The Lisburn & Castlereagh district has been revealed as Northern Ireland’s top property investment hotspot, with house prices in the area predicted to rise by 16% over the next five years.
This is according to research from the newly-released Barclays UK Property Predictor.
The Barclays UK Property Predictor provides a three-to-five year forecast of investment hotspots in the residential property market, revealing the areas across the UK and Northern Ireland where house prices and rental incomes are expected to rise.
The research uses factors including rental trends, employment levels and commuter behaviour as well as current house prices to create an index of property hotspots.
Research revealed that Northern Ireland’s largest increase is expected to occur in Lisburn & Castlereagh, partially due to the area’s predicted population growth (4.8% by 2021), which in turn fuels housing demand, driving prices up.
In recent years this area has already witnessed a steady rate of house price rises, with an increase in average house prices there of 24% between 2011 and 2015.
Another clear factor influencing house prices is the consistent and growing rate of employment. Over 2017-2021, Belfast is expected to experience short to medium term employment growth (1%).
This will fuel additional demand for housing in the area and with limited city centre housing, house prices in Belfast are expected to increase by 13.7% by 2021, a close second to Lisburn & Castlereagh, which is now a major commuter belt for city workers.
Jonathan Dobbin, Head of Wealth and Investment Management, Barclays NI, said: “Northern Ireland is seeing a slow and steady recovery from the property crash of 2007, and the market is highlighting a readjustment in the most desirable places to live. The identified areas for growth are in and around Belfast, benefitting from better transport links and relatively short commuting times. While other employment hotspots are starting to spring up outside Belfast, it is no surprise that house prices are rising most in those areas with the best commuter times to Belfast. This highlights the importance of quickly advancing key infrastructure projects such as the new Great Victoria Street transport hub and the York Street Interchange project.”