By Matt Ayres

House prices will rise at a much slower rate than in 2014, according to forecasts from the Office of National Statistics (ONS).

Property prices rose astronomically in 2014, but are only likely to see a 1.5% increase over the next year.

The annual rate of house price inflation fell to 7.2% in February, down from 8.4% in January and the lowest rate for more than a year.

Jonathan Samuels, chief executive of Dragonfly Property Finance, commented on the cooling UK housing market: "Prices edged up slightly in February but the annual rate of growth continued to fall. But is this necessarily a bad thing?

"In certain areas of the UK, few would deny that the market got ahead of itself. With this in mind, the return to more sustainable levels of growth should be seen as a positive.

"We expect the market to tick over until the General Election is behind us, with activity levels more or less equivalent to recent months."