HOUSE prices increased slightly, by 0.4 per cent, in Dudley in February, new figures show.

The boost contributes to the longer-term trend, which has seen property prices in the area achieve 12.4 per cent annual growth.

The average Dudley house price in February was £237,582, Land Registry figures show – a 0.4 per cent increase on January.

Over the month, the picture was better than that across West Midlands, where prices decreased 0.4 per cent, and Dudley outperformed the 1 per cent drop for the UK as a whole.

Over the last year, the average sale price of property in Dudley rose by £26,000 – putting the area fifth among West Midlands’s 30 local authorities with price data for annual growth.

The best annual growth in the region was in Malvern Hills, where property prices increased on average by 12.9 per cent, to £347,000. At the other end of the scale, properties in East Staffordshire gained just 4.8 per cent in value, giving an average price of £230,000.

Owners of detached houses saw the biggest improvement in property prices in Dudley in February – they increased 0.7 per cent, to £365,467 on average. Over the last year, prices rose by 12.8 per cent.

Among other types of property:

Semi-detached: up 0.3 per cent monthly; up 12.6 per cent annually; £235,541 average Terraced: up 0.1 per cent monthly; up 12.5 per cent annually; £195,654 average

Flats: up 0.6 per cent monthly; up 10.3 per cent annually; £128,076 average

First-time buyers in Dudley spent an average of £208,000 on their property – £23,000 more than a year ago, and £60,000 more than in February 2018.

By comparison, former owner-occupiers paid £264,000 on average in February – 26.6 per cent more than first-time buyers.

How do property prices in Dudley compare?

Buyers paid 6.4 per cent less than the average price in West Midlands (£254,000) in February for a property in Dudley. Across West Midlands, property prices are lower than those across the UK, where the average cost £288,000.

The most expensive properties in West Midlands were in Stratford-on-Avon – £386,000 on average, and 1.6 times as much as more than in Dudley. Stratford-on-Avon properties cost 2.6 times as much as homes in Stoke (£146,000 average), at the other end of the scale.