices climbed for the seventh straight month in January, but at their slowest rate for six, the Halifax says.
The slight increase of 0.6% brings the average cost of a home in the UK to £169,777.
Although January's rise was smaller than in recent months, year-on-year house prices spiked at 3.6% last month and were 9.9% above the low reached in April 2009.
Halifax housing economist Martin Ellis says: "The marked reduction in interest rates over the past 15 months has, from a low base, boosted housing demand from those with a sufficient deposit to enter the market.
"Increased demand has combined with a low supply of properties available for sale to push up prices."
However, the increasing numbers of people putting their houses up for sale to take advantage of the upsurge is expected to help keep prices under control.
"Overall, our current view is that house prices will be flat during 2010," Ellis says.
‘Important to have an anchor’
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