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Greater East Belfast Sectoral Study (ni Btl)

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Approximately 74,000 dwellings or 11% of the total Northern Ireland housing stock is now privately rented.

Due to the recent level of investor purchasers the supply of private rental property is

seen to be high in East Belfast, with good choice for tenants. The market is dominated

by landlords who operate on a small scale,(over 70% of landlords had 5 properties or

less) and who have entered the sector within the last 5 years ie since 2001. Average

rents for terrace property are £450-500 per month with larger properties attracting

higher levels. It is widely accepted that investors are not covering return through rental

income and that they are reliant upon capital gain to achieve an overall high rate of

return. Terrace property in East Belfast increased in value by around £2500-3000 per

month throughout 2006, providing confirmation that “Buy to Let” was a very attractive

investment in the current climate.

The rapid growth of the ‘Buy to Let’ market has stymied the increase in owner

occupation throughout Northern Ireland. This trend is set to continue as poor stock

market performance and low investment returns since 2001/2002 has made investment

in property a safer option for many people. The increased number of properties

available for rent has had an effect on rental levels, making them affordable for many

people, particularly those potential first time buyers unable to gain a foothold in the

current inflationary climate.While the current huge price rises are not expected to continue in the longer term, the fact remains that renting privately is likely become

more attractive for a growing number of people in the future.

Edited by Ash4781

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