The revival of the housing market last autumn indicated by the recovery in mortgage lending as well as surveys by Halifax and Nationwide was even more marked than previously thought.
Detailed figures from the Land Registry published this morning show the number of property sales in England and Wales on the final three months of 2005 was 12.6 per cent higher than the same months of 2004.
The average price rose 4.6 per cent to £191,327. The trend was less marked in the West Midlands where transactions rose by 5.4 per cent year on year to 10,081, with prices up 1.9 per cent.
The detached house market was stronger than others. Their average price rose by three per cent to £264,709.
In Warwickshire, though, prices for detached homes fell by two per cent against the trend to an average of £305,639. Flats were cheaper down 1.6 per cent at £132,759.
As a result the average for Warwickshire declined, but less than one per cent.
In England and Wales, the number of homes sold for more than £1 million increased to 948, up from 765 during the final three months of 2004.
Prices rose furthest in the North with a year-on-year jump of 8.5 per cent, followed by the North West with 7.7 per cent and Yorkshire and the Humber at 6.9 per cent.
Prices also climbed strongly in Wales with a 6.3 per cent increase. In Greater London they rose 4.5 per cent, and by 3.1 per cent in the South East. The capital also saw a 15 per cent increase in the number of properties changing hands.
The cheapest place to buy is Kingston-upon-Hull, with the average home costing £82,102. Homes are most expensive in Kensington and Chelsea, at an average of £752,760.