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Northern Ireland Housing Market Maintains Steady Growth In Prices

09 May, 2018

The Northern Ireland housing market has continued to experience a steady rate of price growth in Q1 2018 despite a slight decrease in sales volume, according to Ulster University’s latest Quarterly House Price Index report.

Ulster University’s research is produced in partnership with the Northern Ireland Housing Executive and Progressive Building Society.

Analysing the performance of the housing market during January, February and March 2018, the overall average price for the first quarter of 2018 was £163,621, representing an annual increase of 6.6% relative to the first quarter of 2017.

However, allowing for differences in sample mix by property type, the weighted increase over the year is 4%, indicating real growth in sale price above the rate of inflation.

The average house price for Northern Ireland is also higher over the quarter with a 3.4% simple percentage increase relative to the final quarter of 2017 or in weighted terms, allowing for changes in sample mix, a rise of 3.1%.

The distribution of sale prices is broadly similar to the previous quarter although the share of lower priced properties at or below £100,000 has decreased to 22% of the sample.

Likewise, the market share by property type remains broadly consistent with previous reports. Semi-detached houses continue to be the dominant sector, accounting for more than one third of all transactions (35%, n=638).

Sales volumes are lower for the first quarter of 2018, almost certainly reflecting seasonality in the market and the relatively adverse weather conditions that prevailed in the opening months of 2018. The volume of transactions in the survey is 1,842 compared with 2,219 in Q4 2017.

Lead researcher, Professor Stanley McGreal from Ulster University said:

“The latest survey of the housing market in Northern Ireland indicates a steady rate of price increase of 4% annually and 3.1% over the last quarter. These rates of growth, above the general level of inflation, can provide confidence to both home-owners and potential purchasers regarding the value of their investments while still maintaining affordability in the local housing market.”

Michael Boyd, Progressive Deputy Chief Executive and Finance Director added:

“The seasonal impact on sales within the housing market in Q4 2017 has been offset by a strong start to 2018.  Prices across most house types and regions are up in Q1 2018, representing steady but sustainable growth as the report measures an increase in sale price above the rate of inflation. The consumer squeeze that had been building throughout 2017 has eased, with inflation falling against the backdrop of rising wages, which has boosted spending power for local households.”

The full report can be found here.

Market share by type of property

Market sector Market Share
Terrace/townhouse 20%
Semi-detached house 35%
Detached house 24%
Semi-detached bungalow 3%
Detached  bungalow 8%
Apartment 10%


Performance by Property Type 

Market sector Annual % Change Quarterly % Change Average Price    Q1  2018
Terrace/townhouse 2.8% 2.5% £103,518
Semi-detached house 3.6% 0.2% £148,894
Detached house 3.7% 4.8% £248,680
Semi-detached bungalow -0.5% -4.7% £111,578
Detached bungalow -0.8% -0.1% £176,864
Apartment 15.8% 13.2% £136,465


Performance by Region

Location Average Price


2018 Q1

Northern Ireland – All £163,621
Belfast-All £175,908
North Belfast £127,889
South Belfast £225,101
East Belfast £182,540
West Belfast £130,098
North Down £186,416
Lisburn £181,694
East Antrim £151,906
L’Derry/Strabane £118,970
Antrim Ballymena £137,456
Coleraine/Limavady/North Coast £156,365
Enniskillen/Fermanagh/S.Tyrone £132,290
Mid Ulster £145,231
Mid and South Down £164,955
Craigavon/Armagh £136,567

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