House prices in Northern Ireland will see growth of around four percent in 2014
The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors has predicted.
In its annual housing market forecast, the organisation places Northern Ireland at the bottom of the UK league table for price growth. Overall, house prices in the UK will see an increase of eight percent over the course of next year with London to record the highest rate of growth, it said.
RICS predicts the cost of a home will jump by around 11 percent in London while the North East and Northern Ireland will experience the lowest rises with prices increasing by five percent and four percent respectively.
RICS Northern Ireland housing spokesman, Tom McClelland, said the Northern Ireland market is markedly different from the rest of the UK: "Northern Ireland house prices are now 54% below their peak, and whilst Northern Ireland prices rose above the UK average in mid-2007, they are now around half the UK average, according to DCLG figures. Instances of negative equity have also continued to increase in Northern Ireland whilst falling in the rest of the UK."
However, the second half of 2013 saw some improvements in the market, with a second successive rise in prices in Q3 and a year-on-year rise in prices for the first time in almost six years. Transactions also increased in Q3 according to the NI Residential Property Price Index, by 7 percent. This represented a 12 percent increase on Q3 2012," he added."We expect these improvements to continue into 2014 with prices and transactions continuing to edge higher from their current low levels as confidence and demand increase."