In November the index rose to 30 from 23 in October and a year low of five in July.

Drill down, and the index tracking new buyer enquiries – a good indicator of future demand – rose to plus 13, the highest reading since February, while new sales instructions – a good indicator of future supply – also rose, but from minus three to zero.

In short, demand is growing slowly, but supply even more slowly.

Another index, tracking expectations fell, as it did in the previous month.

Next year, if inflation rises as expected, then that will hit real household incomes which may have an adverse effect on the market, but on the other hand, the Bank of England seems set to keep rates at their new record low.

Hansen Lu, property economist at Capital Economics, said: "While a recovery in activity over the course of next year is likely, house price growth is unlikely to take off. For a start, house prices already look extremely expensive. And the recovery in price expectations appears to have stalled, with the balance of surveyors expecting prices to be higher in a years’ time slipping a touch for the second month running in November. In all, we think house price growth will continue to slow through next year, ending 2017 at perhaps 2% year on year.