East Belfast is a highly sought-after area and saw the biggest house price increase in Belfast.
The statistics in this report were supplied by Ulster University House Price Index in partnership with Propertynews.com, the Progressive Building Society and the Northern Ireland Housing Executive on a quarterly basis. The report compares sales activity from April to June 2021 with the same period last year. Read more about house prices in East Belfast.
Average House Price Now £208,349
Values for all house types except for apartments were up in the second quarter compared to the same time last year with the average price of a house there rising to £208,349 from £188,651.
With outdoor space continuing to be on the top of most movers wish lists, apartments were the only properties to drop in value by -4.37%, from £138,125 to £132,096.
A huge increase in first-time buyers has also driven the market and pushed prices up in the area.
Expert Market Opinion
While the initial surge in demand for property when the first lockdown ended last June has somewhat abated, it continues to be strong as Sam Dickey, partner with Simon Brien Residential, explains: “Even though we couldn’t do any viewings we had large numbers of people inquiring about properties and trying to move house.
“When we reopened on June 15 we were overwhelmed and could have had as many as 85 viewings for one property, but we had to draw the line and limit numbers.
“A semi in the east of the city valued at £139,500 sold for £156,000 last June and today that same semi would be on the market for £157,500.”
Market Analysis of House Prices in East Belfast
East Belfast has been one of the city’s most up and coming residential areas in recent years.
It offers easy access to public parks and The Greenway and has some of the best schools in Belfast. It also has good transport to the city centre and is close to the airport and the Ulster Hospital.
The trendy eateries and shops of Ballyhackamore and Belmont villages have also made this a sought-after area to live in. It is a mixed area attracting all denominations.
And it’s not just locals it is attracting but people from all over the world and especially England as John Minnis of John Minnis Estate Agents explains: “Not only have we ex-pats coming back from England but a lot of English people choosing to relocate here.
“Practically every property I have put on the market has had interest from someone outside of Northern Ireland. English families are attracted by our lifestyle, education and house prices.
“In the last 12 months I have sold properties to ex-pats from all over the world — Dubai, Hong Kong, Belgium, America and Australia. We also now have grandparents of English families wanting to come here to be near their grandchildren.”
DEMAND OUTSTRIPPING SUPPLY
And as demand outstrips supply, the new Carrowreagh development of mixed house types in Dundonald has unsurprisingly proved particularly popular.
Sam says: “First time buyers were very noticeable after the first lockdown and have continued to drive the market.
“People had deposits saved and the stamp duty holiday was a huge incentive.
“Carrowreagh was our biggest seller in 2020 as the area doesn’t have enough new houses.
“The initial surge in demand has abated and things turned to a more normal pace in the second quarter of this year. As long as demand continues to outstrip supply prices will rise and I don’t see that changing anytime soon.”
People trading up in search of outdoor space and room for a home office has seen detached houses in east Belfast rise the most from April to June compared to the same time last year.
The average cost of a detached house in this part of the city rose by 10.78% from £299,145 to £331,380.
While apartments dropped in value, Sam says that they are still very much in demand.
He adds: “We are still selling apartments with balconies as people want outdoor spaces.
“Covid-19 is going to be with us for a while and people don’t want to keep working from the kitchen table.”
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The full results will also be published in a 12 page section in the Belfast Telegraph on Saturday 21st August.