Belfast Property Market 2018 - ReviewPosted on 17 December 2018
Well, what a busy quarter it has been for the team here at Pinpoint Property. The past few weeks we have been busy photographing the final properties going on the market before Christmas, before the decorations go up. This has coincided with a successful Property Awards season that we have told you all about recently.
In the past few weeks, we have seen the NI House Price Index released for Q3 showing NI house prices increasing from Q2 by a healthy 2.3%. Belfast, with an average property price of £129,203, saw year on year house prices out-perform the NI average with an annual increase of 5.4%.
Current market conditions in the Greater Belfast area are being driven by wider political turbulence. Our Managing Director, Nick Brennan gives us his update: “Uncertainty over Brexit and the lack of a sitting executive in Stormont I believe are continuing to affect the mood of buyers and sellers, but people still want and need to move and we are still seeing prices increase with one or two areas in Belfast breaking their previously held caps on what would normally be achieved.”
Looking at individual markets within Belfast, we are seeing robust performance for those looking at getting on the first rung of the ladder. Nick states that “The top and bottom of the market are strong, with an increasing number of first-time buyers. Our feeling is that this increase in first-time buyers who are looking at co-ownership are positively resulting in more of the middle market moving.”
The significant Buy-to-Let market has seen subdued activity recently. “We have seen fewer sales to buy to lt investors, however in the same breath, there are less properties for sale in the lower price brackets that many small investors usually budget for.”
The question we are constantly being asked ourselves at present is what is our thoughts on the 2019 property market in Belfast? Looking ahead there is no doubt that we need a swift and satisfactory economic conclusion to the Brexit process and any prolonged period of uncertainty will not help the market. As residential estate agents we sometimes feel too much importance is often given to Brexit. Whether it happens or not, life goes on and people still have the same housing needs they did before. If you have outgrown your current house now, if your house is more than you can manage now, if you want to set up your first home now, then make your move now - and make it with Pinpoint!
Slow but steady is still the phrase we would use to describe our 2019 house price forecast with plenty of opportunity for home buyers, sellers, tenants and landlords alike. There is still a while to go until we return to Northern Ireland price levels set in 2007 but five years of steady, consistent gains since 2013 look to continue.