Published Tuesday, 14 August 2012
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House prices falling
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July was the 60th month in succession that the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors' housing market survey reported a price balance below zero.
Around 68% recorded reducing prices during recent months - and NI is thought to be the most likely UK region to see further decreases.
Spokesperson for RICS, Tom McClelland, said: "After a large price correction since mid-2007, we are now seeing examples of properties selling at prices last seen in the early 2000s. On average, the price correction is between 50% and 60%, with properties in some instances selling at prices that reflect a correction of significantly more than this.
"Despite this dramatic improvement in affordability however, activity in the market remains constrained by wider economic conditions and fears about job security."
Prices are down from peak by between 50% and 60%, with properties sometimes selling at prices which have dropped even more.
It started in August 2007, although RICS said growth had been slowing for several months - since then the descent has picked up momentum.
The economist John Simpson said something had to happen as Northern Ireland was out of line with other UK regions.
"The fall from peak to trough will be at least 50%," he told UTV.
"We were way out of line five years ago - so far out of line with everywhere else in the UK that something had to happen and indeed it did happen.
"What we didn't know in time was how to give advice to all these people who were actually walking into negative equity with their eyes open."