Leading property portal, PropertyPal, has released a report summarising the 2022 Quarter 3 (Q3) Northern Ireland housing market trends. The report provides market insights surrounding house prices and rental cost uncertainty in the wake of rising mortgage rates and the cost of living pressures. The report can be accessed via the following link: https://bit.ly/3Tm6dWf
The average property price in Northern Ireland is now £193,400 – a 7.2% annual increase and 2.9% increase over the last quarter. A typical property takes on average 43 days to reach sale agreed, one day more than the equivalent period last year.
Causeway Coast and Glens has witnessed the largest annual price growth of 9.8%, with the average property price in this area now £201,500. Belfast remains the top-selling council area across the country with Botanic, Titanic, Castle, Lisnasharragh and Ormiston in the top 5 selling locations – accumulating 922 sales in Q3.
Prices in the new-build market continue to increase at stronger rates, driven by the continued impact of rising labour and material costs. The average new-build property in Northern Ireland is now £228,900, a 17.9% annual increase and 3.2% increase from last quarter.
Jordan Buchanan, Chief Economist at PropertyPal, said: “The housing market has continued its recent trend reflecting a gradual slowdown in activity, albeit continued increase in overall prices.
“The market has likely peaked as the wider economic factors weigh on activity. In recent weeks, the volatile economic climate has led to an immediate increase in interest rates from the Bank of England with further increases expected over the next 6-12 months. This will weaken affordability and reduce the pool of buyers actively engaging in the market.
“As this report shows, search traffic, enquiry demand and newly agreed sales have all fallen on this time last year, suggesting Q4 will likely show the slowdown being more pronounced. The outlook for house prices remains highly uncertain, but is also expected to see a slowdown in the rate of growth.”
With regards to the rental market, structural economic factors of undersupplied rental accommodation have continued to push typical rent prices up. The average rent in Northern Ireland is now £742 per month, a 7.8% annual increase and 2.5% increase from last quarter.
Jordan continued: “Over the last three months, there has been an average of 80 enquiries for every rental property advertised, over 4x greater than the pre-covid 19 average of 18 enquiries per property. Rising mortgage rates may also force aspiring homebuyers into the rental sector, or keep those already in the sector for a longer period of time.
“Furthermore, approximately half of landlords in Northern Ireland have at least one mortgaged property and they may be forced to pass on higher mortgage repayments through higher rents, adding to the existing pressure facing tenants. The outlook for the rental sector is concerning, particularly with a significant proportion of rental stock amongst the least well insulated as we move into the winter period with higher energy bills.”