Glimmer of hopefor local housing market

THE current economic climate may be bleak, however, according to statistics released by the Northern Ireland Courts Service, the number of house repossessions has not dramatically increased over the last year.

The report shows that the number of actions for mortgage repossessions over the last few years has remained at a fairly constant level.

In 2008 there were 2,009 mortgage cases disposed of by the Chancery Division of the Northern Ireland High Court. This figure rose to 2,666 in 2009, 3,004 in 2010 and fell back to 2,723 in 2011. In the first quarter of 2012 there were 792 cases disposed of, which compares to 809 in the first quarter last year and 1,069 in the same quarter in 2010.

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Local estate agent Tom McClelland said the local housing market in Lisburn has been “reasonably vigorous.”

Mr McClelland said that while there was still uncertainty in the market, particularly given the current economic situation in Europe, he hoped that house prices would stabilise.

“In the medium term we are not going to see a return to a boom in prices simply because the rules for bank lending have changed and credit is not as cheap or accessible,” said Mr McClelland.

“However the market is reasonably buoyant,” he continued. “There is activity in the market and there are glimmers of hope.

“We are looking for stability and for prices to stop falling,” he added.