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Written by rosalind renshaw

In the 12 months to October, UK house prices increased by 5.5%, the ONS has claimed, and rose 1.4% between September and October.

The year-on-year increase reflected growth of 5.7% in England, 2% in Wales, 3.3% in Scotland and 4.8% in Northern Ireland, said the ONS, with prices in London increasing 12%.

Excluding London and the south-east, UK house prices increased by 3.1% in the 12 months to October 2013.

According to the ONS, in a story which has got today's Daily Express headline writers terribly excited ("Rising house prices hit a new record all over Britain"), house prices in October stood at £257,000 in England, £164,000 in Wales, £129,000 in Northern Ireland and £184,000 in Scotland.

The average London house price was £437,000 while the north-east had the lowest average price at £148,000.

As usual, the ONS prices are a statistical leap away from the Land Registry prices for England and Wales.

The Land Registry says that the average house price in October was £165,515 – 0.2% less than the month before (compared with the ONS’s growth of 1.4%) and 3.1% ahead of October 2012.

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