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Northern Ireland’s Residential Property Market: A Quarter of Measured Growth

The Northern Ireland (NI) residential property market has exhibited a modest yet significant recovery in the third quarter of 2023.
According to the latest House Price Index report released by Land & Property Services and the Northern Ireland Statistics & Research Agency, the period from July to September 2023 witnessed a gradual upturn in property prices, contrasting the fluctuating trends observed in previous quarters.

Overview of Market Performance

The NI House Price Index, a key barometer of residential property prices, reported a 3.1% increase between the second and third quarters of 2023. This growth reflects an overall annual increase of 2.1% compared to the third quarter of 2022. Notably, the average house price in Northern Ireland now stands at £179,530, with regional variations ranging from £160,396 in Fermanagh and Omagh to £207,824 in Lisburn and Castlereagh.

A total of 5,524 residential properties were sold during this quarter, indicating a steady volume of transactions in the market. These figures are expected to be revised upwards in subsequent reports, factoring in late returns and new entries into the NI Valuation List.

Local Government District Trends

The NI House Price Index shows a diverse range of trends across local government districts. The index value for Northern Ireland as a whole was 161.8, with individual districts showing varied performances. Notable increases were observed in districts like Armagh City, Banbridge, and Craigavon, which saw a 5.4% rise, while Ards and North Down experienced a 1.0% decrease, remaining relatively stable over the past 12 months.

Methodological Rigour

The House Price Index is derived using the price of a standardised property, based on residential property sales recorded by HMRC for Stamp Duty purposes. This comprehensive approach ensures that the Index remains a reliable and accurate measure of the residential property market’s performance, offering insights that are crucial for policy makers, economic commentators, and property professionals alike.

The Broader UK Context

The NI House Price Index forms a vital component of the overall UK House Price Index. Data from Northern Ireland is combined quarterly with GB data to present a comprehensive UK-wide picture. This integration underscores the importance of Northern Ireland’s housing market in the broader UK context, providing valuable insights for national and regional economic analysis.

The third quarter of 2023 marks a period of cautious optimism for Northern Ireland’s residential property market. With the House Price Index now 61.8% higher than the reference period of Q1 2015, the market is demonstrating resilience and a potential for steady growth. As the market navigates the complexities of economic and regional variances, the insights provided by the House Price Index will continue to be invaluable for understanding the dynamics of Northern Ireland’s property landscape.

The detailed report and further statistical analysis are available on the Department of Finance and NISRA websites, offering in-depth insights into the evolving patterns of the Northern Ireland residential property market.

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