Annual bill for running a house bought in the boom ‘is €22,000’

Amount is closer to €50,000 when other living costs are included, AA report finds

The basic cost of owning and running an average Irish home bought during the boom has risen to almost €22,000 a year according to figures released by the AA.

But when all other essential bills are included families will need just under €49,000 each year – or €14,000 more than the average industrial wage, a further analysis shows.

The AA figures released this morning point to a dramatic divergence between those who bought homes during the boom years and those who buy today, with the latter group paying about €7,000 less in mortgage payments each year.

As well as mortgage costs, the survey included the costs of heating, phone and broadband, kitchen appliances, insurance, TV licence and bin charges, as well as the local property tax.

It has found that the average household cost for someone who bought a €170,000 home in 2013 with a 92 per cent mortgage is €15,655.49, up by 2 per cent since last year.

"The figures are scary when you itemise everything," said AA Home Insurance spokesman Conor Faughnan. "Each of the items that we pay for are familiar but when you add them all up it is small wonder that so many households are struggling financially."

Heavier burden
Mr Faughnan said that "the true burden" on those who bought at the height of the boom was 29 per cent higher, at €21,940. "The group of people who bought at the top clearly carry a much heavier burden. This continues to be a major social concern," he said.

Separate igures compiled by The Irish Times and published today show that a family of two adults and two children will need more than €26,000 to cover all essential bills not including those highlighted by the AA. That figure includes food, health insurance and school costs but does not include school fees or holidays.

Property tax increase
The AA calculations show a huge increase in property tax as it moves from the introductory flat rate of €100 to a six-month charge based on the property valuation. That figure of €315 will double next year as the tax is charged for a full year. The increase in the average price of a phone and broadband package from €357 to €419 also contributed. Meanwhile, digital television packages also increased on average from €285 to €333.

All of these combined had a part to play in the 2 per cent increase in the cost of living for 2013. There were other factors as well. Heating your home costs more in 2013 as gas prices have risen on average by €90 a year.

Conor Pope

Conor Pope

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