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Northern Irish House Prices

In my first academic post (economics lecturer at the University of Ulster), I taught an Econ101 module from 1997 to 1999.  As part of the assessment for this module, I had an essay question which went as follows - what explains the large increase in Northern Ireland house prices over the past decade?  Little was I to know that house prices would keep on rising until 2007.  By some measures, the Northern Irish property bubble is one of the largest property bubbles in history.  We therefore shouldn't be surprised by the news today that house prices are now at or below their 2005 levels and that sales are less than one third of their peak levels.  Anyone who has tried to sell a house will realise just how bad the market is at present, which may suggest that house prices will fall further.

Clive Walker, one of my soon-to-be former PhD students, has been doing some really nice work on the role of the media during the housing market bubble.  In his thesis, he finds that media coverage of the housing market expanded rapidly during the 2000s and that media coverage affected the housing market.


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