Belfast Telegraph

Northern Ireland house prices grew by just 2% over last decade, report finds

Northern Ireland house prices grew by just 2% in the last decade, analysis has found
Northern Ireland house prices grew by just 2% in the last decade, analysis has found

By Caitriona Mc Bride

Northern Ireland house prices grew by just 2% in the last decade, analysis has found.

Across the UK, property values increased by a third (33%) across the whole of the 2010s, Nationwide Building Society said. During the 1980s they surged by 180%.

Prices here surged during the 2000s and peaked in 2007 before the market crashed.

Nationwide said prices here grew by 23% in the 1980s, then by 115% in the 1990s and by 123% in the 2000s.

Growth slowed to just 2% in the most recent decade.

Nationwide Building Society's latest house price index released last week said the average house price in Northern Ireland was £141,015.

Andrew Webb, chief economist at Grant Thornton, said the low level of growth over the past 10 years was not a cause for disappointment, particularly for those struggling to get on the property ladder.

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"I would take a more positive spin on this report," he said.

"If you look at it like Northern Ireland is at the bottom of the league, which is not an uncommon thing for Northern Ireland, then it can be seen as negative.

"However, if you put it into context, we had a massive decline after the crash at the beginning of the decade until things turned around in 2014.

"There has been steady growth since."

"If the goal is getting a good roof over your head then you have more chance with lower rates.

"If the supply of new housing coming on stream is sustainable and affordable it is a more hospitable market and way for people to get on the property ladder."

Mr Webb said that local house prices had been on a "crazy road" over the last 15-20 years but that things were much more reliable and predictable now.

"We had phenomenal growth in the 2000s and then a massive crash," he added.

"Things are much more consistent now and it makes for decent affordability."

Low mortgage rates have helped to keep people's monthly mortgage repayments relatively affordable across the UK.

Average interest rates for new mortgages have fallen from around 5% in 2009 to 2.4% currently, the report said.

This report follows a recent report by Halifax showing that the value of houses in Newry, Mourne and Down saw the smallest percentage increase in the UK over the past 20 years.

Around 20 years ago the average house in the district cost just £78,843. By 2019 the average price was £162,222, putting it firmly at the bottom of the UK-wide table.

Belfast Telegraph

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