Ulster University’s research is produced in partnership with the Northern Ireland Housing Executive and Progressive Building Society.
Analysing the performance of the Northern Ireland housing market between April – June 2018, the report reveals an overall average house price of £162,215, up 6.2% over the year. The volume of transactions in the survey is 2,116.
The distribution of sale prices is broadly similar to the previous quarter; the share of lower priced properties at or below £100,000 is 23% and properties sold at or below £150,000 account for 58% of transactions. Overall, the analysis by price band is indicative of a relatively stable and still affordable housing market in Northern Ireland, with price spreads relatively unchanged over the quarter.
Estate agent perceptions are reasonably positive, with properties moving and a continued demand for quality housing. The number of newly built properties is appreciably higher in this sample (n=587, 28%), notably within the semi-detached house, detached house and apartment sectors. This reflects the views of the agents that there is an increasing supply of new development coming on to the market which is helping to fuel the first time buyer market.
Lead researcher, Dr Martin Hinch from Ulster University said: “This Ulster University research provides a quarterly snapshot of the housing market, helping to inform those involved in the buying or selling process of local trends and developments.
The latest survey of the health of the Northern Ireland housing market highlights a strongly performing sector with prices up on average by 6.2% over the year and transactions being maintained at high levels.”
Michael Boyd, Progressive Deputy Chief Executive/Finance Director, and co-sponsor of the report added: “The confidence in the Northern Ireland housing market in the last year has been borne out in our latest report which has seen an average annual price increase of 6.2%, more than 3% above the rate of inflation. Sales volume and house price growth in Q2 2018 has built on the very strong start to the year which saw a 3.1% increase in the first quarter.
“There are a number of factors that supports this sustainable growth, including continued affordability in comparison to the majority of UK regions, availability of new homes within the first-time buyer market and low levels of unemployment with wages starting to gain on inflation throughout 2018.”
Karly Greene, Head of Research at the Northern Ireland Housing Executive, which co-sponsors the research, said: “Overall, the figures are indicative of a relatively healthy residential housing market, with sustainable levels of activity and house price growth, and a rising proportion of newly built properties entering the market. However, ongoing monitoring will be particularly important in the continuing climate of economic and political uncertainty, and in light of the Bank of England’s recent decision to raise the base interest rate.”