Average house price on the up

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THE average house price in Craigavon is now £138,125, according to the latest survey.

This represents a significant improvement on the first quarter of the year when the average price was £105,898.

The latest University of Ulster Quarterly House Price Index produced in partnership with Bank of Ireland and the Northern Ireland Housing Executive, showed the number of transactions provincewide between April and June rose to 1,062 compared to 925 in the first quarter of 2011.

Over the year there is evidence of improved market performance, however, the low level of transactions may distort the overall average price.

The semi-detached house market in Craigavon showed an average of £113,100 and provides an example of how the market can swing with price levels down by 3.1% over the year but up by 4.5% over the quarter.

The overall average price of a house in Northern Ireland in the second quarter was £137,814, a decrease of over 15% on the same time a year ago. Quarterly performance is also weaker, with a weighted price decline of 2.4% in the second quarter compared to the first three months of 2011.

According to the authors of the report Professor Alastair Adair, Professor Stanley McGreal and Dr David McIlhatton: “The findings of the current survey highlight evidence of higher demand levels in the Northern Ireland housing market with transaction volumes at their highest level since the end of 2007 as purchasers avail of the current affordability and value for money in the local market.”

They said: “The continuing growth in transactions is welcome news for the local market and while there is still some considerable distance to travel it is a positive pointer towards the first signs of recovery in the local market. The expectation is that as demand starts to return to the market that price levels will follow but with an inevitable time lag.”