House prices increased slightly in Herefordshire in December, new figures show.

The boost contributes to the longer-term trend, which has seen property prices in the area achieve 1.5 per cent annual growth.

The average Herefordshire house price in December was £242,115, Land Registry figures show – a 0.3 per cent increase on November.

That is well above the £201,343 for the West Midlands and £234,742 for the UK.

West Midlands prices fell 0.4 per cent in December.

Over the last year, the average sale price of property in Herefordshire rose by £3,600 – putting the area 20th among the West Midlands’s 30 local authorities for annual growth.

The best annual growth in the region was in Cannock Chase, where properties increased on average by 8.5 per cent, to £183,000. At the other end of the scale, properties in Malvern Hills dropped 6.3 per cent in value, giving an average price of £253,000.

Owners of detached houses saw the biggest improvement in property prices in Herefordshire in December – they increased 0.5 per cent, to £349,045 on average. Over the last year, prices rose by 1.8 per cent.

Among other types of property:

n Semi-detached: up 0.4 per cent monthly; up 2.1 per cent annually; £224,348 average

n Terraced: remained level over the month; up 1.1 per cent annually; £166,840 average

n Flats: down 0.2 per cent monthly; down 1.1 per cent annually; £117,035 average

First-time buyers in Herefordshire spent an average of £186,000 on their property – £2,200 more than a year ago, and £27,800 more than in December 2014.

By comparison, former owner-occupiers paid £274,500 – 47.6 per cent more than first-time buyers.

Buyers paid 20.3 per cent more than the average price in the West Midlands (£201,000) in December.