The rooftops of houses with an orange sky behind them. Image used in the Housing market in Northern Ireland is gaining strength blog post
13 August 2020

Housing market in Northern Ireland is gaining strength


According to a key survey, the housing market in Northern Ireland has bounced back after a 3-month lockdown with a rebound in activity and interest.

Today’s report from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) and Ulster Bank highlighted that there has been a rise in enquiries from new buyers and an increase in new sales.

Samuel Dickey, RICS Northern Ireland residential property spokesman said: “July saw a big increase in market activity driven primarily by first-time buyers along with sales now going through that were held up by the market restrictions.

“We have also seen a shift in people’s preferences, from wanting larger outdoor space to a bigger living space.

“There is pent up demand from people post lockdown wanting change.

“Encouragingly more properties have also been listed for sale, yet we are still experiencing the long-standing problem of not having enough supply to meet the demand.”

Managing director of estate agency CPS, Art O’Hagan, highlighted: “The market presently is very buoyant with buyers and new instructions and we feel this will continue.”

Mr O’Hagan also said that lenders are no longer asking for larger deposits from buyers.

“Some high street lenders are now funding up to a 90% loan to value as opposed to 85% one month ago.

“We are certainly very aware of the unemployment that is likely to arise when government-led subsidies are reduced or withdrawn, but the genuine cash purchasers with significant deposits gives us significant reassurance of stability in the marketplace in the short to medium term.”

Head of personal banking at Ulster Bank, Terry Robb, stated: “As a bank, we remain strongly committed to supporting people to buy their own home, to move house and to remortgage and will continue to lend in a responsible way that enables people to do so and supports market activity.

“As part of this, we are offering a range of competitive rates, and our paperless mortgage application process is proving increasingly popular with customers.”

Keep up to date with the housing market in Northern Ireland on the blog.

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