Irish property prices up nearly 11 pct in year to February

Irish property prices up nearly 11 pct in year to February

Irish property prices up nearly 11 pct in year to February

DUBLIN, April 19 Irish residential property prices posted their fastest annual growth in nearly two years in February, lifted by sharp increases outside the capital Dublin, the state statistics agency said on Wednesday.

"This lack of competition is fuelling price growth and also dictating a tendency to build in areas that can command higher prices". An easing of Central Bank lending rules and the new Government help-to-buy subsidy has seen mortgage approvals surge. The Department of Housing says about 15,000 new dwellings were constructed past year but this figure is rubbished by experts, who suggest the true figure may be as low as 7,500.

The CSO study shows that more than 247,000 flight movements were registered by five main airports of Ireland in 2016, of which Dublin accounted for approximately 83% (204,563) and Cork handled 8% (19,908).

Meanwhile, residential property prices in the rest of the country jumped by 13.2% in the year to February.

From the trough in early 2013, prices nationally have increased by 52.1%.

The CSO figures also show a quarter of sales a year ago were to first-time buyers.

The border counties are the cheapest region in which to buy a home, with Longford the cheapest county with an average price of just under €88 thousand.

The least expensive Eircode area over the last 12 months was F45 "Castlerea", with an average price of €69,808.

Overall the property market is about 30% below where it was when the crash hit in 2007.

Dublin home prices are 31.3% lower than their February 2007 peak, while prices in the rest of the country are 35.7% lower than their May 2007 peak.

The housing market report was released amid concerns that Department of Housing data on house completions is inaccurate. In the same period, Dublin residential property prices rose by 67.9 percent, while residential property prices outside Dublin increased 47.9 percent from their lowest point.

The Institute of Professional Auctioneers and Valuers (IPAV) said prices would keep rising this year.

It added: "There is now little doubt that the loosening of the Central Bank mortgage lending rules and the Help-to-Buy scheme have added impetus to Irish house price inflation".