166 per cent increase in house prices

Research from the lender has found the average price of a new property in the UK cost £70,518 ten years ago, but now costs an average £153,010. In the South West and Greater London the increase was over 154 per cent, but in Scotland (the smallest increase) the rise was only 48 per cent.

Other key findings were that there are less new homes being built now than there was ten years ago, some 4 per cent lower than in the previous year and in fact lower than in any other year since 1950.

Martin Ellis, economist at Halifax Estate Agents, said: "Despite the obvious popularity of new homes there has been a clear shortage of new properties available on the market over the past year, which has undoubtedly contributed to the recent rapid rise in house prices.

"The rate of house building must increase significantly from last year’s record low in order to meet the requirements for extra homes over the coming 20 years."