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RICS: House prices rise in NI

Sam Cordon

November 12, 2013

A net balance of 38% of respondents to the survey said that prices were up in the three months to the end of October (43% saying that they were higher in the period, 52% saying that they were the same and 5% saying that they were down).

This follows positive data in the June, July, August and September surveys – the first time since the property price peak that there has been five months in a row of a price balance above zero.

Northern Ireland’s experience in October was in keeping with the experience across the UK in terms of rising prices.

UK house prices jumped again, with a net balance of 57% of respondents reporting price rises in the October survey – an eleven-year high.

The evidence from a range of indicators is that the improved performance of the local economy has been sustained into the autumn, and this appears to be the case for the housing market as well.

With prices down around 55% from their peak, this provides significantly improved affordability, despite stagnating wages. Historically low interest rates, which are unlikely to rise for the next 12 months, also continue to be a factor.

Anecdotal evidence from a range of sources suggest that strong interest from buyers does not appear to be abating.

Tom McClelland, housing spokesman for RICS Northern Ireland, said: “A greater sense of realism is evident in property values, both on the part of sellers and buyers, which will act to encourage interest and activity.

“Ulster Bank is committed to playing its role in the market, through the continued development of our mortgage range, our team of mortgage specialists covering Northern Ireland, and our involvement in the Co-Ownership scheme.

Derek Wilson, head of lending products at Ulster Bank, added: “A greater sense of realism is evident in property values, both on the part of sellers and buyers, which will act to encourage interest and activity.

“Ulster Bank is committed to playing its role in the market, through the continued development of our mortgage range, our team of mortgage specialists covering Northern Ireland, and our involvement in the Co-Ownership scheme.”


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