Over the last five years, house price inflation in the UK was 90 per cent. In Spain the inflation rate was 100 per cent, but everywhere else in the Eurozone, and in North America and Australia, it was lower – or so says the Halifax.

France enjoyed the third-highest house price inflation rate – says the Halifax – 73 per cent over the last five years, and Ireland saw 71 per cent. The Eurozone average was 40 per cent, and in Germany house prices fell by 5 per cent.

Meanwhile, down under, house price inflation over the last five years was 54 per cent, and in Canada and the US it was 36 per cent.

The average price of a house in the UK at the end of 2006 was£187,100. Houses were more expensive in the Netherlands and Ireland, but much cheaper elsewhere. For example, the average price in the US in 2006 was£132,600, and in France it was £119,300.

house prices international

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