Housing Market Ending 2017 on a High

Northern Ireland’s housing market looks set to end 2017 on a high and to enter 2018 with a healthy momentum, according to the latest report from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).

Produced with the Ulster Bank, the Residential Market Survey says house prices and sales rose firmly with surveyors expecting both prices and sales activity to increase in the three months ahead.

The main findings show a headline price balance of +40%, meaning that 40% more surveyors said that prices rose in the past three months than those who said they fell.

The price expectations balance, at +23%, remains positive and above most other UK regions, while, sales expectations data (+12%) also remains in positive territory.

Newly agreed sales (+49%) rose firmly in November, whilst there were also increases in new buyer enquiries (+33%) and new instructions to sell (+11%).

Looking further ahead, surveyors are also positive about the prospects for house prices and sales over the next 12-months, with the balance of respondents expecting both sales activity and prices to be higher in a year’s time.

However, respondents continue to report that a lack of housing stock is a challenge for the market. “Overall, 2017 has been a good year for the local housing market,” said RICS residential property Spokesman, Samuel Dickey.”

“We have seen relatively healthy rates of price increase and rising sales activity. Looking ahead to 2018, there will be a number of headwinds, including the limited supply, alongside rising inflation and the fact that interest rates are edging upwards.”

However, surveyors appear to be reasonably confident about the market in the year ahead.” Sean Murphy, MD, personal banking at Ulster Bank, said. “The RICS figures are in line with other indicators in pointing to a relatively strong year for the housing market.”

“The latest NI House Price Index, for instance, reports average prices rising 6% year-on-year, and the latest CML mortgage lending data shows that home buyers in Northern Ireland borrowed £480 million in the third quarter of the year, up 12% on the second quarter of 2017 and 20 per cent compared to the third quarter last year.”

Read more at: https://www.newsletter.co.uk/news/business/housing-market-ending-2017-on-a-high-1-8290298

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