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House price growth in Belfast running at 5.8 per cent says Zoopla index

Only Leicester enjoyed a higher house price growth than Belfast last year, according to Zoopla
Gary McDonald Business Editor

BELFAST has enjoyed the second-highest annual house price growth of any major city in the UK in the last year including London, according to an index from Zoopla.

Its 5.8 per cent growth figure was eclipsed only by Leicester (6 per cent), and the survey showed that house price growth decelerated across 13 cities.

The study also revealed that homes in London take 3.5 months to sell, with buyers accepting £24,500 less than asking price, while Nottingham has the lowest discounts from asking price and shortest time to sell.

Zoopla's latest index results reveal a slowdown in the annual rate of growth across most cities - though not Belfast - as a mix of affordability pressures and uncertainty impact the pace of house price growth.

The sharpest slowdown in growth over the last 12 months has been registered in Edinburgh, Bournemouth, and Portsmouth

Richard Donnell, research and insight director at Zoopla, said: “Underlying market conditions remain strong in regional cities with the discounts from asking prices continuing to narrow as low mortgage rates and rising employment continue to stimulate demand for housing.

“But the speed of price growth has moderated on affordability pressures and increased uncertainty. Thirteen cities are recording weaker annual house price growth than at the same time a year ago.

“The current housing cycle started almost a decade ago and is unfolding at different speeds across each city driven by local factors, primarily growth in incomes and employment and overall levels of housing affordability.

“Three years ago London house prices were rising in double digits and the discount to asking price was just one per cent.

“Affordability pressures and tax changes have impacted demand for housing and the result has been a widening in discounts from asking prices as a result of price sensitive buyers and sellers reluctant to provide significant discounts.”

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