LONDON, Jan. 8 (Xinhua) -- British house prices rose by 5.7 percent in 2013, said Halifax, the country's largest mortgage lender. The company expects another price advance this year, as the economic recovery strengthens.
House prices in the final quarter of 2013 were 1.9 percent higher than in the previous three month, with a 0.6 percent decline in December, data showed.
Compared to the same period a year earlier, British house prices in the three months to December were 7.5 percent higher. The increase was slightly lower than in November (7.7 percent), figure showed by Halifax.
Home sales rose for the seventh successive month in November last year to 96,980, which was 24 percent higher than in November 2012, said Halifax.
"We expect house prices to continue to rise this year, most likely at a broadly similar pace to 2013. Price nationally are forecast to increase in range of between 4 percent and 8 percent in 2014," said the mortgage lender.
Martin Ellis, housing economist at Halifax, commented that: "mounting signs that the economic recovery is becoming firmly established, together with a predicted decline in unemployment, should further boost consumer confidence over the coming months. This will increase the likelihood that more people will consider buying a property in 2014, therefore support housing demand."
But as earnings again fail to keep pace with consumer price inflation, British household finances will continue to be under pressure, thus the houses demand is expected to be constrained, added Ellis.