House prices climb 1.6% in October, CSO figures show

Dublin prices 34.9 % lower than at peak while outside capital they are 36.3% lower

The average cost of a home in the Republic climbed by 1.6 per cent in October according to the latest official figures.

The prices are now 7.6 per cent higher than they were this time last year.

The tempering of price inflation over the past 12 months on the back of rules imposed by the Central Bank in January preventing banks from lending any more than 80 per cent of a mortgage to all but first time buyers has been welcomed.

However experts in the industry have warned that a low level of transactions over the course of the year indicate that the market is still a long way from reaching an even keel.

The new figures from the Central Statistics Office (CS0) show house prices in Dublin climbed by 1 per cent last month.

The increase means prices are 4.5 per cent higher than this time last year.

Outside of Dublin residential property prices increased by 2.1 per cent last month and prices have now gone up 10 per cent compared to October 2014.

At a national level residential property prices are now 33.5 per cent lower than they were at their peak level in 2007 while Dublin house prices are 33 per cent lower than their peak.

Dublin apartment prices are 40.2 per cent lower than their peak which means that overall Dublin residential property prices are 34.9 per cent lower than their highest level.

Outside of Dublin residential property prices were 36.3 per cent lower than their highest level in 2007.

“We are clearly going to see single digit growth this year and that is welcome and more or less what we predicted at the start of the year,” said Angela Keegan of The Irish Times-owned property website myhome.ie.

“We need to keep a close eye on transactions. Up to the middle of November just over 38,000 houses changed hands: last year we finished the year at just over 43,000. That means there would have to be a big push to match last year and that figure is still a long way off what you would expect in a functioning market.”

Responding to the house price survey the Ithe Institute of Professional Auctioneers & Valuers, said there was little to surprise.

The chief executive of the group Pat Davitt, pointed out that the survey did not include cash buyers “and given the divergence in prices between urban and rural areas and the large gap in prices between new builds and second hand homes, national prices per se have little meaning.”

He said the lack of clarity around house building costs was one of the ‘unknowns’ that needs to be addressed. “We have written to the Minister for Finance today urging the Government to undertake an independent study as a matter of urgency to establish the true cost of building,” he said.

Conor Pope

Conor Pope

Conor Pope is Consumer Affairs Correspondent, Pricewatch Editor and cohost of the In the News podcast