Northern Ireland – strongest performing UK region!

HOUSE prices in Northern Ireland are 14.3 per cent higher than last year, according to a new index from Nationwide.

The building society put the average price paid for a home here during the third quarter of 2021 at £167,103, representing a two per cent rise on the second quarter.

The index, which is based on Nationwide’s own lending data, identified Northern Ireland as the strongest performing UK region alongside Wales for the July to September period.

Property insiders say the market here remained strong over the summer, despite the winding down of the stamp duty holiday.

HMRC recorded 2,780 residential property deals in the north during August, 290 more than during July.

From October 1, anyone who is not a first-time buyer will pay two per cent stamp duty on any part of the purchase price between £125,000 and £250,000.

First time buyers will remain exempt from paying stamp duty on properties valued up to £300,000, and pay just five per cent on deals between £300,001 and £500,000.

Janet Williamson from Belfast law firm O’Reilly Stewart Solicitors said the volume of deals her property team is dealing with suggests activity in the housing market will remain strong for the next few months.

“Activity has been high as people try to make as much saving as possible before the end of the stamp duty holiday. In these final few days before the stamp duty holiday ends, we have close to 30 house completions in one week which is unprecedented for this time of the year.

“What is notable is that we are not seeing a drop off in new instruction conveyancing levels following the end of the stamp duty holiday,” said Ms Williamson.

“The levels of completions scheduled are very significant over the next seven or eight weeks.

“This suggests that the stamp duty holiday, while undoubtedly having supported the market, had less of a direct impact than first thought with market conditions, and that the market in general is expected to remain buoyant in the short term at least.”


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