New research shows average house price for east Antrim around £133k

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The overall average price of houses in the east Antrim area is up over the year, according to new Ulster University research.

The figure of £132,705 is also up relative to the final quarter of 2016, the findings show.

Produced in partnership with the Northern Ireland Housing Executive and Progressive Building Society, the university’s research analyses performance of the province’s residential housing market between January and March 2017.

The annual rate of increase of 7.7 per cent suggests a strong performance in this market area, however at the level of individual properties there is variability of performance.

Detached houses at £234,130 in particular are commanding a much higher average price up by 10.2 per cent annually with detached bungalows £147,545 also up over the year by 4.5 per cent.

Semi-detached houses at £120,233 have a lower rate of annual increase of 1.2 per cent while in the terraced/townhouse sector at £72,691 there has been a 4.2 per cent decline in average price. The quarterly picture is more variable with only detached houses exhibiting a significant increase in average price.

For Northern Ireland as a whole the new Ulster University research reveals an overall average house price of £153,448, up 5.9 per cent over the year and less than 0.5 per cent over the quarter. This is a significant increased over the year, yet only a marginal increase over the quarter.

Lead researcher, Professor Stanley McGreal, Ulster University, said: “Our research shows that in terms of annual performance, all property types have increased in average price, however over the quarter it indicates that performance was more variable.

“At a regional level a number of areas saw an increase over the quarter, including North Down, East Antrim, Londonderry and Strabane, Antrim and Ballymena, Mid and South Down, and Craigavon and Armagh.”

Michael Boyd, Progressive deputy chief executive and finance director, added: “The Northern Ireland housing market has performed well over the last year and while uncertainty has played a factor in reduction in growth between Q4 2016 and Q1 2017, this is a seasonal period with lower transaction levels in the market annually.

“These latest figures reflect the affordability there is in the housing market in Northern Ireland and despite political upheaval, the economy has shown its resilience with activity having grown by 2.1 per cent in the last quarter of 2016 and unemployment falling. “Looking forward, the economic fundamentals remain firm for house buyers with affordability, low mortgage rates and unemployment. Political and economic stability will further support market progress.”

The Northern Ireland Housing Executive, which funds the research, has also commissioned Ulster University to research the performance of the private rental market. 

Karly Greene, the Housing Executive’s head of research and equality, commented: “In spite of continued uncertainty associated with various local and national issues, the latest House Price Index survey and the most recent report on the Performance of the Private Rental Market in Northern Ireland suggest that both the house sales and rental markets remain relatively stable. 

“This research is also consistent with the preliminary findings of the NIHE 2016 House Condition Survey, which were published in March 2017 and confirmed that the private rented sector continued to grow over the last five years, albeit at a slower rate. 

“It is vital that we continue to monitor trends and developments across the housing market in order to gain a clear picture of the dynamics at work and inform planning and future policy.”

The full report can be viewed at ulster.ac.uk/housing-market-reports