A total of 80 per cent of commercial finance brokers questioned in a sentiment poll have predicted that house prices will rise this year.
The poll carried out by United Trust Bank found that 23 per cent of the 118 brokers who took part expect the average house price to increase by up to 2 per cent, while 58 per cent predict house prices will grow by 2 per cent or more.
The number that believe average house prices will fall was 12 per cent, and 6 per cent expect no change in prices.
United Trust Bank executive director Noel Meredith says: “The fact remains that we have a housing shortage and we’re still not building new homes as quickly as we need them. However, this on its own may not be enough to continue to drive house price inflation.
“Initiatives such as Help to Buy are providing considerable support to the market so the government’s commitment to keep it at least until 2020 is welcome. The market as a whole is becoming increasingly price sensitive with values rising and falling depending on the location and type of housing sought. For house builders, therefore it is vitally important to consider the fundamentals of planning a successful development; that they are building the right homes in the right places and can sell them for the right prices.”