House prices continue to fall but sales increase

By Kieran Hughes

Continuing falling house prices are leading to an increase in sales in North Belfast according to a local estate agent. Laura McMillan, from McMillan Estate Agents in Glengormley, was speaking after the publication of the latest RICS (Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors) and Ulster Bank Housing Market Survey’s this week.

The report found that across the North prices are continuing to fall, but at a lower rate than previous months.

Laura McMillan said there is great value to be had in North Belfast and if buyers can get the deposits required, then houses are selling.

“The market in North Belfast is better in terms of transactions,” she said. “Prices remain low and transactions are increasing, which is positive. The lower end of the market is showing particular activity and first time buyers and the highest amount of transactions are around the £100,000 mark.”

She added that investors were also taking advantage of the lower prices and the rental potential in North Belfast. But she said it was too hard to predict whether the bottom of the market has been reached in North Belfast.

RICS Northern Ireland spokesman, Tom McClelland, said across the North the average prices “continue to come under downward pressure, although there will continue to be regional and property-type variation”.

“The indications for transaction volumes are more positive, though economic conditions this year will likely prevent any significant recovery,” he said.

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