Business

Rics: Fewer available houses in Northern Ireland 'mean prices will continue to rise'

A lock of housing stock in the north is expected to push prices up further.
Gary McDonald Business Editor

THE flow of new house listings coming on to the market continues to fall in Northern Ireland, property agents say.

And with noticeably fewer homes now available for sale, that will have a major impact on sales and push up prices over the next three months.

Findings in the Rics/Ulster Bank residential market survey show that sales activity held up in August.

A third of respondents said there was an increase in newly agreed sales, though they expect this to moderate over the months ahead.

In terms of supply and demand, 19 per cent of respondents indicated that there was a rise in new buyer enquiries in August.

But with just 4 per cent of agents given instructions to sell, surveyors indicated that there was less stock available for them to choose from.

One respondent to the survey said: “New instructions are very low and the demand for some types of property like bungalows is manic. I have never known the supply of property to be so short.”

Rics' regional property spokesman Samuel Dickey said: “In many respects the market is normalising at the minute, post-Covid and as the government’s stamp duty holiday is tapered out.

“But whilst the market has eased relative to an exceptionally strong stretch earlier in the year, there are still many factors likely to drive a solid market going forward including supply and demand.

“Given the real shortfall in new listings becoming available, there remains strong competition among buyers, and this is maintaining a significant degree of upward pressure on house prices.

“What’s more, prices are expected to continue to climb higher over the year to come, albeit the pace of increase is likely to ease somewhat in the months ahead.”

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