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Tories may 'speed up' decline in negative equity rates

By Margaret Canning

Published 14/05/2015

The number of negative equity homes here has fallen by around one-third in the last two years, from a peak of 71,857 in 2013 to 56,034 at the start of this year
The number of negative equity homes here has fallen by around one-third in the last two years, from a peak of 71,857 in 2013 to 56,034 at the start of this year

A recent decline in the number of homes in negative equity in Northern Ireland could speed up under the new Conservative Government, it has been claimed.

Housing data group HML said the new Government could be seen as bringing stability to the economy - leading to an improvement UK-wide in negative equity figures.

However, house prices in Northern Ireland have been recovering at a very gradual pace compared to the rest of the UK.

According to HML, the number of negative equity homes here has fallen by around one-third in the last two years, from a peak of 71,857 in 2013 to 56,034 at the start of this year.

However, between the beginning of 2011 and the start of 2015, the number of homes in negative equity increased by 27.4%, making it the only UK region where the issue has gotten worse.

Northern Ireland has suffered the UK's worst negative equity levels due to the up to 60% slump in house prices here between 2008 and 2013 - leaving many householders in properties worth significant less than the amount they originally borrowed by pay for it.

Northern Ireland had a negative equity level of 35% - the worst in the UK - in 2013.

A HML spokesman said: "With the Conservatives winning the UK general election, many in the residential property sector may see this as providing continued stability - and this could support a continued decline in negative equity. Nationally, house prices continue to increase."

Belfast Telegraph

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