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First-time buyers face surge in house prices

The average cost of a first home rose by 10.7% in a year. Credit: Chris Ison/PA Wire

First-time buyers face having to pay 10.7% more to get on the property ladder than they did a year ago, new figures show.

The typical starter home now costs £199,000, according to the Office for National Statistics.

The news follows calls for the Bank of England to take action against spiraling values, with some urging a dilution of the controversial Help to Buy scheme for buyers with lower deposits.

The Government says the scheme is working as intended to reach people who need its help the most.

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PM: Inflation fall means 'more stability'

Prime Minister David Cameron has welcomed the fall in CPI inflation to 1.5%, tweeting that it means "more stability and financial security for everyone".

Inflation at lowest level since 2009

The fall in the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) measure of inflation to 1.5% marks the lowest in four-and-a-half years.

Falls in the cost of transport services, particularly air fares, were the largest contributor to the fall, the Office for National Statistics has said.

Heavy discounting by supermarkets also provided a large downward effect.

CPI equalled the rate seen in October 2009. It was last lower, at 1.1%, in September 2009.

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Labour: Inflation figures show govt 'complacent'

Labour said the Government is "complacent about the cost-of-living" crisis after inflation rose to 1.8% today which stalled hopes for a pick-up in real terms wages.

These figures underline why this Tory-led government is wrong to be so complacent about the cost-of-living crisis.

Wages after inflation have fallen by an average of £1,600 a year since 2010 and the link between the wealth of the nation and family finances is broken. A huge turnaround is needed to ensure working people aren’t worse off than when David Cameron came to office.

While the Tories try to deny it even exists, Labour has a clear plan to deal with the cost-of-living crisis and earn our way to higher living standards for all, not just a few at the top.

– Catherine McKinnell, Labour’s Shadow Treasury Minister
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