How does Ireland’s property price growth compare with Europe?

Are Irish prices accelerating at a faster rate than in other European countries?

For sale signs at Park Avenue Sandymount. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

For sale signs at Park Avenue Sandymount. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

 

A report issued Friday by property website Daft.ie shows a rise in the average list price of property of 8.8 per cent in the first six months of this year.

This is not a new phenomenon in Ireland with property prices recording steady increases over the past few years.

So, how do we compare to our European friends? Are our prices accelerating at a faster rate than our counterparts on the continent?

For the most part, it appears as though they are.

Figures released by Eurostat at the beginning of this year show that Ireland had the second highest property price inflation in the whole of Europe.

At that time we were second only to Malta, which recorded property price increased of 5.4 per cent in the third quarter of 2016.

Ireland, meanwhile, recorded price increases of 4.7 per cent in the same period.

Growth recorded by Ireland and Malta far outstripped price inflation in the major euro zone economies.

Germany saw price rises of 1.2 per cent; France witnessed an increase of 2.5 per cent; in Spain the average price edged up by 0.8 per cent while Belgium reported increases of 2.9 per cent.

While national house price inflation is one thing, but it is extraordinarily difficult to compare average property prices across Europe.

What Daft’s report shows is that the average list price of a property in the second quarter of this year was €240,000.

What the figure tells us is that of all the properties listed for sale between April and June, the average price was €240,000.

It does not necessarily represent the average selling price of a house.

On that basis, it would be a futile exercise to try and compare prices across Europe.

But even in the absence of such a comparison, it is accurate to say that toward the end of last year house prices in Ireland were rising at the second fastest rate in Europe.

And on the basis of the Daft report, it appears that the growth is nowhere near finished.

Let’s hope no one mentions “soft landing”.